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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Facing the Numbers: I Finally Weighed In

I have a very unhealthy fear of the scale. I believe it started when a checkup with our family doctor at age 13 revealed a weight of 180 pounds. I was shocked. He didn't say anything, no one did. But I felt the shame and since that day, I can't look at a scale without instant anxiety.

There were times when being weighed was not an option. When I was pregnant, like all women, I was monitored closely. There have been periods (very few) when I was quite thin so I did weigh myself regularly. For most of my life, though, if there was any way out of being weighed, I did it. I admit that I even neglected to get regular physicals for fear of the scale, which is the stupidest thing I can imagine. I finally found a doctor whose staff looked the other way when I closed my eyes at the scale.

When my husband and I finally got serious about getting into shape this year, he weighed himself every day counting tenths of pounds. I assured him that I could tell simply by the way my clothes fit if I was on track. My daughter even had an idea for a scale that would track progress without revealing actual pounds, which was the most brilliant thing I could think of. Except just facing the numbers.

Again, I looked to the lessons of the Bye Buy challenge. What would be the worst thing that would happen? My weight would be for my eyes only but if the number was stenciled on my shirt, would anyone see me differently? Would I feel better in my jeans? Worse? What good could come from weighing in? It might be good if I find a comfortable goal weight and can check it every few days to ensure it stays. Again I recognize fear. What if I regain? I will stand a better chance of keeping it in check if I go up a few pounds as opposed to a pants size. After weighing (ha ha) the options, I stepped on the scale. I would actually look at the numbers for the first time in almost 10 years.

If you thought I would reveal that number, you would be mistaken! That will likely take years worth of soul searching! But now I know it. And, like everything else, once I know it, I can't un-know it. Unless I slip off that nasty scale and hit my head ...

The number was not as high as I feared, nor as low as I hoped. But I know where I stand. I can realistically monitor myself and decide when a slice of cake is okay. When an extra jog is in order. I have chosen a goal weight at which I will attempt to stay a few pounds from either way. My goal weight is 4 pounds away. Hopefully I will be there in July. Hopefully I'll stay there. (cue sound of screeching brakes ...) I can choose to do it. I will.

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