I recently wrote a blog "Why I struggle to call myself slim" , as I'm not currently as small as I was last year, and have been working to get back to where I feel happier with my body. Anyhoo, I got some really lovely feedback over on facebook, and I got permission to share:
Similarly to me in my "Struggle to call myself slim post", the lovely lady suffers from an imposter syndrome feeling:
"I went low carb about 3 months after you and have gone from a 12-14 to an 8-10 too. I'm happy with my size and weight but I'm not happy with my body fat percentage at all, and whenever someone makes a comment about how I'm slim, or I don't need to watch how I eat, I'm constantly thinking 'you don't know what I look like under my clothes' ...
I feel like an imposter posing as a slim person and one day I'm going to be found out and ostracised for having the temerity to label myself incorrectly."
It takes ages to lose the self image you've created in the mirror, and start to see a different you, but I promise you it is possible to lose it with some effort. You won't always see the old you staring back at you.
As I had been feeling a little lame about my own little step backwards in my own body journey, the following comments really hit the spot. Honestly, they made me swell.
"It's down to you! You have no idea how wide the impact of your blogging travels. Before you I'd never seen or heard of someone actually managing this sustainably. I truly and honestly wish I'd learned the science behind nutrition and human biochemistry years ago. The way I feel and the way my body responds to what I chose to fuel it with is unreal, but I wrote low carb off for years as another one of those crazy diets that people never stick to.
I think 3 years in that this is me for life now! And it's strongly influenced what I choose to feed my little girl too - she gets almonds or cubes of cheese as snacks rather than something like a packet of crisps. I was so unhappy with my body growing up and although I think to some extent it's inevitable she will be too, I want to spare her the experience of being medically overweight at least. I feel quite angry towards my own mum that she allowed me to get to obese levels as a teenager, as it's affected how I see myself my entire life. But, she didn't have the knowledge I do and it's not fair of me to blame her for feeding me almost exclusively on bread and potatoes.
Sigh. This got really long. Basically, thank you because you indirectly changed my life."
That comment reminded me of two things. That all of us have the power to influence a single person. Whether we mean to or not. That makes us all pretty powerful people.
It also reminded me of my journey, and that a slight wobble (caused by my moving house) is fine; I'm in it for the long haul. Personally, I want to look like the final photo of me in that yellow frame again, but I know I can. Because I have.
Its just some small tweaks, I haven't returned to where I started, just slipped back a small step. When you've made a forever change, you have to go easy on yourself.