The Scale

A few weeks back I wrote a post titled Food Affects My Marriage. With it I got a tremendous outpouring of love and support for which I am truly grateful. I believe that a big part of conquering our struggles is admitting it to others. In doing so I’ve heard from many of you who share the very same struggle. It was more common than I realized.

One common denominator has been that we all have our own form of struggle, and we are not meant to go it alone.

After writing that post I had one of the best days I have ever had. There is something about sharing struggle that releases you from some of it. I’m not saying I still wouldn’t like to eat cake, but I am saying I feel like I’m on the right track. I told you I would write through this and share my journey with you, and today was day twenty-two of my journey and writing through it.

Here’s my Day Twenty-two entry:

I got on the scale this morning after being away for almost a week. I laid in bed feeling a bit paralyzed questioning if I should get on the scale today. I was afraid of what it might say. What if I gained back the little bit I had lost? What if I gained back what I had lost and then gained even more? Could I handle it? I took a deep breath and decided I would start over if this turned out to be the case. Could I start over? I had to remind myself that this is about getting healthy with my relationship with food, and no matter what the scale said, I had stayed in control and that was a victory, even if a stupid number on a scale didn’t reflect that victory.

It was a victory!

I pulled myself out of bed, walked out into the kitchen, while passing my husband announced, “I’m going to weigh myself,” and headed to the scale in the garage. I got on the scale with my eyes closed and “bravely” opened them.

I had not gained weight.

I had dropped one quarter of a pound.

I felt so relieved. It’s the journey that matters and to find balance and to get healthy with food and the scale. I can’t be afraid of the scale. It is an object. It can’t love me or ridicule me, and yet, I’ve given it the power to do both.

Scale down: I love you. I can conquer the world.

Scale up: You loser. No one will ever love you. You can’t even keep weight off. Just give up, you can’t do anything.

How demoralizing is that? How unhealthy is that? Giving the scale so much power.

A scale – a mechanical device! I’ve given control of me over to a mechanical device. I climb on asking it to love me. Asking it to affirm me. Asking it to “measure” my worth. Hogwash! This is absurd! I’m quite sure this is one definition of insanity. Doing the same thing over and over hoping for a different outcome. This cycle needs to change. I think I need to remind myself before I get on a scale that whatever that number is, it does not define me. I am worth far more than a number. I am unique and wonderfully made.

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”

(Psalm 139:14)

I am wonderfully made. I am unique and sculpted by God. I am one of a kind and God made me to be exactly who I am. And what God made is good.

I need to soak that up.

During this journey I am discovering many people struggle with the same issues as I do with food. This morning while watching a famous, and hugely successful award winning song writer talk about her struggle with food, on Oprah Winfrey’s Super Soul Sunday, this was confirmed. She claimed she had worked out many challenges in her life but has not been able to work out a healthy relationship with food. Either she was dieting or gaining weight. She added that daily she struggles through questions such as “what will I eat for lunch?” and “what will I eat for dinner?” and “should I have a protein shake for dinner because I ate a big lunch?” and remains overly conscience about food continually. You would think this person was overweight, but no, she was quite thin. You would also think these were questions and struggles of a young person, but no, she was beyond retirement age.

For many a struggle with food is a lifelong challenge. Others who have addictions can stop. The drug addict can take their last drug. The alcoholic can take their last drink. One can stop gambling or engaging in extramarital sex. But those of us who struggle with food cannot stop eating. It’s the cruelest form of addiction. I am determined to get control of food. It must be possible.

Tomorrow will be twenty-three days and I will stay on course today and make it to tomorrow—in control—one hour at a time.

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