Friday, October 15, 2010

Thin or Fat?

I used to think 180 pounds was excessively fat. Coming from my high school and college years weighing 140 pounds and thinking THAT was way too chubby, anything over 150 pounds seemed obese. My husband used to tease me that "when you marry a girl, look at her mother because that's what the girl will look like in 20 years." I was horrified and said I would NEVER look like my 240 pound, morbidly obese mother! When I surpassed 160 pounds after my second pregnancy, my insensitive father-in-law came for a visit and declared me a "fat ass" just weeks after I lost my baby. I believed him.

I used to think 180 pounds was impossibly thin. Coming from a decade of weighing between 245 and 280 pounds and feeling trapped in my body no matter what I did, anything under 230 pounds seemed almost skinny. When, at one rare point, I got down to 237 pounds doing the South Beach Diet, people came out of the woodwork to tell me how amazing I looked. After I gained back all that weight, no one said anything anymore. 237 seemed like a dream. Anything lower, a fantasy. And 180? Downright skinny.

Here I am, 180 pounds. Excessively fat, impossibly skinny. Am I either? No. Although some days, I feel both. I look at my belly and, in my mind, it is as huge as it ever was. My thighs seem to go on forever and my upper arms still hang like the ears of a Basset Hound. And I look in the mirror, and see this fabulously skinny woman with a waist and nice curves and space between her legs. The dichotomy is astounding. Fat and thin, both and neither.

Perspective is everything. From the underside of 180, that number may look huge, but coming down from above it seems small. I love what I have done for my body, and for the most part, I feel fit and thin and good. I can't wait to see how 168 feels!

30 comments:

Andra said...

I love how I feel at this weight, which my body seems to really like, too, between 176-179. Am I considered obese "by the charts" sure, by about 10 pounds but fuck the charts, after losing 100 pounds, I feel wonderful, like I can do anything.

As long as you feel strong, vibrant, healthful and energetic, fat or thin does not even enter the equation. They are just words.

Kelly L said...

When I look at photos of myself - I see how large I really am - living in my body and not looking it's easy to forget... You inspire me...

Love to you
Kelly
I've Become My Mother

K. said...

Yay for 180!!!! You are such a thoughtful and good writer! Work it girl! Your next goal will be here in no time at all! K.
www.it-is-time.com

Theresa said...

what is significant for 168? Normal BMI?
Just curious as usual. :D

Bubba said...

I wish that worked for men. My father was thin and healthy.

Leslie said...

My favorite and most used saying is "perspective is everything", so I smiled when you said it! Having a few years on you (like almost 2 decades!), I can tell you that once we've had babies and our bodies have been used and abused for a lifetime, certain things don't come back. But I think of them as well earned battle wounds. You're doing amazing. I feel a 179 in your near future! )tomorrow?)

fcornelius said...

That is awesome!!! I weigh 186 and just started my weight loss journey. Can't wait to see what 180 feels like too.

Anonymous said...

Not interested in what 180 looks like or in what 168 looks like.

I'm waiting to see what you feel like after maintaining your massive loss for, say, 5 years. I'm waiting to read the posts about how you keep the weight off. Losing weight is the fun, easy part. If we are honest, most of us old timers know that and will admit it.

Keeping it off? That's where the *fun* begins.

Good luck! (Seriously.)

mensa said...

I hit 179.5 last Monday but I didn't come from the same beginning. (I've lost 26.5#) It's awesome to see your progress (and I'm sure it wasn't easy). I'd like to see 168 too. I think I'll be following you to get the feeling we're doing it together. I just "came out" into the blogger world in June.

~Sheilah
menewin2009.blogspot.com

Jane said...

Be proud of what you have accomplished, and don't let the scale "throw you." I wish I would have been happy the last time I weighed 148 (I'm only 5'3") instead of berating myself and trying to reach an impossibly low weight (at least for me). I am convinced that the frustration of that self-imposed struggle is the reason that I began to regain. You're right--perspective is everything. It's very wise to understand that in this weight loss struggle.

Jayne Doe said...

I can *SO* relate to this post...you have no idea how much.

Lyn said...

Theresa~

168 is exactly 110 pounds gone and was my original weight loss goal when I started my journey. It is also the lowest I have been in 15 years :) But I do not expect to stop at 168. I am going to try for the 140's.

foodmasochist said...

