Weight Nonsense

A long, long time ago I got married.  I headed to the Department of Licensing (that’s the DMV for all you non-Washingtonians) with my brand new social security card, ready and excited to get myself a new driver’s license with my new name on it.

When I got to the head of the line, they asked me if I wanted all my information to be the same on it.  Hair: Brown (sure) Eyes: Brown (yep) Height: 5′ 10″ (yep, though if I stand up really straight I can eek out an extra half inch) and Weight: 150 (hmmm).

150.  For a person of my height, that’s pretty skinny.  I’m sure I’d look rather skeletal at 150, actually.  According to the BMI I should be in the 160’s somewhere, but the BMI doesn’t take into account my voluptuous frame.  So, yeah, 150 is kind of a ridiculous number to put on my driver’s license.

But I did it anyway.  Every time someone cards me, they see the number 150 for my weight and I’m sure they scoff (albeit silently).

The 150 was a holdover from my high school days, when I was never 150 but wanted to put a whimsical number on my driver’s license in the illogical hopes that that number would magically manifest if I carried it around in my purse long enough.

I was a usual teenaged girl, ashamed of my weight.  I would rather have stabbed myself with a plastic spork than told you my actual weight were you foolish enough to ask.

Now, though?  Well, I had a bit of an epiphany last night and it was rather liberating.  I was talking to a friend last night about how much I weighed while pregnant and I used the actual weights I can remember.  Eyebrow-raisingly large numbers and everything.

I haven’t been coy about my weight for a long while now, but I never sat down to try to articulate why that might be.  I think I figured it out last night.  It’s because I don’t look any different to you when I tell you a lie about how much I weigh.

If you ask and I tell you I weigh 180, I look the same.  If you ask and I tell you I weigh 210, do I automatically look 30 pounds heavier?  I think not.  If I lie and tell you I weigh 180, I’ll still have the same physique, just with bonus self delusion.

I definitely get raised eyebrows when I’m candid about my weight, though.  210 is a big number.  It’s the kind of number that would make my high school self lock herself in her room to write morose poetry by candlelight (oh yes, that happened).

But, I’m working on it.  I’ve gotten below 200 pounds before and I can do it again.  I’m taking active steps (I joined a gym, had a free session with a person trainer on Saturday) and making mistakes (I ate a delicious brownie while I wrote this) but I’m working on it.  My physique, like the rest of me, is a work in progress.

But it’s not the kind of work in progress you can hide in your journal or stash on your hard drive until it’s perfect enough to let other people see it.  It’s out there, jiggly parts and all, and I see no reason to pretend I’ve already reached my goal.

So there.  I weigh somewhere in the neighborhood of 210 pounds.  And I’m working on it.  I’m jiggling my way to roomier pants, and if you ask me what I weigh I will tell you.  Just please do me a favor and try not to gasp.

7 thoughts on “Weight Nonsense

  1. It’s a shame the healing properties of brownies does not include weight loss. Would making the brownies using a can of mushed up black beans and brownie mix earn you any good points?

    Totally unrelated, but the combo of food and pregnancy made me think about asking you about your adventures in baby food making…any tips, hints or suggestions?

  2. You just had a baby! That’s alright, take your time to shed it off. I am 5’3″ and I weigh 148 (ahem!) – I started sessions with my personal trainer and she told me something – weight loss does not always mean seeing those numbers go down on the scale – losing inches around your waist, able to sprint for a longer duration on the treadmill, doing 25 push ups at one go are also signs of improvement.
    As far as diet is concerned, I never believe in giving up on your favorite food – it means, eat what you like, but try and limit it – Don’t overdo anything !

  3. -Blanche, You can put beans in brownies? Why ever would you do such a thing? Oh, baby food making! I do have a few tips and suggestions. Maybe I should write a post about it? Here are a few quickies though: The Beaba is an awesome appliance if you don’t already own a steamer and a puree-capable appliance. Fresh fruits and veggies really do taste better, and try to go organic as much as possible. Skip rice cereal, starting with fruits will not make your baby refuse veggies, and let Little One try a variety of different tastes. Also, we weren’t strict at all about following the prescribed timeline for introducing foods to Aidan and he turned out just fine. Expose Little One to all kinds of tastes and hopefully you’ll end up with a kid who eats everything!

    -G, Congrats to you for starting personal training! Thanks for the advice, and good luck to you!

  4. You are fabulous! Way to smash that taboo. I am also someone who doesn’t want to talk about my weight, but hearing you stand up and own it has reminded me that the first step to escaping the Tyranny of Unrealistic Numbers, is to replace those expectations with healthier ideas about what’s normal, healthy, and beautiful. Cheers to voluptuousity! :-)

  5. -Ashley, Thank you! I agree, but also think you have nothing to be shy about! You’re GORGEOUS, and probably weigh half as much as I do though you’re the same height!

  6. Eep, I forgot to sign up to get replies emailed to me! Thank you for your flattering words :) You know what’s funny- I’ve been getting a little more comfortable talking about weight just because of diving- I finally had to just say it so that we could calculate what it takes to sink me! It’s another example of how talking about weight helps to situate those scary numbers within a normal range. Ah, the challenges of being a tall woman!

  7. -Ashley, LOL, I don’t know why but your phrase “what it takes to sink me” makes me giggle. And PSH, what challenges of being a tall woman? We get long legs (that pants are never long enough to cover) and general ease in existing (like fitting into the back seats of most cars and airplane seats). There are no challenges!

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