Well, I thought I’d create a new series here. Not only am I a crazy person, but I also have battled with eating issues for most of my life, well, all of my life. I can’t remember a day when “my weight” wasn’t a topic of conversation or a point of shame.
I was always the fattest girl in class. Always last around the running track. Last to be picked for teams. No boy ever wanted to date me (that I knew of). Clothes never fit me right and they were all ugly. Friends betrayed me because they wanted to be cool and I wasn’t. I’ve been teased so many times I could never count it all. My pediatrician told me I was too fat when I was like 5-years-old and tried to scare me into being skinny by saying if I didn’t lose weight I would get big fat ugly bulges. I went on my first diet and saw my first nutritionist when I was in fifth grade. And I started starving myself when I was 15. That worked for awhile and I lost a lot of weight to the praise of everyone around me, but then after about 6 months of barely eating (and my hair starting to fall out) I lost control and started eating again. And purging. And bingeing. For years and years. Now I am the fattest I’ve ever been and I’m pretty much the happiest I’ve ever been! So, I’m going to share with you what I know and what I think. You probably won’t agree with me, but then again you might. What I hope is at the end of the day you and I can both look at ourselves in the mirror and say that what we see is all okay. If we can do that, then we can change the world, and changing the world is what I’m all about.
So, for this first post I want to get right to the point. Step one to body acceptance is throwing out the scale! Oh yes, I said THROW OUT YOUR SCALE! Put it in the trash bin, donate it to Goodwill or a charity, sell it on eBay, or (and this is my personal favorite) take a hammer and smash it into bits! While you are smashing it please take a photo or video tape it or something and if you can send it to me. If you allow me to, I will put it up on this site for you. I would smash it myself, but I don’t have a scale! There is nothing good that comes from having a scale. It will only make you feel artificially good or artificially bad. Give me ONE good reason why you need to know how much you weigh. If you have an eating disorder or if you are almost there with one a scale will do nothing for you except help you obsess about your weight.
I know. Get on the scale—no shoes…wait, no clothes better yet! I weigh how much??!! Oh crap! Time to start a diet. Time to exercise. Time to purge. Let me just throw up a little of what I ate for lunch and then I’ll try the scale again. Reset the scale to zero. Get on gradually. Or maybe jump on! Yes! The number went down! As long as I can keep doing this and keep going down I will be okay. Tomorrow: get on scale. Numbers too high! Damn it! Must refuse all sweet things. Only eat good food. Never eat bad food. I must be good, because when I am good and disciplined I will be rewarded with a smaller number no doubt. Etc. I know. I know.
And now it is time to step off the scale. Step away from it. Don’t keep one in the house. Get away from measuring yourself with arbitrary numbers. Do those numbers really reflect who you are as a beautiful, smart, amazing person? What can the number 105 or 155 or 215 or 415 tell me about you? Will the number 105 tell me if you like the color blue or if you have HIV or if you know how to do Calculus or any of the other millions of things in the world that I should know about you? Are you going to let a number that has no meaning define and rule your entire life? Pause. Rewind and read that sentence again please.
What happens if you throw out the scale? What will happen? It probably depends on how far along the eating disorder road you are. If you don’t really care, then good for you, throw it out anyway. It is a piece of junk. If you feel you need to check your weight just to keep tabs, tell me, what on Earth does that mean? You’ll be able to tell if you are gaining or losing weight without a scale, because going in either direction will change the way your clothes fit. So, what is keeping tabs about? If your doctor wants to know your weight, s/he will have their own scale to weigh you. (Not that I think your doctor should be weighing you, but that’s another topic).
You can email me and tell me if you can think of one good reason to keep your scale. I would like to hear of one, because I can’t think of any one reason aside from measuring inert objects with it. Like if you want to weigh a package or your bowling ball or something. Your weight will not tell you if you have a lump on your breast. Your weight will not tell you if your heart is bad. I honestly can’t think of one good reason to have a scale in your home, except if you want to torment yourself. If you want to live a life chained to a scale and chained to a little digital read out or the spinning of that dial it is your choice. To my mind, living a life chained to a scale will continue to keep you focused on external measurements of yourself and your body. It will keep you removed from being inside your body, feeling your own body and it will ultimately NEVER help you to feel acceptance about your own body no matter what you weigh. I don’t care if you weigh 85 pounds or 585 pounds. A scale will never show you what you want it to. It will never give you love or acceptance even if it makes you happy for a brief moment when it decides to produce a lower digit. It is good for science experiments and weighing postage, but it doesn’t belong in your bathroom, in your life, in your private space fucking with your head so bad that you can’t even think straight anymore.
