How did I really lose the weight?

When I reflect upon the three significant times I lost weight, I wonder how did I really lose the weight?

It is somewhat of a mystery. I say that because I don’t know if I can absolutely 100% pinpoint what it was.

In this world of ours, there is a silent understanding that there is only one way to lose weight. That there is only one thing that will get the weight to drop right off.

Advertisers have us believe that their product is that ONE thing. Which is why the diet industry sells billions of dollars worth of products every year promoting their ONE magic thing.

I have fallen for it many times. Those infomercials from the nineties had us departing with our money very quickly because their enthusiastic and overzealous sales pitch hooked us with their promises of tight buns, rock-hard abs and thin thighs. All because of a stepper you can use as you sit on your bum watching tele. Who wouldn’t want to do that and still get the body of a supermodel? How can I resist? Here’s my credit card number. Send it to me now!

Diet book upon nutritional cookbook. Treadmill upon ab cruncher. Skinny aerobics instructor upon famous actress workout videotape. It was all there for the taking. It was all there to help us get to that beautiful, skinny, tight body we were supposed to have.

The dream they were all selling was encouraging. The lifestyle they were promoting was gripping. Why wouldn’t you believe every single part of it? Why wouldn’t you do whatever it took to try and obtain it? It was there for the taking after all. I could have that too. Couldn’t I?

For someone as depressed, needy and hopeless as I was this was a match made in heaven. Of course, each and every word of advice, each and every loud and obnoxious aerobics instructor and each and every low-calorie meal would most certainly do the trick. Their intertwining twist of pressurising contempt and mercilessness for the fat human body was overlooked as the desperate need to fulfil societal desires of skinniness was favoured instead.

I favoured this desire over my own desires. I believed their word over my own. I gave in to their demands instead of listening to what I really wanted, and needed, instead.

On and on it went. Into the turn of the century and into the early decades of the millennium.

But, yet. Somehow I miraculously lost weight along the way.

Skinny was getting closer and closer.

I was losing weight without even trying.

The first time I lost weight without even trying:

As a teenager I was desperate to live in America. All the 90’s TV shows had me dreaming of a better life for myself. America. Where dreams come true. Where everyone was skinny, rich and lived a dramatic and fairly fun life. I wanted to be a part of that so much. My own home life was nowhere near that. My family was boring. We were poor. We weren’t beautiful. We lived in a shitty town. My mind loved the drama of someone else’s life. So, I constantly daydreamed about the day I would get to live there.

After working for a year at a day care centre, I came across a great way to follow my dream.

I became an au pair. Unfortunately, though, because of my weight the American families I applied to work with rejected me on the basis that my weight would be an issue. Their biases and prejudices against fat people came across loud and clear. But one family was willing to look past my weight issues. Ha! Little did any of them know, it wasn’t my weight that was the issue. It was everything else.

The twelve months I lived with a family of strangers was fucking tough. I wanted so badly to break free from my old ways but I had no idea where to begin let alone actually do it. I was too far inside of my mind to see straight.

Being the au pair to three month old twins was exhausting. They were so sweet, though. Full of life and ready to experience all of it. I wish I could have been more like them.

I took them on walks, played with them, sang them songs, thought of ways to keep our days interesting and fun and loved them as best I knew how.

On weekends I went out with friends and the family I worked for, exploring the beautiful area of Manassas, Virginia and beyond. Venturing into Washington D.C. and being an excited tourist getting to see Capitol Hill, the Potomac, the Lincoln Memorial, The National Mall and the White House. It was thrilling. A dream come true.

Unfortunately, as always, my mind tagged along for the adventure. Spoiling and ruining any little bit of fun I may have been feeling.

But, yet! A change was beginning to happen. The outside life was different for sure. The inside life was still basically the same. The same thoughts and the same feelings I had been carrying around since my teenage years. At this stage, these thoughts and feelings had only been taking up residency for about seven years. Still a long time!

For each of those three hundred and sixty five days where I was living out the most amazing fantasy-becomes-reality, I was still operating with the hate, the self-loathing, the depression and the anxiety. Causing me to remain attached to my food addiction. The foods I ate did have a slight improvement as my meals were being cooked by healthier people. People who knew nothing of food addiction. Who appreciated food in a way I was unable to.

