I think I am feeling free? Maybe? Perhaps? In past years, freedom has been something that I thought I had, but realized that I hadn’t quite obtained. With as many times as I have lost or gained weight, I should be an expert. When I was bemoaning all the extra weight I was carrying, I didn’t understand. What more could I need to learn? I now see that God was trying to give me a deeper sense of freedom.
The first time I lost a significant amount of weight my focus was only on keeping the scale in a certain place. As a result, my habits were not strong. I often re-gained the weight, and seemed to only have a superficial level of “health.” I appeared healthy because my weight was in a normal place, but it wasn’t very deep.
The second time I worked on my physical activity behaviors, and learned to exercise just because it was and is good for me. This was right after I had my son, and my weight loss was very limited. I remember when my gym called and asked where I had been. I lived 2 minutes away! No excuse. In that season, I was not motivated to work-out. I had learned the bare minimum maintained my weight (e.g., eating within the bounds of hunger), and that’s all I did. I, however, was still immature and had to learn to practice health behaviors just because my health mattered. That led to a season of regular physical activity, but no real changes on the scale. Painful, but necessary for my growth.
So, this time around, after gaining 65 pounds, and losing about 80% of it, I think I finally learned a couple of things. Yes, my weight matters, but it also doesn’t matter. I’m still Rachel. Still full of all the wonderful things that make me unique and special, loved by my family and friends. Ten more pounds won’t change that. Freedom.
It is, however, more important than ever that I practice my health behaviors. This REALLY matters. When I at my heaviest, the doctor told me that I was pre-diabetic. Wow, her words were a hit to my heart. When I was younger, it was only about fitting into a certain size or type of clothes. However, now that I am closer than ever to 40, I am learning to make wise choices–just because they are wise. So, when I choose whole foods, or decide to take a walk, I find the decision is far less about achieving a certain number. The scale is a form of accountability, not my source of approval. Freedom.
I imagine there is likely more (with God there always is), but I think I see more clearly now. I can fly a little further on my journey without carrying this excess emotional, spiritual, and physical weight. I can worship God by making choices that honor all he has allowed me to learn, and act accordingly. I will continue to help others do the same. Thanks for journeying with me, friends.