Just do it. Throw it away. Smash it. Get rid of it. It is worse than useless—it will drain you.
12 thoughts on “Steps To Body Acceptance #1”
You have to remember that we live in a sick, perverted world. Being overweight is considered unhealthy, but having major surgery to increase the size of your breast is ok?
I grew up in the 70’s when music was about sound, not the look of the artist. But today it’s all about what’s on the surface. As a whole, I do think we are all
paying for this stupidity by putting pressure on mostly woman, to all look the same. And this look is in my opinion becoming more and more deformed.
I know about your weight struggle, I tend to yoyo with mine. Chocolate and mexican food are my downfall. But, no doubt genentics play a part in a persons weight as well.
Someday the trend will change, I don’t know what the next trend will be, but for sure we will all try to follow it and feel the pressure once again.
I hope you enjoyed smashing your scale!
Hi Maryann! Thanks for your wonderful comment. I agree with you. We are pressured to conform to weirdness! I wish you luck in your struggle with your body. If you ever need to talk, let me know! Peace and thanks for stopping by! :) kristin
I really, really wish I could do this. Unfortunately, I still live with my family and my mom and sister refuse to throw it out. Once I live on my own, I’ll do it. But for now, I just try avoiding it as best as I can. *sighs*
Hi withlovebyli: Thanks for the comment. Grrr. I wish you could do it too. I know how it is to make allowances for living with other people. It is hard to avoid when it is sitting there in the house. Good luck. and Take care. Oh btw, your photos are completely amazing and beautiful!!!
i made strides, and put mine in the closet… under stuff… where it taunts me. i don’t know why i haven’t smashed it up & thrown it away! its like a comfort, that if i want to start returning to the ED behaviors, its right there to help me along! i am actually to the point i dont WANT to go back to that life. hmmm. where is my videocamera?
Cassie: heh. well in the closet is okay. I understand the taunting though. If you do make a video of you smashing it I can put it on my blog! hehe Well, I might first have to load it on youtube, because I don’t know if wordpress lets you upload video directly like a photo…hrmm…I’m glad you don’t want to go back to that life, and you shouldn’t. It will eat you alive (no pun intended). It is hard to break free of those chains though. Keep on it, because as you know, life is so much better without the ED. :) have a good day! :)
Thanks for the compliment on my photos, Kristin. *smiles* I hope you’re well!
I loved this article…You need to come to New Zealand and do a lecture tour,,, I’d be your promoter… :)
About the scale? I did this years ago… mind you, I am 45 this year, so my journey into self acceptance and figuring out that diets don’t work, started when I was round 34… incidentally my scale said then that I was 159 kilos which I think was my heaviest…. keep up the neat blogs… You’re the nbest xx
I just found your site today and I must say you are awesome! I have been going through a similar process in my head of late. I used to be anorexic and it’s awful how the attitudes and thoughts and behaviors like to stick around. But it’s true, the number on the scale is just a number. It has no moral value, it isn’t good or bad. I think I shall get rid of my scale now.
Hey Kristen,I found your website by youtube I was looking up Canadian accents haha and your video popped up then I went to your page.You remind me so much of me.I’m just like you. I love art and photography and I am over weight as well.I love this blog you wrote.Its so true. I have been trying to loose weight all my life thats all I ever heard is your fat and blah blah.I am doing it on my own time I work out everyday but I still eat what I want not too much of it but its working for me. I am not happy with myself though I always feel like I am being compared to other girls and I hate it:( but on another note.I dont want 2 tell you my whole life story haha but I am stuck on what to do with my life.
Lindsay! So glad you found my blog. I’m sorry you have to struggle with the whole weight thing too, but I’m glad you are coping well with it. Cheers! :) kristin