My choices were only slightly less dictated by my food addiction and all that went along with it and was now influenced by my crushing embarrassment at the state of me.

On the day I flew back home to Australia, I was physically lighter. Not by much but it was something. It meant something. I was skinnier!

I believed, anyway.

The second time I lost weight without even trying:

London.

Beautiful, fantastic, amazing London.

How I love thee!
Always and forever.

The most significant change in who I am and what my body looked like happened whilst I lived there. Of course, at the time, I believed the weight loss was the most important. Hindsight has me seeing things somewhat differently.

This is how I spent my nearly four years living in London.

Partying. Clubbing. Drinking. Working. Walking. Sightseeing. Travelling. Having fun with new found friends. Believing I wasn’t worthy of any of it. Hating myself. Wishing I was someone else. Obsessing about my weight and my body. Stuffing my face with food at any opportunity I could to suppress all of my emotions. Hiding away in plain sight. Being a pushover. Keeping quiet about who I really am. Being fearful of just about everyone and everything. Feeling miserable. Letting my mind control the narrative.

Through all of that I still, somehow, lost thirty kilos worth of weight from my body.

And, only losing about five kilos worth of weight from my mind.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness. Charles Dickens – A Tale of Two Cities. Only one city for me, though. A city that encompassed so much and had me farewelling it with a broken heart unlike any I had experienced before.

The twenty seven year old woman balling her eyes out at Charles De Gaulle airport was figuratively a world away from the twenty two year old young woman who was nervous with excitement and trepidation for the years awaiting her in an unknown country.

Yes, upon departure, there were many differences physically, mentally and emotionally. Painfully I choose to inform you that the weight of every hateful, self-loathing thought and feeling I had ever thought and felt remained within the confines of my mind. With the twenty eight trillion cells of my disgusting body vibrating my misery out into the Universe.

No matter where I went or what I was experiencing, that misery was following me around like a sad and lost puppy.

However.

That five kilos worth of weight was enough to make a significant shift in my tectonic plates. All the thumping and thundering going on in my mind stopped me from noticing such a monumental change. If a tree falls in the woods does it still make a sound if no one is there to hear it? Does an adjustment of identity still evoke change if no one was there to witness it?

The third time I lost weight without even trying:

When I first visited the state of Queensland as a sixteen year old girl, I knew I wanted to live here. When I returned home, I did my best to convince my mum to return to her home state. She didn’t want to so I eventually let the idea go.

So, when the opportunity came to move there for good, I was excited and hopeful.

My not-yet-husband and I packed up all we owned and drove the eleven hours for a new life on the Gold Coast.

And, as with everything I do, it was fucking hard.

I had been nannying for about ten years by this stage and I was very much over it. I wanted a change. Because I didn’t have any other job skills, my options were limited. I did apply for quite a few nanny jobs but didn’t get any of them, leaving me without a job for about six months.

Mentally this was tough. My hole opened up and in I went. Swallowed up by despair and unworthiness.

I felt alone (which wasn’t exactly a new feeling) and hopeless. With no direction in sight.

Then one random day I was sent to the hardware store by my not-yet-husband to please get him a tube of silicon that he needed for his job. The man serving me at the register loved a chat, so we got chatting. He told me about a job. I was willing to do just about anything to get myself into a better place.

The job was stocking shelves at one of our large supermarkets. I got the job.

It was physical. Lifting heavy boxes, being on my feet for hours and hours, moving around constantly. I liked it.

It most definitely helped me mentally.

Life carried on.

I worked. I hung out with friends. We got drunk. Partied. We explored our new town.

The never-ending nagging thoughts of being skinny still plagued my mind.

The never-ending need to eat still consumed my world.

Things were different. Once again, I didn’t see it at the time but I can certainly see it now.

Life was different. I was different. If ever-so-slightly. That was all I needed to encourage myself to move my body in ways that felt good to me. I got a bike. I rode it to the lake and back a few times a week. I used my new Wii and a couple of fun workout games to get my body moving. My job was physical. I sometimes lifted weights.

