Now I'm ready, as the topic has become the root of many discussions with Ty and me.
The truth is...I have always been overweight. I don't really remember when it started to become an issue when I was a kid, but I have been forever affected by the teasing that has followed me most of my life. Whether it was boys in my class pretending to ask me to "go around" as a big joke, never having a boyfriend when my friends did, faking that I had no gym clothes so I wouldn't have to change with the other skinny girls, never being able to wear the same clothes as my besties, making poor choices with boys in University just to be liked....it has always been there.
Not to make excuses, but I do think part of it is predisposition to being overweight. I would say it has been an issue for many women and men in my family...but the fact is, I eat when I'm stressed. There have been times in my life where I have gotten to a great weight for me, a healthiness in the way I eat and a comfort in not only the clothes, but the skin I am in. I know that it is a lot of work to get to that weight, but I've done it and I know I could do it again.
This time I feel I really need some help. Not only help to get to eating healthy again, getting moving, but also to get my mind into putting my health first. When the twins were born, I was instantly down to a great weight because I had been diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes and I had put the boys first and controlled my sugars with eating really well.
If I could do this for my babies, why can't I do it just for me?
When Zackie's health became overwhelmingly stressful for me, I ate....for three years. My health just wasn't another battle or job that I could bring myself to attack. Life was hard, and I didn't want to make it harder. Now that Zack has died, I find comfort in food.
That brings us to today. I'm uncomfortable in my clothes, I question going out because I don't know how to hide my weight, I find comfort online as it is not necessary to show my body in my avatar, I don't have the energy to enjoy time with the kids as much as I would like and my weight consumes my thoughts most of the day.
In recent weeks, this issue has impacted my sweet 7 year old son. Ty has been coming to me telling me he want to be "honest" with me. I know what he is about to say, before he opens his mouth.....he wants me to skinnier like other moms. My heart sinks each time he says this to me. The worst part of this is not how I feel about hearing his honesty, it's about how my sweet son has internalized and worried about how I look and been even thinking about his own body. He looks at his own little belly and says he needs to lose weight. On our vacation to the waterparks, he was so concerned that he wanted to wear his t-shirt whenever he was out of the water. Even a member of our family, who works in the Eating Disorder clinic at SickKids, has seen a rise in anorexic boys as young as age 10 in her work!
I take my time, to talk to my introspective boy about the importance of what's on the inside of a person, without looking at the outside but at the same time....I get how he feels. We talk almost daily about accepting people for the colour of their skin, the texture of their hair and now the size and shape of their bodies.
The easy solution would be to lose weight so that I look like the magazine women he compared me to yesterday....but is that the real way to address this issue?
While I think that this discussion with Ty will not be solved as the numbers get lower on the scale, I'm ready to show him that with the start of the new school year, I am committed to getting myself and our family, healthier.
I just don't know how or where to start.