so much more important than a number

I've been struggling so much lately with my body. Actually, I've been struggling with it since giving birth. I had 9 months of pregnancy that rapidly changed my body. I had twins. Then, in one quick c-section and a couple weeks of recovery, I was left with what would be my new body. I've struggled to accept it ever since. 

I was thinking of not even putting this out there; the fact that I'm struggling. I thought maybe people would think I need to get over myself. I thought people would think it's such a conceited and selfish thing to be so caught up in. And then I thought about it some more...and thought about how weird this world of ours is. It's so weird that SIZE is such a focus of virtually our entire lives. Why is it such a huge deal?

We're all so concerned with weight. With how big we are, how big everyone else is. We feel like we need to be smaller. In many countries, bigger is better; bigger is a sign of wealth, prosperity, health. Weight is so damn stupid. Size is just as dumb. As a teenager, as a woman, now as a mother...the freaking number on the scale has been this constant nag in my life. Always in the back of my head, staring at me, just waiting for me to change it. If the number changes, everything will change, right?

I weigh 15 pounds more than I did when I got pregnant. I wear the same size pants (a 12), although more pants have stretch in them these days which might make up for any size difference. I wear a size Large shirt, because I'm more comfortable with loose fitting clothes around my stomach-where I hold the remainder of extra skin and fat from growing two humans at once.

Really, I'm not THAT much bigger than I was. I keep thinking if I just lose that last 15 pounds it'll be better. But will it? Probably not. There will always be something, right?

While writing this post, I had a major ah-ha moment. And it's this:
I'm my own worst critic. It's impossible not to compare yourself to everyone else you see who has had a kid, and has seemed to bounce right back. But we don't know their full story. As far as I know, maybe I look like that as well. To everyone else, I could be one of those moms. One of those moms who have seemingly bounced back and look great after having twins, although I don't feel that way. And maybe they don't feel great about themselves either.

I started out this year with a very specific goal to lose weight. Well, I continued on this goal since pretty much as long as I can remember, we always want to lose a couple of pounds, right? I'm now realizing what a waste of my precious time worrying about pounds is. I'm done.

Well, I can't promise I'm never going to stand sideways in front of the mirror again, flexing and releasing my abdominal muscles, seeing how many weeks pregnant my belly still looks. I can't promise I won't ever catch myself wishing I was the same size I used to be as I flip through old photos of myself. I can't promise I won't have fat days where not a single thing I own seems to fit right.

But I can promise I'm going to work on caring about things more important than a number.

I promise to start focusing on how I feel, and why I'm feeling that way. Am I feeling bloated and huge? Maybe I should drink more water, or not eat that 2nd slice of pizza if I know it's going to make me feel that way. Am I feeling jiggly and flabby? Maybe I should pop in a work out dvd or go for a long walk. Nothing like sore muscles to make you feel a little bit better about all that jiggle.

I promise to work on admiring the beautiful things about my appearance when I look in a mirror, instead of dissecting all of my perceived flaws. I promise to work on not comparing myself to a single other person.

The story of my life is told with my body, in all of its curves and dimples, in each spider vein and stretch mark.

All of the springs I've spent with my face toward the sun, absorbing the heat and feeling so grateful for this life are told in the freckles that heavily dust any surface of my skin that has seen sunlight.

The years I spent playing volleyball, all of the drills and lifting weights, all of the years of practices are told in my strong, broad shoulders.

And those 9 months of transformation, where I rearranged my body and my organs to fit two other lives inside of me are told in the curve of my hips and the extra padding in my thighs and belly. The part of my body I'm least comfortable with is the part of my body that has done the most significant thing I'll ever do- and that's so much more important than a number.

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