Room for Living

Once upon a time—8 years ago to be exact—I lost about 35 pounds through diet and exercise, landing me at a svelte 100 lbs. Certain I would never again see those 35 pounds, I got rid of ALL of my larger clothes… every last stitch of them. My closet was full of nothing but tiny things to fit my newfound frame.

Fast forward three years… enter a job loss resulting in crushing depression and an inability to keep paying my $55 monthly gym membership… and the 35 pounds came back with a vengeance. When those unwanted pounds returned they brought about 35 more of their friends along for the party. I was the heaviest I’d ever been in my life. And having little money from my minimum wage, substitute job — buying clothes to fit my new fat @$$ was a challenge.

But I had no choice. The job required me to look professional so I had to have a new wardrobe. Little by little and piece by piece I bought back some key items in the larger sizes, but vowed I would get back into those smaller ones as soon as I regained my sanity and sense of self-worth.

Fast-forward another three years toward a satisfying new job in my career field, a supportive, wonderful family and the love of an amazing man and I lost 50 of those pounds again. I’m still not that teensy 100 lbs. but I am healthy for my age and height and I feel amazing by comparison.

For two years I have managed to keep it off. Well, most of it anyway… Save for a few of what I like to call the “fun” pounds. The fun pounds are the little cushion (pardon the pun) that I have decided to give myself without beating myself up or feeling like a failure. As long as I stay within that pre-determined range, I’m OK.

For what exactly are the fun pounds allocated? They are set aside for an 8-day trip up the New England coast where one may choose to eat lobster drenched in drawn butter, varieties of other deep-fried gifts of the sea, maple confections and saltwater taffy every… single… day. They are for summertime ballpark beers, festival food and autumn tailgating fare. They are for fun-size Halloween candy, Thanksgiving turkey and Christmas ham.

Fortunately, this time I did not throw away my larger clothes. Not because I have any intention of going back to Supersized Me, but because Life does happen. The fun happens as well as the stressfulness or unpredictability of everyday life. The curveballs you get thrown so then the ice cream tastes particularly good, the nights you end up working late and pizza is an easy fix or the injuries and illnesses that can wreak havoc on your daily discipline.

And it’s good to know that if the “fun” pounds come back and pay me a brief visit, I don’t have to squeeze into that smaller size and feel like I’m going to rupture my spleen or pop a rogue button. I can slip on my jeans that have a little grace in them… a little forgiveness in the waist, butt and thighs… and I can feel like I actually have some room for living.


8 thoughts on “Room for Living

  1. Billie says:

    Ahhh, I once lost my ‘fun pounds’ too, but once I got back into a happy relationship I started cooking more, thus, eating more. Now my fun pounds turned into a flippin carnival. Now I’m right back where I started, unfortunatly, I’m the part of the carnival where pig wrestling happens. In the butt of my jeans when I walk. UGH!!

  2. JT says:

    That is such a healthy attitude Joanna! I have lost nearly 100 pounds and those clothes are not in my closet any longer…I hope I never need them but hey I could always buy a couple of tents;-)

  3. You have such a great outlook on the whole “weight” issue!! By not denying yourself those simple little pleasures such as saltwater taffy and fried anything, in moderation and balance of course, is living and experiencing life. Constant denial is just setting yourself up for disappointment and an unfulfilled feeling. (I would love to be fulfilled with some lobster drenched in drawn butter. Yummm!) I like that you’re embracing your “fun pounds”!!! Of course, here in New Orleans with our abundance of life-affirming food, moderation and balance are difficult concepts, and I am thankful for the fast-metabolism gene in my DNA. I hope it never changes its mind and decides to slow down.

  4. Ugh I struggled to get to 100 for the first half of my life. Now I too am having a carnival in my clothes. There is more than just the happy pounds here. And most people still say I am skinny! I think what is wrong with their eyes. And lately I have been eating like a bear going into hibernation! And the stupid clothes dryer keeps shrinking all of my clothes.

    I admire you healthy attitude and your ability to get things back under control.

  5. I can say proudly that I have a range of sizes in my closet and am sure I am not alone in that statement! Hey you need to live a little once in a while and splurge – makes me a happier person for sure. I enjoy secret slimming panels, stretch and elastic – some of my new found friends lately!!! Live It Up & Tear It Down:)

  6. I’m a little older than you. There was a time when I couldn’t gain a pound no matter how much I ate. I have a small frame, (in other words, I as skinny) so that was a bit of a problem. I figured I’d gain weight and it would display itself in all the right places. No such luck. When I finally did gain some weight, I was pleased; but then as one year ebbed into the next, the pounds kept coming. Now, I’m a fat skinny guy. 😦

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s