I was thinking this morning as I walked in to the Weight Watchers meeting I was about to observe that when people see me now (outside of a WW setting) - they just see me as the person standing in front of them: a healthy, confident, outgoing, sort of slim person, who enjoys going to the gym, Spinning and running. They have absolutely no idea how far I have come to be the person I have today. They have no concept of the "old me."
This just hit me this morning - yes I am a tad slow on the uptake okay - you would think I would've realized this grand concept a long time ago.
But, I think I am just so immersed in my own journey, chatting with so many of the same friends and family that saw me at the beginning that I forget when a new person meets me on the street - I just look like me. To them, there is no "old me" or "new me"! It is just a crazy concept to me.
It is like starting with a clean slate, yet for some reason I have been finding the need to explain to people that I haven't always looked like this. I want to share how far I have come. I want to tell them how I still struggle to overcome not one but two eating disorders on a daily basis, but I do it. I want to thrust that darn "before" picture in their face and show them how far I have come.
Why do I feel the need? Why can't I just embrace the new me fully?
Well, there is still a lot of emotional baggage I need to work through I think. The same thing that many people who take on this roller coaster we call "weight loss" need to do. It isn't something that happens overnight.
I mean, it is super easy when I am at work for people to understand and appreciate what I have done to be where I am now. But when I just ran to the grocery store, the person ringing me up probably just thought I really like fruit. :P Whereas, I want to share with her my life story. Unnecessary.
But, I think for me. I want to explain myself to people. I think it stems from when I was really overweight and I would look at the skinny girls at the gym and just be envious. I would look at them and think "Why Can't I Be Naturally Skinny?" But you know what? I don't know where they have come from. They might be in the same boat I was once in. They might've started out at my weight or heavier.
Why was I so quick to pass judgement on them and snark "Why Don't You Just Eat A Hamburger?" to the size 0 woman on the treadmill. I was obviously in the mindset where I thought every skinny person was naturally that way and I projected my unhappiness on to them.
But, then on that fateful November 2, 2009 - I took my life into my own hands. Over the course of this journey, I have learned to look at people MUCH differently.
It's funny. I now look at every person walking down the street and wonder what their story is. I am not as quick to judge the other people at the gym because you know what - I don't want them judging me. I am turning my snarky comments into positive ones: "Wow, that person is running so fast on the treadmill - that is awesome."
I don't know other people's journeys to where they got the place they are in their life. I am happy seeing people as people and learning about where they want to go. I love hearing about what you have all accomplished. This social media is a great forum to share our highs and our lows.
So when you are out and about today, take the time to change one snarky comment you might make about someone into a positive one ... because you don't know how hard they have worked to be where they are...