April 5, 2012

the in-between

Recently I had to go try on a bridesmaid dress.  I was nervous about this, given my last bridesmaid experience was not very wonderful because I hated how the dress looked on me and I couldn't sit in it and all of it left me more emotionally scarred than anything like that should normally do to a person.  Plus, I still have a hard time with dresses in general, because well, I do.

I went to the bridal salon all by myself.  The dress is a strapless gown with pockets - it was very cute, very stylish.  And so nothing I would have picked out.  I was sure it was going to look horrible on me as I assume about most every dress.

I held my breath as I looked in the mirror.  And I didn't hate what I saw.  The reflection staring back at me looked pretty.  The dress looked nice on her - really nice actually.

It was flattering and I could sit down in it and everything.  I even sent a message to my cousin (now Bride-cousin) that it rocked and I totally loved it.  The dress showed where my body has changed some in the last few months.  I'm the hardest on myself - but I noticed.  I could see it.  I could tell there was a change.

I'm in this in-between place right now.  I'm at the point where people are starting to notice that I've lost some weight and they are starting to ask questions about what I'm doing or how many pounds I've lost.  All of that feels very triggering and I'm trying to stay grounded in it all because this is SO not just about losing weight, or even getting healthy or cooking light or exercising.  It's about learning to live without this addiction.  Learning how to be more dependent on God and less on me and my familiar ways of coping.

My story here is so complex.  How are you supposed to be kind to yourself and to the other inquiring person, when what's true is that you are in recovery for a nearly life-long binging disorder?  And what do you say when you're really just taking it one day at a time and trying to take the best care of you and your body that you know how?  All of this looks like it needs to look for me - no one else.  Just me.

This is the place, like so many times, I've given up.  Something - like perhaps a bridesmaid dress dilemma- might discourage me and wipe me out and I'll return to old habits.  I'm aware that if I keep going and keep on doing what I've been doing that I will have gotten farther than I. EVER. HAVE. EVER.  It's a big deal and I feel both nervous and excited.  I feel confident and at the same time, evil is whispering in my ear that I won't get there and I can't do this.

There is a point that I hope to reach on the scale.  I am not far from it.  And if and when I get to that number it will feel huge because I haven't seen that number as my weight in six, very long years.

It's hard though.  To still love myself the way I am right now.  This work in progress.  This awkward in-between place where I am in the middle and not yet where I want to be. 

But I'm learning to.  I'm building on what is good, what I'm doing well, where I am making progress.  I'm accepting the awkward, unfinished parts of me as they are.  Like the woman in the bridesmaid dress that was staring back at me.

It was me.

Not yet where I want to be, but very much on my way there.


  1. That was very well written Jenn. Saying it's about learning to live without the addiction. You are facing it every day and it's hard but you are facing it and not ignoring it and you are changing. You are changing from the inside out. Be patient with yourself. You are moving forward. Good job my friend. You are lovely.

  2. so happy for you that you were able to look at the mirror and be proud of yourself! keep it up, you are doing an incredible job!

  3. Lovely! I swear food is such a hard addiction to break! It's everywhere and easily available and so IN YOUR FACE. You're doing a great job :)

  4. I am sooooo proud of you babe!! Keep up the good work and the fight...you are victorious..right here with you through it all..

  5. give me a J, give me a E, give me a N, give me another N, what have you got???? awesome, beautiful, amazing!!

    Thanks for sharing your progress and enjoy wearing that dress!!


  6. So awesome!! You are so inspirational! Keep up the amazing work!

  7. i love it!!! WISH I COULD SHOW U MY FACE RIGHT NOW!!!

  8. You can do it! Since spring break I have cheated on my diet so much, and I had finally gotten back on the scale and saw I had gained 10 pounds, oops. SO I finally said ohhh gotta get back on track.Thankfully new wieght come off very quickly! Never give up, and know that it will eventually come off, even if its only a little at a time.