Yesterday, I got on the scale at the gym and realized that in the past few weeks, I’ve lost six pounds. Not big to you, HUGE to me. Annoying to you, AMAZING to me. And it’s not just the pounds –it’s everything that comes along with every change I’ve made since starting this blog.
I’ve followed through with very little in my personal life, so being able to set a goal and actually start to reach it is not something I often experience.
So I came home and sat down to write a post about my progress. How when I started this blog, a big part of my offline life was to get my ass off the couch and away from the computer. And I’ve been doing that in a big, big way. I know it may appear as if the time spent online is the same as it was before, but I can assure you it’s not.
Wait a minute, there I go apologizing again. I mean, who cares if nothing has changed? It has, but what if it hasn’t? IT’S OK.
Anyway. When I started to write about how I’d been losing weight, I thought, “Crap. I’m turning into one of those girls who talks about working out all the time. Who shares every pound lost, and every milestone achieved. Who has unironic conversations with store associates at Lululemon about yoga retreats in Costa Rica. THE HORROR.”
And you know what? IT’S OK.
I’m proud of every thing I’ve done to get to where I am at this very moment. No one has forced me off the couch. I don’t have a personal trainer who I pay to motivate me each week. I don’t have an unlimited bank account to support expensive gym memberships and consultations with nutritionists. I don’t know a thing about food and have been teaching myself along the way. I’m bootstrapping the poop out of this “get healthy” plan.
I earned me that pair of expensive yoga pants. And I deserve to be proud of it.
I think some of this defensiveness stems from comments I continue to see on social media from women who, despite everything they might say in support of women’s rights, actually seem to hate other women. Who judge those who are out doing and living. Who judge those who are pushing themselves to do great things in every sphere of their life, and whose lives are better for it. Even though those things may seem – on the surface – trivial, vain and sometimes even pretentious.
And I’m sick of apologizing.
One of the goals of this whole exercise was finding a way to be true to me and not be all things to all people. To stop compromising what I was saying online to fit people’s agendas of what I should be offline. To stop trying to please every.single.person. To eliminate those people who cast a negative online shadow that creeps into my offline life. And it’s become clear that despite my progress, I’m still letting these people get to me.
I need to remind myself:
It’s OK…to spend a small salary on yoga pants as a reward for meeting my goals.
It’s OK…to admit those pants make me really stinking happy.
It’s OK…to go to bed without washing my makeup off sometimes. While wearing new yoga pants.
It’s OK…to have a really good hair day and post pictures on Instagram.
It’s OK…to reward a hard work out with three Cadbury Eggs, then lie about it on MyFitnessPal.com.
It’s OK…to wear bikini bottoms to work because I’m too tired to do laundry at the moment.
It’s OK…to take duckface selfies. (OK, not every time. Take it easy).
It’s OK… to be a music snob who listens to Celine Dion, Michael Bolton and the Pitch Perfect Soundtrack.
It’s OK…to be an intellectual who reads US Magazine and, sometimes, young adult fiction.
It’s OK…to be a film minor in college and still count Love Actually as my favorite movie of all time.
It’s OK…to watch Jump Start on VH1 in the morning instead of catching up on the news.
It’s OK…to not be quite sure why the Koreas are at war (OK, actually that’s not OK. Turn off VH1).
It’s OK…to stop hanging out with people who no longer share my values, despite our history.
It’s OK…to talk to and treat my dog like a human being.
It’s OK…to be addicted to tattoos.
It’s OK…to not always support local food.
It’s OK…to show cracks in my armor at work.
It’s OK…to play Scramble with Friends while on a bathroom break. Sorry, friends *flush*
It’s OK…to not call my parents back right away.
It’s OK…that when I do, it’s just to talk about how to buy out a lease on a car. or negotiate a raise.
It’s OK…that I miss falling asleep to the sounds of alien talk shows on NPR.
It’s OK…to admit that another person made me happy.
It’s OK…to admit that sometimes that actually kinda sucks.
It’s OK…to have a wedding inspiration board on Pinterest.
It’s OK…to have not the slightest desire to watch the Walking Dead, Game of Thrones or Girls.
It’s OK…to use hashtags in Facebook posts. (#LoveYouCheryl!!)
It’s OK…to hate ALLTHECATS.
It’s OK…to secretly, actually, LOVE all the cats but be too stubborn to tell my friends who have them.
It’s OK…to be stubborn and not concede an argument.
It’s OK…to have to look up ‘concede’ on dictionary.com to make sure it was the right word.
It’s OK…to still not be convinced it was.
Well, wasn’t that an honest little soul puke.
So yes, it’s OK to be that girl who talks about working out. I’m really proud of everything I’ve done throughout this entire journey. And the reason I’m adding importance to the weight loss is because it’s an actual, physical representation of other changes I’m making to my life. Yes, I’m making progress in other ways – reconnecting with old friends has been incredible, rediscovering hobbies that make me happy has taken me far from my laptop – but it’s more difficult to see the real time effects of those changes. The weight loss becomes the physical manifestation of my own personal life shift. And yeah – that’s cool.
It’s important that through this journey I continue to remind myself why I’m on it, what I’m doing, what I’m failing to do, and be OK with all of it. And I’m sharing this journey not only for you, but to hold myself accountable. I’ve said what I wanted to do, and I’m doing it. Or, maybe I’m not.
And you know what? Sorry I’m not sorry.