It helped. It helped ease my mind of some of the burdens I had been carrying around with me for so long. It helped me to make better choices for myself in lots of different ways but especially with the food I was eating. It helped me to decide to study nutritional medicine.

I was changing.

Slowly but surely.

Now:

The body sitting at this desk, writing these words is heavier than it has been in a very long time.

My weight has fluctuated over the last twelve years since having my two children, as has my mind.

I feel there is a reason I am reminded of each of these times I have lost weight without really trying. Because for umpteen years I attempted to lose weight with no success. And, it is happening again.

There is a link. A connection. I want to know what it is.

Have you figured it out?

Having learned more about our humanness, our spiritualness and this mysterious universe of ours, I am led to believe that we are all connected to waves of energy. Those waves carry within them thoughts and feelings, directing these waves of energy to our point of focus.

The universe is based on the law of attraction. What you think about you attract. What you feel you attract. What you want you attract. What you don’t want you attract. What you believe you attract.

I most certainly experienced all of this at one time or another throughout this existence of mine.

My mind was full of thoughts relating to my body and my weight. My feelings were always hanging around the pit of my stomach because I was never skinny enough. I wanted to be skinny. I didn’t want to be fat. I believed I was not deserving of anything good in this world.

On and on it went.

But, there was something new in the mix. I was unaware of its discreet appearance. Hiding away in the shadows so that my mind couldn’t hack off the connection that had begun to form.

Like.

I was beginning to like myself.

With every experience, encounter, opportunity, insight, capability and normalcy that I had, was met with a secret confidence. My loving voice working away quietly in the background, gathering up every bit of goodness given to me and stashing it safely away until I was ready to accept her gift.

I wish I could identify exactly what this one thing was that helped me to lose the weight. I cannot. Because it isn’t just one thing. It is all things. It is every moment filled with an unrecognisable desire. It is every action taken with at least an ounce of doing something better. It is every want coming into vibrational alignment from a place where awareness has ceased to exist but has been enduring for all of eternity.

The answer is not what I was hoping for.

It is better than that.

The answer is to follow the direction of my loving voice. She will forever guide me to everything I need to know and everything I need to do.

If I need to let go of a crippling belief, then that is what I shall do.

If I need to turn my focus to all that I want instead of all that I am missing then that is what I shall do.

If I need to feel more appreciation for this wonderful life that I am living then that is what I shall do.

If I must stop fucking thinking about my weight and obsessing about my fat, not skinny body then that is what I will bloody do!

My weight was all I ever thought I was.

I now know better.

Yes, I lost weight those three wonderful times in ways I will never truly understand.

Yes, I have put on weight. This I do understand. I wrote about it in this column: Why am I so Fat?

My life is uniquely mine. As is yours. No two will ever be exactly the same. Some may have similarities, of course, but never identical.

What is for me, is not for you. And vice versa.

I share all of this in the hope you go within to hear your own answers from your own loving voice. What is she saying to you? It may not be what you want to hear. Just listen. It is all you need to hear.

My loving voice has informed me that each of these three times I have lost weight there has been a slightly different me. A better version of myself. She was subtle but she was there.

This time, now, when I am wanting the weight to release from my body, the difference needs to be different.

I have to evoke more power into who I am than ever before. I have to bring to life the version of me I have envisioned for so long. I have to believe this one thing that I have never allowed myself to believe before.

I AM worthy of everything good in this world.

Once I feel this with every fibre of my being, I will be able to let go of the physical weight, the mental weight and the emotional weight.

The physical weight has only ever been a representation of the mental and emotional weight.

This is the one thing I can do to let them all go.

Oh, and, of course, this… SHUT THE FUCK UP! Always so pleasing to yell.

Here is your exercise for this week.

What does your physical weight represent? Whatever the size may be, the mental weight determines the lens through which you see yourself.

Your mind has been running, no doubt, the same narrative for years and decades. What is the narrative? What is the story? Most importantly, what do you want it to be?

Listen to your own loving voice for the answers you seek.

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