Sat with Nat · Uncategorized

I won’t be happier when I lose weight. 

It’s a flippant comment from an acquaintance when I say I’m taking part in the wellness pilot at work. I’m a little bummed out it is largely weightloss focused. They reply that I’ll be happier when I lose some weight. 

Oh dear. They don’t know I’m a feminist killjoy. That I define health by metrics I can control: the steps I take, the choices I make rather than my weight or even my blood pressure. Sure. I can influence my weight & blood pressure but really I control other things like movement and food. 

The acquaintance doesn’t know I lost 40 lbs last year and gained 10 back since I started my new job. Or that since I started tracking my food carefully I’ve lost those same 10 lbs but also started obsessing about my food intake, steps taken and my daily weigh in. I’m teetering on the brink of a precipice I know too well. 

This is all going through my mind as I reply “Gee, I don’t know, I pretty happy right now.”

I’m pretty happy right now is the best thing I can say. I want to say not one woman I know is happy about her weight because our culture teaches us to constantly criticize our bodies, identify our “trouble areas”, lose those last stubborn pounds or worry about “skinny face“. I can’t win the oppression game so I try to opt out whenever I can. 

So no matter what my weight I will likely be critical of my body to some extent. 

As for actually being happy, I really can’t imagine being happier. My new paid work is gloriously contained Monday to Friday. My colleagues are lovely. So many folks checked in on me this week when I got back from being sick I realized how welcoming my workplace is. 

I have great kids and a loving partner. We live with giant ridiculous dogs. I have great friends and neighbours who help me when I need it. 

My body gets me where I need to go and I’m gearing up my training for awesomeness next cycling season. 

I won’t be happier when I lose weight because I’m perfectly happy right now 🙂

10 thoughts on “I won’t be happier when I lose weight. 

  1. This is fantastic and what a great attitude. By the way, you look great and have an awesome smile.

    I’m in agreement with you on the numbers bit. If I had to count my macros, weigh my food and watch my intake, I’d be unhappy and end up with an obsessive compulsive disorder relating to the above. I know this because I have been there and it didn’t make me any happier. It made me anorexic but that’s another story and one that I won’t bore anyone with right now. You are already looking forward to next season, that’s inspiring. Is their aim to get a short term fix at any cost? Perhaps they’d be better off doing something crazy like outward bound type stuff or kayaking. I believe that if the focus rests solely on the numbers as opposed to that being a by-product of their goal then it automatically alienates and makes people feel uncomfortable. You are happy and that’s all anyone could ask for. You are active and well balanced. You have a loving family and a good job. Anything else is a bonus.

  2. I love this. I am obsessed with losing weight (I used to be skinnier, and then I got sick, got real skinny, and then gained weight that I haven’t been able to shift no matter what I do. I’ve tried eating little and exercising more, I’ve tried eating more and exercising the same, I’ve tried balancing everything and cutting out sugar) and I’m just obsessed with the fact that I’m not ‘skinny’. The thing is, I know logically I’m probably not fat, or unhealthy, but it’s a bad obsession. Reading your blog reminds me there are better things to focus on; and even when I was fifty kilos I wasn’t happy; I always thought something was wrong with me. What’s important is my health; eating right and working out and doing things the RIGHT way. Thank you. So inspiring!

  3. I love the twist in this post. At first, I thought it was the usual (we’re NEVER happier when we lose weight and that’s usually interpreted as “we’ll be just as miserable then”). But I love the “I’m perfectly happy right now, thank you very much” that you end on! Thanks for a great post.

  4. Me too
    Sometimes I get some insecure little voice pipe up to say I’m only satisfied because I feel good.
    But I know happiness has nothing to do with how I look and if I start to think it does again I’m on dangerous ground.

  5. Great post! I have gotten many “well-meaning” comments from my colleagues in the past. I have always felt taken aback by their comfort in leveling assessments and evaluations and judgements about my body.
    Amanda Lynn

  6. This post brought me so much joy. Through your posts you always remind me to love myself as I am and I appreciate that so much. Thank you. 😀

  7. It’s a refreshing change to think of one’s body as something that does stuff, rather than something that is looked at!

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