May 9, 2012

Things I'm Afraid To Tell You



Recently, a friend & I were talking about a friend who's a new mom & how like most new moms, she no longer has time for make-up, haircuts, or new clothes & has been wearing the same Old Navy cardigan for about two years now.  This new mom was feeling bad about herself because a lot of blogger new moms appear to have zero physical or financial changes post-baby.  One in particular seems to have magically maintained her petite, size 2 physique & is frequently publishing posts of herself sitting in trendy restaurants, professionally made up, styled by Kate Spade & professionally photographed.

This is a blogger who I've read for a few years & have always enjoyed, but as soon as my friend said this, I realized she was right.  I don't have kids, but my sister has four & enough of my close friends have babies & toddlers that I have a pretty good idea of how they feel & how they feel like they look those first few years.  There's not enough Spanx in the world for any of them to put a picture of themselves on the internet six months after giving birth & especially not sitting down in front of a plate of food.

With this conversation fresh in my mind, last week I read this on Creature Comforts & shouted "yes!" at my computer.  And then immediately forwarded it to my friend.  Ez of Creature Comforts has noticed that a lot of bloggers are doing a disservice to readers by not being honest about what their life is really like.  "Things I'm Afraid To Tell You" is an effort to poke holes in this perfectly styled ideal that a lot of bloggers put out there & the jealousy & self doubt it creates.  Ez lists all the bloggers who are participating.  Jenna of Sweet Fine Day is one of them & you can read her post on "Raising Girls Part 4" here.  I love Jenna & have been reading her blog for as long as I can remember.  It's a very poignant post.

So, in the spirit of transparency & in the spirit of this movement, I bring you my own "Things I'm Afraid To Tell You".

I weigh around 180 lbs, give or take, depending on the day of the week.  On Fridays, I'm usually around 178; on Mondays, I'm closer to 188.  It's terrifying, it's humiliating & it's what I weigh.  If you know me, you are well aware of how neurotic I am about my weight.  Hell, if you've just shaken my hand at a party, you know this.  It's no secret.  What is a secret, or has been until now, is that I actually weigh enough to justify the neurosis.  A lot of friends my size weigh 20 lbs less than I do, so when it comes up, I just let people assume I also weigh 160 lbs.  But I don't.  I don't know why.  Maybe I have lead bones.  Who knows.  For scale, I'm 5'6 & a size 12.

I worry (a lot) about what people think about my weight.  Do they wonder if I just don't care?  Do they feel sorry for me & think, 'aww, such a pretty face, shame she can't lose 20 lbs'?  I worry that whatever else I succeed at, my inability to maintain a single digit size overshadows it.  A very smart girl I work with asked me one day why I care so much about my weight.  I told her that I always feel like the fattest girl in fat town.  When I meet for all of my various running clubs, or a fancy, schmancy yoga class, I always feel like the fattest girl there.  So my friend asked, "Yes, but are you the worst one there?"  Me, "No".  Her, "Then why do you care?"  Touche.

You know, there was an old adage when I lived in NYC that you couldn't have it all, you could have an apartment & a job, but not a boyfriend, or a boyfriend & a job, but not an apartment.  Maybe that's it.  Maybe because I have a great husband & a great job, I can't have a hot bod.  I don't know.  Maybe I just need to eat less ice cream.

Thank you for allowing me to give voice to this inner demon I struggle with EVERY DAY.  I encourage you, if you haven't already, to go back & read the other "Things I'm Afraid To Tell You" posts, particularly the ones by Ez & Jenna.  And if you feel so inclined, write your own!  I'm a week late to the party, but I still felt it was an important message to share & I hope some of you will do the same.

XO!
Kim

20 comments:

Sarah Shearer said...

Awesome post. You might just have inspired me to write one of my own:)

happilyeverfaster.com said...

Gurrrrl, I love you and this post so hard. I am constantly impressed by you and so glad to have you as a new friend. People, me included, just gravitate to you without even realizing it. You are not the fat girl. You are my athletic friend who has encouraged me to try new things (f’ing yoga sweat fest) and introduced me to a healthy, active bunch of women that I look forward to seeing every week (Pancakes!). Aside from your smarts and snarkiness, your love for fitness while balancing real life shit is one of the things I appreciate most about you! Well, and how your bangs always look so fresh.

