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Fresh Starts

I’ve always struggled with my weight. Not in an “oops, I’ve gained 5lbs over Christmas” sort of way, but in a manner that warrants subsections of fat pants in my closet. “Chubby, kind of fat and only stretch allowed.”

Stress and significant life events seem to trigger gains, and when I finally strike a balance in my life, things settle down, and I live in happy harmony with my body.

I fought, and successfully won the battle between happy, healthy eating, cheese nachos, and a plump size 12 life. So long as I felt active, didn’t mind getting naked with someone, and felt good – I was okay. The fight was mine to win.

After giving birth to my daughter in 2009, and even despite some challenging news regarding her health, I still managed to be kind to myself and nourish myself with good food and lots of exercises. It was the news in 2010 that included admitting her to the oncology ward, which genuinely turned my world, and me, upside down. I gave up, and I gave in. I needed to feed my stress, and quite frankly I was too tired to fight that battle anymore.

What experts don’t tell you about having a child that faces a significant illness is that there is a hangover that lasts, in my case anyway, for years following. I’m sure families who have helped their loved ones through significant life scares, such as cancer, can relate. It impacts the whole family, their sense of security, and it leaves the caregivers tired. In my case, the kiddo is good – her news continues to be good, but I was depleted; anything I had left went to her.

I don’t want this to be mistaken as a pity party or an excuse, but I’m writing this so that I too understand where I lost my way and I cut myself a little slack along the way.

I’m amazed that despite neglecting my body for the better part of 10 years, it still works and serves me well. I read #bodypositivity bloggers who will argue that being fat doesn’t mean you are unhealthy – and I understand that. I can only speak from my experience, and my experience is that my luck is running out. I can feel the impact of my weight on my joints. I don’t feel like getting naked with anyone anymore, and my blood pressure is high. The time has come that my fight includes a fight for me.

And so, at the eve of my 44th birthday,  I realize that this is simply who I am. It is my reality, and so I need to deal with it.  I don’t want to be at war with my body anymore. I’m looking to make amends.

Why document on social media? Despite my desire for privacy, I need to honour this journey for myself. As I mentioned, this isn’t my first rodeo in the weight-loss, healthy, wellness game – but I sure as hell need it to be my last.