I'm way overdue for my physical. Which, for me, is unusual. I am typically very on top of my yearly appointment, and I advocate for others to be as well. But I've been avoiding it. It wasn't until a coworker of mine said to me "Hey, you've been sick a lot, and I'm just wondering if you were planning to see your doctor". If she had not said that, I'm not sure I would have made that appointment. But I did. I'm in.
So why have I avoided it?
Not because I'm worried there is something wrong with me. Not because I don't value health and taking the proper steps to take care of yourself.
It's because I'm afraid of the scale.
You see, the number will be higher than the last time I went.
I'm not talking 20 lbs...or even 10 lbs. I'm talking probably 5. And the logical side of me knows that those 5 "lbs" are actually muscle. I have gained a ton of strength since joining The Barre Code. But the part of my brain that is way too hard on myself, and still struggles when it comes to body image and weight, is terrified to see that number. Because guess what? According to the BMI chart, that will put me at overweight. It's actually even dangerously close to obese.
And yep, I'm fully aware of the problems with the BMI chart (you can read about my past experience with that here: http://m5carolin.blogspot.com/2015/07/weight-loss-wednesday-numbers.html)
But there's still that side of me that really struggles with being labeled as overweight. The side of me that cringes seeing the scale higher than the goal weight I had set for myself. The part of me that beats myself up if I "slip up" on my diet.
I'm sharing this with you all to say----- the weight loss that I experienced did not take away all of my self doubt, my shame, my struggles. I still struggle. Life did not suddenly get easier when I lost the weight. Certain things got easier, for sure. And I did gain more confidence. But it didn't completely take away the hurt that I still sometimes experience. Social media can sometimes paint a perfect, pretty picture, and I am here to say that it's not always that way.
I will likely struggle with body issues for the remainder of my life. But that doesn't mean I don't try. I try be good to my body, I try to take care of it as best as I can, and I try to accept that I am who I am, that the number that shows up on the scale or the label that the BMI chart gives me does not mean I am any less worthy of a person. It's just not that easy. It is a day by day process, and things like going to the doctor and facing the fear of that scale and chart are huge steps in my progress.
This is a reminder to myself to be patient, to love yourself as much as you love others. to celebrate all the amazing things your body can do, and to let go of judgment and comparison. It's not easy, but you are a strong, capable woman who is so much more than any number.
Wish me luck on Monday, because it's going to take a lot of strength and grace to go to the doctor again, and to focus on my health rather than the numbers.