Last post I talked about the judgment people put on those that have weight issues. I don't think there is a person alive that doesn't have a weight issue. Before you judge me on that, hear me out.
I know MANY skinny people that would KILL to be able to gain 20 lbs, put some "meat" on their bones. Some are guys, some are girls. For the guys being too skinny is considered "BAD" by popular choice, while the too skinny girls (whom some have problems with pregnancy due to weight) get the "you are so lucky".
I think MOST the people I know that are "skinny" and just that perfect size, are constantly dieting, exercising and fighting the bulge.
Then you get to the people that are over-weight, obese. These are the ones that fight it day after day. They get the instant judgment.
The other day Ben was talking to me about just that, instant judgment. Ben and I have known each other basically all our lives...we were friends for years and years before we even went on a romantic date. Ben informed me, "You are the you I knew in High School. You are no longer afraid of that instant judgment of your weight so you allow yourself to be put out there more often." I instantly agreed with him.
I was instantly judged everywhere I walked because of my weight. I was judged at the gym, I was judged at the school volunteering. If I dressed in a more slenderizing outfit I would instantly get praise and "you are looking so good". While all that was great, if I wasn't trying to loose weight I knew it was all a facade. I also knew many times it was judgment of "you really need to loose so I am going to encourage to see if I can help you continue".
The judgment you get when overweight and obese was debilitating for me. I tried to avoid social functions, especially if food was involved. I avoided getting together with old friends because I had "let myself go". I often turned to food to solve the problem rather than mentally working through it. I feel horrible that many great friendships were never discovered, lost or abandoned because I feared judgment. I couldn't be enough when I was fat.
Now when I am not enough (which still happens)...I know it isn't my weight. It is simply that I am not perfect.
I have made MANY great mistakes in my lifetime. I have treated loved ones and friends ways I never should have. While you may laugh...many of those were also weight related. I was never enough for my in-laws and they didn't understand me...that is what I saw in my eyes. My weight was the cause of that. While I now see that I was truly right in some of those assumptions, there is also part that I blamed my weight when in reality it wasn't that.
My fear of being judged over my weight put me on super high, overload sensitivity. If I sensed even the littlest of problems I immediately jumped to the greatest reason for it.
Losing weight has helped with much of this. Part has also been I have had to come to terms with myself as a person. Not everyone will like or get along with me. Some people may even hate me. That is the way life is. I can't force friendships, I can't make people like me. Before I just always had a "reason" I could finger for the problem...now I know it just be that we don't get along.
As I previously said, I had to deal with a lot when I underwent Gastric Bypass. There were several months there in which I was not getting more than 2 fl oz (which is about 1/4 cup) worth of food in during the whole day! My foods had to be simple and easy to digest. The smell of almost ALL food made me nauseated to the point I would throw up. Even being in a grocery store parking lot in which there was a fast food joint, the smell of fat in the air would make my mouth water with nausea.
After I was finally able to eat some foods, my small new stomach got an ulcer! I was on daily aspirin for my blood clots...well aspirin causes ulcers. Since my stomach is smaller, even a small ulcer is 10 times worse.
I dealt with a lot and had to come to terms with a lot of my food habits while puking over the porcelain bowl. The desire for fast food was GONE. I can now handle the smell of fast food but try to make it rare and far between (like 1 time in the month of April I took Lyse and Katy to McDonald's and that was for the play land and it was my friend that took them...I just picked them up. I actually kinda wish that I could still smell fat the way I used to...but I am also very grateful that olfactory sense has left. Seriously, no food smelled good. I like that food now smells good to me. I love that I had that time to learn what I needed...to get and gain the habits of healthy foods and eating. I had always been good...now I am even better. Tonight my snack was a hand full of snap peas...1 year ago it would have been a bowl of ice cream or cereal.
Judgment is a strange beast because we live in a world of constant and quick judgment. I am still judged by my weight but it isn't an instant, "that person needs to go on a diet". My relationships haven't all went from toxic to amazing. I will admit some of have gotten better (which in many ways HURTS because I know it was my weight that was stopping it from being good to begin with). Some relationships haven't changed. I don't know of any relationships that have gotten worse. I think the big reason for that is...I myself have changed.
I am no longer the person I was a year ago. I am more outgoing. I don't fear judgment when volunteering or serving. I now feel like I can make a tray of brownies and take them around to friends and ward members and not have them be like, "Oh of course it is the obese lady that brings brownies". I am NOT saying that they would have said that...that is more how I felt they would feel. As I said, I am NOT perfect and I KNOW that my changing attitudes has been the biggest change.
In the end, it breaks my heart that judgment exists. It breaks my heart that I was so judgmental of not only myself but of people and their capacity to love and accept no matter the size. I have true grief over the 7 years I spent obese and 4 years I spent severely obese. I lost those years. I also feel extreme gratitude that those numbers aren't higher, that I can have the life I wanted but was to scared and held back on.
I hope and pray I can remember this lesson and be slower to judge and quicker to love. While the weight loss surgery may seem easy...it wasn't. I had to face all these demons head on and I am still facing some. It sucks at times but I am trying to keep a good attitude about it all. I am forever grateful and hope and pray I can remember this and never go back to the way I was. I never want to be there again.