Before I tell you what my girls have NEVER seen me do, I’ll tell you some of the things they HAVE seen me do.
They see me drinking freshly made juices in the morning for breakfast. They watch me get ready to go to the gym in workout gear. They see me attempting at-home workouts. They’ve been with me when I meet up with friends for coffee. They see me belly-laughing. They’ve even seen me ugly-crying. They’ve seen me the happiest of happy and the saddest of sad. And those emotions get explained to them because I want them to know why mommy is feeling the way she is. I want my girls to know that it’s ok to express themselves and it’s ok to be feeling whatever it is that they are feeling. I can only hope they will grow up wanting to share with me their range of emotions.
BUT… the one thing my daughters have NEVER seen me do is… weigh myself. On a scale.
They’ve never seen me stare down at the flashing screen and they’ve never seen my reaction to whatever the number might be that pops up.
Why have they never seen this? Most simply, because we don’t have a scale in our home. On purpose.
As a teenager and in my early 20’s, I weighed myself daily. Maybe even a few times a day. I didn’t even need to or necessarily want to, but the scale was there, in the bathroom, always inviting me to hop on. So, I would. There were times in my life where I remember feeling really down about the numbers on the screen and other times where I remember thinking ‘really? I don’t FEEL like that number’. My days would start with disappointment or elation. Based on what?! My weight?
I don’t know what changed for me along the line, but now…I don’t weigh myself. Ever. I have NO idea what number is ‘representative’ of my body right now. I have a general idea, but the number isn’t what matters to me, because I know how I FEEL and I know how I WANT to feel. My relationship with my body is no longer based on what the scale tells me. It’s extremely liberating! Believe me when I tell you that I know when it’s time to get serious and get stronger. I can tell by my energy levels that I should really make the effort to be more active. I know by how my clothing fits that I want to work on ‘tightening up’. The difference is that it’s an intrinsic motivation and I somehow feel less pressure.
My wish for my daughters, is that they listen to their bodies, the way that I have learned to. That they enjoy exercising and eating well because of how it makes them feel and that they don’t judge themselves based on a number they feel they ‘should’ be seeing when they look down.