Not surprisingly to a fat guy, this is my third time writing about an arch-nemesis – The Scale. One huge goal is to turn The Scale from a villain into an invisible bit player in my life.
Most of my life has been with The Scale in one of three ways. The first is avoiding it altogether. What better way of not dealing with a villain than just staying away? If I don’t step on you, you don’t exist.
The second type of relationship with The Scale is as validation. If I’m doing well, then The Scale is the ultimate say in my progress. This only makes sense since the first question from “society” is, “How much have you lost?” If the people want to know, then I better have the answer.
The final way The Scale plays in my life is a pure devil mocking me with a constant reminder of failed attempts to shed my physical fat. The Scale haunts me every single time I get ready to shower. The Scale whispers to step on it, then, if ignored, shouts taunting jabs daring me to just try and walk away. The Scale spends most of the time this way in my life and it is time to change.
What The Scale does not know is that those numbers it so proudly displays do not define me. When I was 256 pounds, I was relatively the same person as when I was 176. Sure, I was lighter and in better shape. Sure, people treated me differently and I got this false sense of hope. However, I was no dumber or lazier when I was 256. Thin people thought I was but they were flat-out wrong.
The Scale does not know that the numbers are only that – numbers. The Scale is now the scale. The numbers are numbers and only one small marker of progress. When I step on the scale, I k now I am only trying to figure out if I need to tweak the way I’m living. I no longer panic over gaining a half-pound. I no longer put too much emphasis on losing a half-pound.
The scale is barely visible to me. I have to set a reminder to step on it so I can get a sense of where I’m at. I’m much more concerned now with living my life, not finding validation in a number so I have an answer for society’s main question to fat people losing weight. I’m much more concerned with how my clothes fit and not being out of breath going up a flight of stairs. I’m much more concerned with being able to get on the floor and play with my one-year-old. I’m much more concerned with being able to go on a long hike with my older kids. I’m much more concerned with feeling good day in and day out so I can contribute more to my family and the world around me.
That number box that sits in the bathroom is not capable of giving me the answer of how to make friends with my mental fat. That number box does not have the answer of how to become healthy. That number box is only a tool to use to help me understand one small part of the progress I am making. I don’t hate that number box anymore and now it really cannot define me.