What do I mean why does the scale weigh so much? I must mean why does it tell me I weigh so much. But no- I mean why does the scale carry so much weight in my life? The scale controls my moods, my wardrobe, my plan for the day and sometimes whether I sleep or not. I realize this sounds completely ridiculous but it is the truth. I have tried hiding the scale from myself or having someone hide it for me. One- I always find it. Two- it doesn’t work because without even having the actual scale there, it is somehow still able to control me! It’s crazy!
Of course, I partially know the reason why. I have always struggled with my weight so the lower the number, the better I feel. But I also sometimes think it is the only actual number we can look at daily (or hourly) to “judge” ourselves. How are we doing? Of course I wish the scale knew that I paid for the person behind me in line at Starbucks, or that I just ran a charity event or that my child just told me I’m a good mom or just that I am a nice, kind person. All of those aspects of my life should hold more weight and somehow get worked into the equation, but they don’t. Instead, that stupid number across that little screen that only knows one thing about me, controls way too many parts of my life.
Imagine there was a scale that told us all what kind of person we are? The world might be a much kinder place. If we all obsessed over that number just as much as how fat or skinny we were, we would put more pressure on ourselves to be better overall human beings.
So, as I look through old pictures of life events, celebrations, good times and bad times I can tell you pretty much to the exact number what I weighed on that day? Like WTF…why?? Not only that but I can tell you whether I felt fat or skinny or hated my arm or chin or that I was self conscious about the way my legs looked all day. Once again, why does my memory not work as well when it comes to remembering a random act of kindness I did that day, or that it was perfect weather, or just the many positive, uplifting details of whatever that day was.
As I am getting older and now that I have children I realize a few things. One, how absolutely absurd this. And two – that all I wish for my children is that when they look at pictures or videos from the past that they remember what they did, how much fun it was, the people they were with or absolutely anything else but their weight! I wish for them to not allow the scale to carry that much importance in their life. Worry more about the imaginary scale that tells them how kind they are, how selfless they are, how they try their best in everything they do or perhaps that they need to work on any of those things.
The other thing I realize is that I am not the only one like this. Why do we all have to obsess over our weight to such a ridiculous degree? Why does it matter? After all, you know that quote “I wish I was as fat as the last time I thought I was fat”…there is never a time that isn’t true. In all of the pictures that I remember feeling so fat and so self conscious I was at least 10 lbs lighter than I am now post 2 kids. But you know what…I still didn’t appreciate that!
I think for once in my life, I am going to try to be ok with that. No, that doesn’t mean that I will stop my lifelong diet or obsession with the newest and greatest workout trends. Let’s not fool myself. But I wonder if I can just change the focus. Or as my past weight watchers leader used to say, “put a new frame around the picture”. Let’s not look at that stupid number as a measurement for anything else. Let’s look at that number as simply one measurement of one small part of us. Instead of waking up each day and running over to that scale like so many of us do to find out if its a good day or a bad day, let’s just decide before we even step out of bed that it is a good day no matter what!
And, hey, maybe one day someone will figure out how to make that other scale…the one that focuses on the things that really matter