I have been thinking about this post for a while. Inspired by my friend (you know who you are) and my kids.
If you know me, have met me, or saw me on the TTC platform – I am a skinny, slight, slender-ish person. Always have been. Always. My confession: I have a digestive disorder, IBS-D, which is unreliable, embarrassing and the ball on my friggin’ chain.
So when, someone says “I hate you – you’re so skinny” (hello mom!) I accept it (though – would you say this to someone on the other side of the scale?! “I hate you – you’re so fat” no – you wouldn’t because it is a faux-pas to talk about someone being heavy – however skinny girls – they are hate-worthy).
See the thing about IBS-D is that I don’t get the nutrients of my food. An exciting event, stress, certain foods…can all make me drop pounds. I lost 4 lbs at an all-inclusive resort (and don’t say “I wish I could do that” because I call liar liar pants on fire – you don’t want this – you eat and nothing stays in – you can’t go out into the world – you are in pain – you are embarrased – you have no control over your life). I never know when or for how long an IBS crisis will strike. So at that all-inclusive resort – I ate rice and chicken – for 7 days – and still the IBS thunderstorm descended.
Through my teen years, I delt with my IBS by not eating until it was “safe” (read: I’ll eat when I get home and there is a bathroom at the ready). So I got the anorexic tag. (Elaboration: I still don’t eat when I go out – it is years and years of habit management – I don’t need comments, advice or snorts about “that’s how you stay thin” – no this is how I manage having a life and going out into the world – everyday – of my life).
In September 2007, I weighed 99 lbs (my prince had suffered a pulmonary embolism and the stress of it sent a brutal thunderstorm) – I looked horrible (so my mother-in-law kept telling me). Weighing so little also makes one really friggin’ tired – not good when you busy leading two little children through life.
I’ve been to a nutritionist, counsellors, doctors and naturopaths. I have a prince who loves me so much that he points out the washrooms to me whenever we go out in the world. I have family & friends who don’t snort when I have a liquid lunch while they eat at a restaurant.
I must say – there was a hiccup in my grand food management plan. When my kids started saying “I’ll eat when Mommy eats” when we went on a family field trip (we all know, by now, I’m not going to eat – not because I’m on a diet but because when I have an IBS thunderstorm it is sudden and raging – and that can’t happen when I am the only caregiver on a family field trip – I have to have control over my body). So, I eat a couple bites of a granola bar while I supervise the my kids eating a full and balanced lunch. (and before anyone gets rant-y on me: I eat full & balanced meals all the time – at home – in front of my kids – they know I get thunderstorms – we don’t talk about #diets, #weight or #gettingfat. We talk about #being active, #healthy food and #going out).
I connect on the other-side-of-the-scale to their weight, eating and body images. I support anyone who makes the decided-effort to take off – or put on – weight in a healthy fashion. In my little opinion, everyone has an imperfect body and we can chose to accept it, manage it or change it — but I don’t think anyone should be hated because of it.
I’m trying to teach my kids that weight doesn’t matter – it’s how you feel in your own skin which counts.