Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The Weight of Motherhood (Series, Part 4)

This post is part of a series. I have been discussing my relationship with my weight as a woman and especially as a mother. Part 1 is here, Part 2 is here and Part 3 here.

The topic of this particular post is, "Why My Weight is Not Important to Me."

Wait a minute. You are rightly thinking, Well, obviously it's important to her. She's written a five-part series about it!

Yes, my weight is an issue for me just as it is for many moms. But is it important? Not really. Let me explain.

First of all, to me, if something is important, I will give it my time, energy and money if needed. So far, losing the last 20 lbs has not been important enough for me to make it a priority and make it happen.

My weight is not high enough that I really have concerns about my health. To be in the range of a healthy BMI, I would need to be at 159 lbs. So at 174 lbs, obviously I'm not within that range yet and have lots of room for improvement. But at the same time, I'm healthy. I'm strong. I can keep up with my kids. I ran 6 miles a few weeks ago at about a 10 minute mile pace. I know that I need to lose some weight for my health, which is why I'm writing about all of this. But because I am healthy and strong, my health is not such a big concern that it has made losing weight important.

A recent photo with my girl after I got home from a run
Secondly, my vanity has not been a driving force either. Now I don't mean that I don't care about the way I look. I do. In fact, I'm sure that I often care too much. I would love to not be plagued with cellulite. I would love to feel beautiful in a swimming suit. I would love to be leaner and more toned. While I would love all of those things, there are a million other things that are more important to me. Sleep. Spending time together as a family. Reading. Writing. Making dinner. Keeping a somewhat tidy home. Bathing the children. Having time to talk with Jason. Getting the kids to bed at a reasonable time. Having clean clothes. Time with friends.

I guess perhaps I'm being selfish. Or maybe just unrealistic. I'm not really willing to give up a whole lot of that and I would still like to lose the weight. But you see, between the baby, three other children, homeschooling and managing our home, my day is PACKED. Getting back into my pre-pregnancy jeans just doesn't matter that much when there's mouths to feed, lessons to plan and everything else that occupies my day.

Lastly, I wonder if I am going to need to accept a different weight than 155 lbs. What would be so wrong with 160 lbs? I've had four kids! I get very frustrated that our culture is so against "looking like a mom." I sometimes hear, "You don't look like you've had four kids!" While I know this is meant to be a compliment, what does it mean? What's wrong with looking like the mother of four? That's what I am!

I am partly writing this series because even though I feel alone in it, I know there must be other moms who have this same struggle. As moms, we can often act like we have it all figured out. In a group, we often don't discuss how difficult things are.

So I'm just putting it out there - I do not have this figured out. Not by a long shot. That includes a lot of things about motherhood, but in particular, managing my weight. I wanted to get real and talk about actual numbers and the real obstacles that come between me and the weight I should be at. I also feel that now that it's out there in the open for all the world to read, I will sooner be motivated to make losing weight a priority.

I have one last topic to discuss in this series--"My Faith and My Weight." Coming soon!

Here are a few more recent photos of the darlings that keep me so busy each day . . .
That's right - our little angel is now pulling herself up on EVERYTHING. She has
also become quite the speedy crawler. She is certainly keeping me on my toes!

Noah has been studying dragons and dinosaurs and was pretty thrilled to see a real dragon (a komodo dragon, that is) at the zoo last week.

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