Congratulations, be proud, feel light-you are a great inspiration. And BTW, last time i checked, you can't keep it off until you TAKE it off, anonymous. -jen (foodmasochist)

Cynthia said...

Thanks for telling us about the 168... I was curious too!

Three cheers for reaching 180! You'll be at that 168 soon!

Kimberly said...

Weight, much like age, is a state of mind. If you feel okay about where you are then you are okay. And since we are the biggest judges of ourselves and we accomplish being okay with where we are at then everything is alright.

jennifer said...

I am 179 pounds right now. I'm down almost 20 pounds from my highest nonpregnancy weight. I get dressed and feel pretty good because I can get back into the size 14 clothing in my closet.

Then I look in the mirror and think, "Whoa girl, you've still got a way to go." Proud one moment, frustrated the next.

So much of the journey is in the mind.

John's Weight Loss Blog said...

Great perspective! I feel the same about a while bunch of different weight milestones all the way down. If I ever see it.

cmoursler said...

I got on the scale today at 148 and felt thin...read some jerk on a message board making a shout out to all women who were 5'4 and over 140 pounds telling them they were "fat'.
I have a feeling his girlfriend is closer to 200 and telling him she is 140 but that's just me.
A holes will be a holes.
it's how you feel about you that matters
keep on rocking the scale.

Rosie's Healthy Living Blog said...

I know what you mean. I spent my whole life thinking I was fat, and now when I look at my old pictures and see how thin I actually was back then, it makes me mad that I wasted so much time thinking negatively about myself. I'm just glad I'm on the way back down now!

Erin said...

Reality...it is all about perception, isn't it? You're doing so well...you inspire people with your honesty.

Liway said...

Congrats on reaching 180 Lyn - you're just amazing!!! Great job on sticking to plan too - you've had lots of temptation lately!!

Hey anonymous - if you're so "not interested" than why don't YOU check back in about five years to see how she's doing! Sheesh!!

I don't usually react to anonymous posters...but I just took offense to this particular one. Perhaps it was the way I interpreted it - but it certainly rubbed me the WRONG way!! Not very positive OR encouraging....and of course...anonymous!! (insert rolling eyes here)

You're doing great Lyn - carry on!!

Lippy said...

I really liked this post. That's the way I feel right now: 180 being impossible. I've recently started my own weight loss blog to help me along the way... but it just seems like an eternity fromnow. Thanks for the motivation! - Lippy

Anonymous said...

You are doing fabulous and your posts always make me think. I thought I was fat years ago at 150. Now I'd absolutely LOVE to be 150. It is all about perspective. I'm excited for you to break into the170's and hit 100 lbs gone soon. What a big accomplishment that speaks volumes for your determination and dedication.

To anonymous~~ no one likes a jealous party pooper. If you aren't interested then why read at all? It sound like you want her to fail. Very sad for you.

~~Misty

Stacy said...

Beautifully put and beautifully written. I felt HUGE when I was 140 and 150 as a teenager. Now at 265 (down from 280 this time) I dream of 160 and it feels unacheivable.

bbubblyb said...

I say it's all about health be it 200 or 140. For me of course 180 seems like a dream, I'll take it anyday over 378 lbs. It really is about how we feel about ourselves. I say who cares what others say or think. You are doing great and looking great in my opinion.

Elana said...

Hi, I just found you and was excited to read it is not just me who looks down and sees her legs as the same size when she weighed 211. I am trying to change that but am not sure how. I'll keep working on it and will let you know when I do. If you get there before me please continue to share.

Jill said...

What a great post, and so true! Thanks for shedding some perspective on the journey :)

Rawbel said...

I can't wait to hear how 168 pounds feels for you, too! I sent a cyber hug when I read about you crying for the bigger you when you compared the shirts.

gaelowyn said...

I totally get what you are saying!!! I'm slowly but surely on my way back, too. I'm still looking to get under 200.. thanks so much for verbalizing all these thoughts and putting them out there for the world to see!! it's very helpful for us to know we are not alone in this battle!

Anonymous said...

Your blog is inspiring me to lose weight before things get worse. I'm at 205lbs (5'8") and this is the heaviest I've been.

Reading your words is making me think, "yes, it IS possible" as simplistic as that sounds.