This is what Fitbloggin felt like to me:
No, I’m kidding. It’s not the end. You know me better than that.
Anyone else find re-entry after Fitbloggin’ to be fricking hard? I sure do. After all of the
anxiety anticipation, then living that four days turned up to eleven, with a constant stream of hugs and high fives and flash bulbs and Patron self acceptance, we weren’t in the car 20 minutes when we realized we were no longer in the protective, loving fitbloggin bubble.
A few of you were with me, and helped the hashtag #fbomb38 trend for a little dot of time between 11:55 on 9/21 to 12:05 on 9/22, when I kissed 38 goodbye and dove headlong into 39. 38 tried to break me. Eff you, 38.
But 39 has already had its moments because let’s be honest, when you start out the year surrounded by several hundred brilliant, funny, caring, brave, amazeballs bloggers who ALSO come do Zumba with you, well, you’re bound to have a bit of a B-Side when you have to get into your car and drive away.
I’ve been trying to keep my head up, blogosphere, but my dive into 39 was less beautifully executed swan and more big ol’ cannonball. Once I
sobered rested up, I pulled out the laptop, chomping at the bit to catch up on the tweets and FB messages and recaps from all of you, because I didn’t do much of that while I was in the bubble.
And then I cried.
Because I looked fat.
In almost every photo I found a flaw.
And in the video I looked like I was trying to digest a basketball.
And all over again I was reminded how my inner voice just doesn’t match my outer body.
POP! Fitbloggin bubble officially burst.
I know, right? I feel like a bit of a
hotass dumbass even writing this because I spend so much time encouraging others NOT to, but it is what it is I guess. Happens to everybody, moments of doubt and insecurity. Even me.
Because losing weight is hard. And I’m overwhelmed by my life.
Today I taught class at our downtown studio. It’s an interesting mix of people that come in there. It’s partially a corporate lunch hour crowd, and partially a mix of non native English speakers/minorities/lower income folks that sort of ebbs and flows and changes from week to week.
I have kind of A Favorite who comes in pretty regularly. I mean, I love ALL my students, but this one in particular has kind of a special spot in my heart. She is a young and sweet African American woman who is married and raising a child on a very fixed income. And I am sure I’m about to use a non-pc word so please somebody correct me, but she’s a little bit slow.
The first day she came in she walked in 100 degree weather. Had no water bottle. Her clothes were well worn and her toes poked through the tops of her sneakers. She told me she saw the Zumba sign in the window over the weekend and wanted me to help her. She’s got a wedding to go to a year from now, and she wanted to lose some weight. I think she quoted me a number, somewhere close to 100 pounds.
She’ll come regularly for a few days, and then disappear for a few days. Then out of the blue I’ll get a call from her, apologizing profusely for missing class and saying she’ll be back. I get the feeling she doesn’t get much support at home and I would give her every class for free because she seems to want it so badly, but she tells me how she budgets her check once a month and keeps out the money she needs for the 10 class punch card, and she’s so determined. So I told her to keep coming, even when she’s strapped for cash, and we’ll figure it out. She bought herself some toning sticks, too, and has never forgotten her water bottle since that first day.
Today after class I went over to tell her how she’s smiling more and more in class without me having to remind her. She was sitting down and had a cold washcloth on the back of her neck. She was feeling a little lightheaded. Then she told me she’s “on a diet.”
I asked her what she’s been eating, and her response was that she’ll have a bagel and cream cheese in the morning and then nothing (nothing!) until dinner. So every now and again she gets dizzy.
Then she looked at me with those deep brown eyes and said “It’s just so hard. I’m so tired of being fat. But I just don’t know what to do. I’m overwhelmed.”
It was like looking into a mirror.
Our skin color or socioeconomic status or education or age or gender DON’T MATTER. We’re all more alike then we are different. She and I feel exactly the same on the inside.
I spent a little time with her jotting down a list of things that would be good for her to eat. We sketched out schedule so she knows to eat her meals and have a few snacks to fuel her throughout the day.
And then she said “my husband wants sloppy joes for dinner tonight, so instead of eating two, I’ll just eat one. Is that right?”
And I said yes. That is exactly right.
Here I sit, covered in new Reebok swag with books and my laptop and this whole community of people helping me, and still I’m overwhelmed. And this lovely woman in her ripped tank top and worn through shoes taught me once again that it all starts with one good choice to make one small change.
And just like that, a little piece of that Fitbloggin bubble started to reinflate.