How I Got Addicted To My Scale (Also, Anorexia Wasn’t Cute)

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fitness, obsession,

I am addicted to my scale.

It’s not even my scale. It’s my roommate’s scale. But still. I’ve been obsessing over numbers and not focusing on what actually matters – how I feel. I didn’t realize this until I talked to one of my good friends from school, and while I thought I was celebrating an accomplishment, she pointed out that I was obsessing.

Obsessing is not something new to me. I obsess over music, over problems, over my own issues, over TV shows, over decisions, and now over my weight.

I used to weigh about 55 pounds more than I do now. Two years ago, I weighed 195 pounds. I’m down to around 140 now, and it’s made a huge difference in how I feel physically, what I can do, how I live.

It hasn’t made a huge difference in how I feel about myself. I still panic about my clothes, about my weight, about how I look. People treat me differently than they did 55 pounds ago. I get different attention from different people. People expect different things from me.

The other day, a client was delivering boxes to my work, and I said I’d give him a hand. He looked at me, in my high heeled boots and my skinny jeans, and said quizzically “You sure? They weigh about 45 pounds…” and then stared in disbelief as I, in my high heeled boots and my skinny jeans, grabbed a box and said “I did CrossFit, I can do that in heels.”

I know I’m strong. I lift. I run–or, more often, read books on my kindle at a fast walk. I do these things regularly, and have made them into a part of my lifestyle. I don’t lift 5 pound brightly coloured dumbbells; I lift heavy weights. I have muscles. I’m strong.

I don’t feel strong. Sometimes I feel insecure, and sometimes I feel weak, and sometimes I feel fat. I feel like my clothes don’t fit me properly, and I feel like I don’t look good, and I feel like I’m not pretty.

It’s hard to see something so completely different from what I hear from people. My boyfriend, my wonderful, amazing boyfriend, makes a point of telling me I’m beautiful every single day. Usually several times. My friends are complimentary and supportive. My mother is worried about me.

I’m working on it. And for the next week or so, I’m going to try not to weigh myself. We’ll see how that goes. When I don’t weigh myself, I triple check everything I’m eating and wonder if I’m gaining weight. I didn’t used to be like this. But when I didn’t weigh myself for a week and I gained a couple of pounds, I blamed it on not weighing myself daily. So maybe it’s time to give it a break.

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