My Jeans Are Too Loose, And For This I Am Conflicted.
This morning I put real pants on for the first time in three weeks.
Living that “Crohn’s disease flare and also having the flu” life, I’ve stuck mainly to leggings, if not straight up pajamas for weeks now. I’m lucky in that I work at a web startup where leggings and big sweatshirts are the norm, so I’ve gotten away with stretchy pants that don’t push down on my intestines for far too long now. But today, Chicago weather had other ideas, and I knew real jeans would be necessary.
I went to reach for my loosest pair of jeans as to not push it, and put them on to find they are way looser than normal. I am now, as I type, wearing what was formerly my tightest pair of jeans–– only they’re not anymore. They’re too big.
Now, as just a regular 24-year woman, this whole blog post probably sounds like a really awful humble brag. We get it, Sam. You lost weight. Good for you! Also, maybe go to hell?
But as a chronic illness-having woman, weight loss is a bit more complex, and usually comes as a result of being super sick for a period of time (at present, my diet consists mainly of foods that look like they were already digested by a mama bird). Not that we really need something to complexify body image for women in 2016. We’re living in a whirlwind of messages. Fat shaming is rampant. Skinny shaming is a thing. Love your body, but also maybe go paleo and gluten-free or better yet only eat seeds? It’s honestly hard for even 100% healthy women to keep up with all the bullshit.
Point being, weight is complex, and something we should probably stop trying to put into convenient boxes and infographics for Pinterest consumption. Some women are skinny and healthy. Some women are bigger but still healthy. Some women are gaining weight for reasons beyond their control, like medication or thyroid issues. Some women like myself are losing weight for reasons beyond their control. Am I happy every time someone tells me I look like I’ve lost weight? Of course, I want to be Kendall Jenner as much as the next person. But do you know what’s better than compliments on my thinness? LITERALLY ANYTHING DIPPED IN CHEESE SAUCE.
So maybe what I’m saying is this: if you’re in decent health, cut your body a break. Skinny doesn’t always equal healthy. Keep an eye on things like blood pressure and cholesterol levels, but don’t beat yourself up over that one picture your mom posted on facebook where it kind of looked like you maybe had an extra chin. Chock it up to lighting and enjoy your life and also a hot dog.
Because as a reminder, people who say “nothing tastes as good as skinny feels” are liars. Really hungry liars.