I don’t like to talk about dieting, even if someone else brings it up. It has been an uncomfortable topic for me mostly because if I try to relate to it, I get the whole, “Oh my god, shut up. You don’t need to diet!” They genuinely get annoyed by me putting in my two cents. There are so many reasons why I hate when someone says that to me. First of all, it makes me feel stupid. Secondly, they don’t know my body like I do.
The only person who knows the inner workings of my insides is me. Like many other women, I know when I’m getting my period a good week before it happens. It’s just like how the air changes when there’s a storm coming, and you feel it rumbling in your gut even before it happens. My childhood dog used to eat the grass in the front lawn like a maniac right before a storm. It’s the same idea.
And nobody knows how my body reacts to food like I do.
As a teenager, I could head over to TGI Fridays and eat mozzarella sticks, a cheeseburger and fries, and an ice cream sundae afterwards, and that was just dinner. It took a lot of effort for me to gain any weight. My entire high school career I was 90 pounds and couldn’t even donate blood no matter how much I wanted to. I used to have a best friend who was overweight, and she always made me feel inferior and that I couldn’t help because what would I know, right? Then a shift changed in the universe: college happened. I can’t eat like that anymore. I’d say that’s pretty normal for anybody. I especially noticed my weight gain when I studied abroad. I traveled so much nearly every weekend, trying new foods and eating a lot of food on-the-go that I came back ten pounds heavier than when I left. I blame Italy for most of that.
So now, here I am, in my early to mid twenties, and I’m not happy with my body. But, like I stated before, I don’t announce to people that I’m on a diet because who wants to be the Debbie Downer? I don’t tell anyone because I’m pretty tired of how people react. I’m not overweight. I’m average. However, I am pretty short standing at 5’1”, so even the slightest bit of weight gain is noticeable. I’m going to tell you my reason for having a goal for myself, and it’s going to sound a little nutty to some of you.
I want to have kids. Not now, but I’d say in five years, it’s a possibility for me. It seems like forever away, but it’s really not.
I don’t want to look like a Victoria’s Secret model (well, that couldn’t hurt), but I’d just like to be comfortable so that when the time comes to grow another human inside of me and the doctor says to gain thirty pounds, I’m going to be okay with that. Right now, I’d laugh hysterically and ask if they are crazy. With the way my body reacts to eating a cheeseburger, my body will blow up like a balloon if I have to gain 30 pounds plus a baby. Does that make me selfish? Maybe. But that’s because I have no intention of having a baby right now.
Just because someone diets doesn’t mean they think they are fat. I don’t think I’m fat. I’m literally just trying to prepare my body, mind, and soul for the future child I give birth to.
Which means I cannot afford to gain any more weight. Period. If I want to be happy and healthy, I need to prepare now, especially if I plan to have more than one kid.
Another major reason for my diet control is I have a long family history of heart attacks and high blood pressure on my dad’s side of the family. Which means monitoring the way I eat. Why not start a habit now rather than wait for a big health risk in twenty years to get my priorities straight? It’s the first thing doctor’s start asking me about the second they look at my paperwork during my check-ups.
Is it an excessive diet? No, not really. But snacking on potato chips and eating pizza every night for dinner is not an option for me. Exercising regularly is a must. I splurge every once in a while. Like this past Saturday when I went to Hooters and shoved boneless wings in my face along with a cheesecake. But I will be paying for that during this whole week.
There are so many celebrities and inspirational memes telling you to love yourself and the body God gave you. I get that, I totally do. But there’s also nothing wrong with improving yourself to your own standards. Just because Demi Lovato says to love your body, doesn’t mean I shouldn’t strive for a better lifestyle.
I’m just tired of the misconception that people who are considered “thin” and “fit” are not allowed to have an opinion on diet control and weight loss. Everyone’s bodies work differently and they change throughout the years. Next time you have a friend who you consider thin talk about dieting and exercising, hear her out. There’s a chance she’s not trying to sound like an asshole.