Thursday, January 22, 2009

Breaking Point

For want of a more eloquent description, I'm having an "Aaarghhh!!!" Day. I feel ready to explode! Literally! My dress is too tight. My favourite work dress, that I am wearing today, is pulling across the chest and is restrictive around my thighs. The dress that I bought in H&M in London during the summer, and fell in love with straight away. The dress I wear when I need a pick-me-up because it makes my waist look teeny-tiny. And now it looks misshapen on my body. The 'Me' of 6 months ago would not have been seen in public in a dress this close to potentially being ill-fitting. Old Me would look at women in clothes too small for them (the ones with muffin-tops etc.) and wonder why did they not just buy a size bigger. And now I know why. Because they're not supposed to be this size!!

It didn't start out this way. I was a UK6 through my teens, then a UK8 going into University, and UK10 leaving! I've fluctuated between 8 and 10 over the last few years, depending on the time of the sporting seasons, and now I am sitting at my desk, in a UK10 dress, and I can't breathe properly. I think I have finally reached breaking point.

I have a problem.

It's not going to fix itself. I feel like an addict that's been trying to wean myself off a harmful substance. It's not working. I need to go cold turkey. I can have a little bit of willpower, or flexible rules, or treats every now and then. Because "now and then" becomes Now. And Then More.

I used to smugly smirk to myself when people would complain about weight loss being "SOooo hard". Clearly, I thought, they just don't have my strength and willpower. I was so sure of myself. I never thought I'd become just like every other woman complaining about their figure. I thought I was different. So confident in my ability to avoid all temptations and train multiple times a day, I never saw the possiblity that my willpower could be finite.

Even over the last 6 months, as I've seen my curves develop, and hips expand, I was still sure that at some point, I'd reach a point where my willpower would kick back in of its own accord and I'd find myself rejecting sugary treats and choosing to wake an hour early to fit in some cardio. It's not going to happen though. Not by itself.

But my life has changed since I stopped the restrictions. I've gained a social circle and regular dates with friends, usually revolving around food in some way, shape or form. The Old Me would have avoided all of this. Would have preferred to go training rather than subject herself to unnecessary temptation. The workplace is a minefield of boxes of chocolates, home-baking and vending machines. Old Me would have easily said No, and felt ostracised for following the courage of her convictions. New Me likes fitting in. Likes doing the same things as the other girls. Likes missing training to have tea and biscuits with a girl friend. Likes missing training to meet an old school-friend for dinner. Likes having a semblance of Being Normal.

Can I balance the two? Or do I have to choose between the paths of a

Slim-yet-Solo-Shivers

* versus *

Sociable-and-Slightly-Squidgy-Shivers.....

Something has to give.

8 comments:

wee-h said...

Im so fealing this right now, i too have done the 6-8-10 and + thing with my figure. I find if you have something to moan about then other girls (in particular) seem to like you more. Smaller size + no squidgyness = Ostracised. I wish people werent like this tho...

Tricia said...

Is there any way you could have the best of both worlds? Like having tea (no biscuits) with a friend, or bringing in a plate of fruit to work and only training once a day?

last year's girl said...

I joined a gym quite recently, cut back on snacks and made a bit more of an effort to keep fit... I've never had much of an interest in training, but when I went from my standard size 10 to a 14 almost overnight I got a bit of a shock and have just had to teach myself that discipline that you used to always find easy. I'm pretty curvy generally, and will never be a size 6, but now I'm back in my 10 jeans I feel so much more confident and healthy. It's baby steps with me, but I'm getting there.

Shivers said...

hello wee-h! :) it's strangely comforting that others have felt this too, i say it's strange because I wouldn't wish this on anyone! It is a pity that we feel more included when we are unhappy with ourselves. Us girls can be SO mean! :(

Tricia, lovely idea, but my girls are fairly quick to spot anybody trying to "be good". Declining a cookie, or choosing a salad over chips is a big red flag! :) Sometimes I'm ok with that attention, other times I'm glad of the excuse to be naughty! I think I need to find sneaky treats that look sinful, but are actually healthy! I do have a big problem with controlling the amount of treats I have though. It's that Now & Then problem. once I start, it's hard to stop. It's all or nothing.

Hello LastYear'sGirl! I can totally relate to that shock, I gained the best part of a stone over the summer last year, (by acting like it was Christmas every day!) I feel like I've become a different person. I actually have memories which feel like my images from my Pre-Fat Days! I've come to that same realisation that I'll never be a size 6 either, but I think I can be that 8/10 again. My Mum keeps telling me there are no "shoulds" in life. So I'm trying not to say I Should be in shape, and instead say I CAN be in shape. Baby steps is right... :)

Sagan said...

You can have balance! It's tricky but even just seeing that it goes back and forth shows that you're capable of achieving a good and healthy balance.

tokaiangel said...

I hear ya. For what it's worth I think life is like this - our weight fluctuates depending on what we're doing, where we are, how we're feeling, as well as the usual factors like age.

I have the same problem in loving to socialise but not wanting the extra calories. There are a few ways round it - meet for coffee instead of lunch, or go somewhere healthy. I met my friend for sushi on Sunday and ate even less than I would have done at home, without feeling even slightly deprived. With drinking I just tend to take the car everywhere. I'm everybody's best friend when I'm the designated driver! And going out and not drinking used to REALLY bother me, but it's actually not a problem now.

And nobody who can get into a size 10 dress is allowed to call themselves squidgy, that rule goes for you and me. If I can't call myself those kinds of words then goddamit you can't either!!

TA x

Shivers said...

Sagan, I hope so! My Mum (smart woman) says that Awareness of a problem is the first step to finding a solution. So I suppose the fact that I can feel the difference is a good sign! All is not lost!

TA, I had to giggle when I read your comment. You put a massive smile on my face. Thanks a million babes! xx

Charlotte said...

I'm so terribly bad at balance. All I can offer you is my sympathy - which you have in spades! I can so relate to the too-tight clothes syndrome.