You are not the fat girl. You’re real, good people. And you go HAM every single day. So there.

Big hugs –
Jenn

Libby said...

Agree! Kim, in my opinion, you are one of the most fit people I know! That's so much more admirable than being the thinnest person in town w/ zero athletic ability. You're an inspiration and I'm so happy to have you an active, healthy friend. Kudos for lettin' it all hang out on this post.

Anonymous said...

Awesome post! It came at the exact right moment for me. I saw a pic of myself yesterday and it instantly pushed my self criticism button about my looks, my age and my weight. I forgot that this "not slim but able" body just did a half marathon almost two weeks ago and a triathlon three days ago. Thank you for reminding me!

Julie

abpaulson said...

i agree with everyone- especially what jenn said about you being my fit, athletic friend! i always refer to you as "kim, my runner friend." you even got me to run my first 5k!! thank you for being an inspiration to us all!

Freya said...

You are a super smart, brave, and confident woman. For someone who "has weight issues," posting about it and posting your weight is kind of the bravest thing I can think of. Love your honesty and appreciate your friendship.

Sarah said...

Can we hang out and make ice cream ASAP? I meant to tell you how much I loved this post, but it completely slipped my mind. LOVED it. Thank you for sharing.

Mom said...

Excellent post from someone who was there when they said she weighs 8 lbs exactly! You are beautiful, smart and hilarious! You are now blazing a new trail...inspiring others! :-)

Ginger said...

One of the hardest things about the internet in general is the facade it presents. Heck, one of the hardest things about life. I love that you pulled the curtain back. Brava!

The Blonde Mule said...

Sarah: You totally should! Thank you!

The Blonde Mule said...

Jenn: aww, thanks friend. I'm so glad I work somewhere with awesome people like you who become more than "work friends". Big hug right back at you.

The Blonde Mule said...

Libby: thank you! You're one of the most fit people I know, haha! We need to work-out more together!

The Blonde Mule said...

Hot Koh Koh: thank you! You're right, we need to keep reminding ourselves of what our bodies do for us. In you case, completing an Iron Man, which is NUTS!

The Blonde Mule said...

Alexis: thanks, friend. P.S. You need to start running again. You should do the East Nasty Potato to Tomato 5K training program. It starts in the next few weeks. XO!

The Blonde Mule said...

Freyanator: aka, my "work friend". I wish I had had your insight & confidence when I was your age. My twenties would have been so different. You're awesome & I'm so glad I met you.

The Blonde Mule said...

Sarah: hahaha, yes! I've been waiting to make a recipe out of the Jeni's book for almost a year now. I'm so there!

Thank you!!

The Blonde Mule said...

Mom: thanks for the perspective, although I was hoping that you would tell me that everyone in our family does in fact have lead bones. Oh well... Ha!

The Blonde Mule said...

Ginger: thanks! And right back at you! Your blog is & continues to be an inspiration in regards to pulling the curtain back on all kinds of things. Keep up the good fight!

Marne said...

I'm a week late but...I have lead bones too! Even had an orthopedic doctor shocked by how dense mine are. I weigh around 175 and totally understand how you feel. I always feel like "the big" girl as the tallest and heaviest in the crowd which I know isn't true but it's hard not to think it. The silver lining of bones made of concrete is that we probably won't get osteoporosis...so there's that. You are one of the funniest people I know and are kicking butt out there running, yogaing, and having the most fun of everyone out there. We have to stick together because when it comes down to it...if the world was coming to an end it would be us sturdy girls clearing the path. :)

The Blonde Mule said...

Marne! I'm so glad you weighed in, pun intended. You're my weight/body role model. You look so good all the time & you're so GD athletic. I'd feel better about my weight if I were a triathlon & an Ironman like you (& Julie). You're a constant reminder that the number on the scale doesn't matter.

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