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1.09.2011

clarification. and a little honesty.

okay. i'm gonna try something new here. i'm gonna be really candid. really honest.

(that was a joke. did you get it? you know, because i'm probably too honest sometimes? oh phooey, if you didn't get it that's on you).

no but really. i wasn't going to share this next bit. not because i'm ashamed of it. but because it was singular to me. because it never really crossed my mind that it was important. it was just a detail. a footnote.

and yet. maybe it is important. maybe it'll help elucidate things. provide some sort of foundation so that when i talk about weight and health and eating disorders you know where i'm coming from.

i gained forty pounds over the course of my eating disorder. 

yes. that's right. forty. forty pounds.

that's a fair amount. a nice little hole i dug for myself.

i tell you this because i need you to know that in getting healthy it wasn't just about finding a balance and figuring out some sort of normalcy--i had forty (count 'em, forty) pounds to lose, give or take a few.

have i lost them all? not a chance.

do i still have a fair amount to go? you betcha.

and i know i still have weight to lose not because of some number on a scale but because i'm carrying a little extra weight in my middle. and extra weight in the middle is not good for the heart. and since coronary heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in this country...well, i want my heart to be healthy.

what i'm trying to say is this: whether you need to lose five pounds, ten, two hundred, absolutely none, or actually gain weight, the process is not really that different. eat good food. real food. listen to your body. exercise. make good, positive choices everyday. and for the love of all that is good and holy in this world: don't diet. don't count calories. don't restrict. instead educate yourself and make smart choices. it's the little things--by eating real food and listening to your body--the body'll actually figure it out--at what weight it is most healthy.

and yes, it might take five years to lose all the extra weight, and yes, that can be frustrating--but it's frustrating for our egos, for our vanity, not for our bodies.

i feel like i've done a terrible job explaining myself in this post.

it's just that...all the stuff i say about food and health...those things are coming from someone who is acutely aware of the need to actually lose weight for the sake of my health.

does that make sense?

27 comments:

jprp said...

i just love your blog. Especially your honesty, it's very refreshing... thank you,:)

katy said...

i really loved this post. very candid. i can realte, because i moved to a new place and gained 15 pounds and it seems like it all went to my mid-section. and you are so right...it is not healthy. i have been doing exercises, cutting out refined sugars, eating whole foods and practicing yoga.

keep us updated and thank you for your honesty. ( :

...like a rolling stone. said...

approaching this topic at all is noble, but it really is encouraging to have any sort of conversation about health and weight and all that jazz that is real and raw and truly real.

mad respect meg!
xo.

wishful nals said...

your honesty is so refreshing. it always will be. rooting for you. all the way home. xo

Shannon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shannon said...

I commend you Meg. That was very brave.

anna said...

you know, you're amazing. for the honesty and the wisdom right there. and by the way, whether or not you have anything on your middle, you're beautiful.

Sandy said...

i think i see why you shared this. sometimes it's frustrating for people to hear very thin women talk about the evils of dieting. i used to be one of those skinny girls and i know most of my female friends didn't take me seriously. this post definitely adds something to your story -- a degree of relatability, i think. thanks!

Rachel said...

It makes absolute sense! I've been trying to think of a way to phrase this - the whole being healthy mattering and not how much you weigh or "need to lose" - because it's how I feel. But my educational background (pre-med biology major) gets in the way of expressing my feelings and makes everything too technical and complicated for others to relate to...so I've had no success in putting anything into words. I am deeply grateful for this post, and for your unfailing honesty :)

Alyssa said...

THankyou Meg. Your posts always fall on days when I'm bleh.

whether its 40 pounds or 200 we are all fighting the same fight!

Platypodian said...

This post = amazing.

Jackie said...

it makes complete sense.

I always relate to your posts on some level, but this one was dead on at the perfect moment.

You rock.

Rachel said...

