Many of you “met” me years ago through my Lynn’s Weigh blog, the space where I wrote about (mostly) weight and all the issues surrounding it (the good, the bad, the recipes, the exercise). I believed then, as I do now, that there is no easy fix for the physical and emotional complexities of weight, both gaining and losing.
I also believed, and I don’t anymore, that I would always be in control of my physical and emotional world if I regularly (obsessively?) did ABC. In doing so, I would maintain the results I’d worked so hard for: a (too) thin body and the (faux) happiness that it brings. I believed I had to be a certain way – the Lynn’s Weigh – in order to have a voice in the subject of weight, and when the physical changes and the weight gain started about four years ago, I felt I’d let everyone down – my readers, my children, my boyfriend, my doctors (some of whom kept the People magazine in my folder to inspire other patients). But mostly I’d let myself down.
And so these last 2½ years since absorbing Lynn’s Weigh into Zen Bag Lady and not writing, I’ve been quietly trying to make peace with my physical and emotional changes without laying blame, feeling guilty, or being angry and frustrated.
And the results? I fail miserably sometimes on all points. But I don’t fail all the time. In fact, I fail less today than I did a month ago, and less a month ago than six months ago, and less six months ago than a year ago. In widening my field of vision, I was supported by and found comfort in the words of former weight loss bloggers Jeannette Fulda and Shauna Reid, both of whom wrote pieces in 2017 that spoke directly to me.
In April, Jeannette wrote: “These days the internet seems like a much more misogynistic, judgmental place, like a flood of tourists have swarmed the local bar and you never know what asshole is going to show up, start a fight and then breeze off, never to be seen again.”
We see this all the time everywhere these days, way more than when we all started blogging in the 2000s. Some people have no filter, no compassion, and no common sense. Words hurt, especially mean and hurtful words that come from some anonymous little puke hiding behind a computer screen. People say to ignore it, but I’m not emotionally built that way. I never have been and I never will be. I’m fine with constructive criticism that comes from a place of love and concern, but it takes me an inordinate amount of time to unfeel the pain of hurtful and untrue words. While I didn’t have many trolls on Lynn’s Weigh and none on Zen Bag Lady, “coming out” like this, with the (not so surprising) revelation that I’m not the same person I was 2, 5 or 12 years ago, might cause some people to gloat or to throw my past words in my face. But I’m going to take that risk because speaking up for change rather than staying silent and hidden is worth it. As Jeannette reminded me and everyone else, “people have the right to change”.
In September, Shauna wrote: “What I struggle with is contradictory. First there are the feelings of failure for not remaining the After photo, like that invalidates any value of the book (The Amazing Adventures of Dietgirl) entirely. I wrote about the After photo struggles on my blog for awhile, then slinked away from the topic. I avoided people and places. There’s been so much shame and fraudy feels… Then there is the part of me that is so bloody done hiding and ready to make peace with it all.”
Sometimes I look at my After photos with a bit of regret, but I don’t regret the journey one bit. Like Shauna and Jeannette, I hope my words helped people on their own journeys. Gaining weight after my journey has been humbling, especially given the myriad physical shitstorm that’s been my life the last several years. But looking at the Afters also reminds me that nothing is permanent.
I don’t owe the Internet an apology. However, I would like to continue the conversation with all of you in this different chapter of my (and your!) life. You’re not the same folks you were 2, 5, 12 years ago, either, right?
So what’s new with you? What has changed? What have you held on to? Leave a comment, and please don’t be bothered by the fact that I have to “approve” (or not) all comments. While I’ve learned I am not in complete control of my physical or emotional life, I can definitely control what gets said on my blog 🙂
Also, I dusted off my old Twitter account. I’m @TrixieB1963 (after my beloved childhood book heroine, Trixie Belden), if any of you want to stalk me and I you.
Thanks for being here again. And welcome if this is your first trip here! Namaste.
7 thoughts on “Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes. Turn and Face…What’s Changed. It’s OK.”
I’m so glad you are back, letting your voice be heard. None of us are the same as we were back in the day, and like you, while I look at my after pictures with a bit of longing (and a lot of admiration, damn I looked good!), I’m accepting that I don’t have it in me to be so stringent every damn day in order to continue looking like that. But the journey was worth it, and I’m much healthier than I was when I started, plus I’m happy. It’s all good. 🙂
That’s a really good point. It was getting too stressful to be so stringent. I felt like I was not really living like I wanted to.
Love you Diva. Yes we have changed physically, and somewhat mentally… but we are the same strong women that deserve to be happy.
I am very glad to see you writing again.
Love the topic! #truth!
It calls out to me.
First thing I hear as I start typing is the Serenity Prayer. There certainly seasons in our life where we have to adjust.
I had great success loosing the toxic weight I gained from the abusive job I was in previously utilizing Young Living products that are in fact the only line I support as an Internal Medicine PA.
That said after loosongbthe weight, my life became not my own fir a while again …SEASONS change. So now it’s time to readjust and refocus for me. So I have a could extra pounds I will reloose for me. To that end I restarted my Young Living plan and am headed off to an 11th step retreat at Hazelden tomorrow!!! Nothing like a quiet walk in the woods in Center City, MN at -20 degrees lol…
I learned a lot about the ups and downs of weight loss and the seasons of life from my patients …. soooooo much more than med school. Life is for real and these seasons aren’t always of our choosing.
Even those seasons back in high school right? Go Falcons!
Luv ya girl. Happy New Year
I’m so glad to hear from you, Lynn! And also, woohoo to Trixie Beldon as your childhood book heroine–I LOVED her too!! Yes, I too agree with that “stringent” word. But I am so glad of all the things I learned about food and exercise, and that I can still use most of that to stay as healthy as possible, even as I age faster than I want to 🙂
I’m so happy to see that you have decided to blog again. I always enjoyed hearing what you had to say – not because I cared about what your weight was. I just think that you are a really good writer! I look forward to hearing about what’s going on with you and what you’re thinking about.
I think I gave a little squee when I found that you were blogging again, Lynn! I have missed reading what you have to say and hoped that time away from blogging was giving you the chance to re-balance your life. Change is certainly inevitable, and I would do well to loosen my grasp on whatever “after” picture lives in my head. I do also read Shauna and Jeannette’s blogs and have just as much to learn from their journeys now as I did when I was actively losing weight. We are all SO much more than our size! Great to “see” you again 🙂