You amaze me. If we were closer, geographically, I feel like we could love one another. In a real, not just blog adoring, not just pretty parts, not just freckles and smile and hair in the right place sort of look up to one another love each other, but in a sort of, "I have very similar ugly parts, even though they come from a different place" sort of way. And today I was --thisclose-- to hydroxycut and veggie-only-ing the rest of my janurary. because, while I'm trying to find the right therapist and the right way to make myself feel like the bright shiny girl i am when i don't feel dirty inside, i want to take all the shortcuts, but then i read your blog, and i realize that even those ugly fat cells deserve the ability to sort themselves out with real, happy foods, and real, happy choices. and you, by just having the bravery to have hope in a world full of swallowing the ugly, bby talking about the things that matter, and not just cupcakes or decorating or boys, but by talking about how those things help you find who you are meant to be, by acknowledging the importance of being who you MUST be, by acknowledging that simple, Aristotelian imperative, you acknowledge me, as a person. You acknowledge my fears. This is an absurdly long comment so, in short, never stop.

communikate. said...

Oh girl...We could talk!!

I totally understand the gain.

Megan said...

I think you explained yourself wonderfully :) and I loved it- I relate and understand far too well unfortunately. But I agree- it's about health, strength, and confidence- not a size or number on a scale.

Anna said...

It makes perfect sense. I wish high fructose corn syrup and partially hydrogenated things were illegal.

Jay said...

it always amazes me how strong you are in enabling yourself to be so vulnerable to the open public. and for the sake of this post, it made perfect sence to me :) best wishes from norway

Jessica said...

Your post makes perfect sense, and thank you and brava for your honesty. I had a very mild eating disorder in high school and over the course of only 6 months, I gained 20 pounds. Took me 2 years of walking more often and eaten well to lose that weight as I regained my (mental) health. So I understand what you mean, and I applaud you for your journey!

Ana* said...

it does make sense. your posts are so inspiring meg!

Jenni Austria Germany said...

this is perfect.

Shorty said...

So many people want to diet but not exercise or exercise but not diet. And I hate those commercials that suggest taking a pill will help you lose weight "with diet and exercise." Duh! Ridiculous! I like your honesty, Meg. I'm rooting for you too!

Jill said...

Thanks for the post Meg. I did get the irony of the first sentence and had to smile. Over the last couple of years I have figured out (finally) exactly what you are talking about. I have actually lost around 65 lbs and back to a having a healthy body. Only my closest friends actually know how much I have lost. Although it was an accomplishment I find myself feeling embarrassed about how much I actually gained over the course of 5 years. So thanks for being so candid.

Sarah said...

I have been going through so much lately. So many changes food has been my only comfort. and when i say food I mean BAD processed food. It had helped put on 50 pounds in over 2 years and I am so unhappy. I am trying to do better and make right choices without starving and doing fad diets, so thank you for your fresh ideas and real posts.

Brittany said...

makes total sense. i think that since these are the only bodies we have, we need to think long and hard about how we treat them and what we put into them. and if we are carrying extra weight that is hindering us from being our healthy selves, there are good ways to deal with that. thanks for reminding me.

Kelly said...

I totally, totally, TOTALLY relate to this post. I have had a really difficult two and a half years due to demands of college and things in my personal life. I've gained about forty pounds as well, and I want to lost weight for my overall health, too. But I don't want to become obsessed with dieting and connecting my self-worth to my weight, etc., b/c I did that in the past and it was really bad. Your posts are a breath of fresh air in a world obsessed with being skinny, not healthy, and I appreciate them, and your honesty, soooooo much. Thank you for all you write!

Shawn Tina said...

i'm going to be candid now: i wish the 40 pounds i've gained and lost and gained and now lost again were more a badge of honor, a sign of triumph. instead of everything else. i've let them stand for everything else - anxiety, (false) power, control, and on and on...

chrissy said...

i just want you to know that your words are such a source of comfort and guidance to me. all you've written on FED just makes so much sense. you're so right. and i'm going to steal your perspective and attitude towards food, bodies, heath, and happiness because it's so simple. it's absolutely how everyone should look at food and eating. i just think you are wonderful:)