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Jul
11

Too Thin

Johnna’s note:   In the following post, we have an alternative look at how hard we all are on ourselves no matter our size!

My good friend, Johnna, asked me to write an article for The Weight Loss Network about the fact that all my life I have been too thin.  It’s truthfully not easy for me to talk or write about.  I have struggled over this for a couple of weeks but finally I’ve decided to just tell you how it’s been for me.  My whole life I have struggled to gain weight.  I know how that must sound to those who have the opposite problem, but believe me it was no picnic!

As a young teen I was gangly, not tall, 5’3”, but thin as a rail.  I probably weighed in at about 80 lbs.  To top that off I had thick glasses and a last name that people loved to make fun of.   So needless to say, I wasn’t the most popular girl in school.   When I was 14 or so, the model, Twiggy, became really popular and I was thrilled.  Finally someone who looked like me–well at least build wise.  So for a little while it wasn’t so bad and I felt somewhat better about myself.

As I grew older, the stigma of being so thin started to weigh in (pun fully intended).  Every doctor I saw asked me if I was anorexic
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and tested my thyroid, even though I told them a million times that this was just how I am!   If I had a nickel for every time…well you know.

As I got older still, people started to think I was a drug addict, a hooker, or had AIDS or cancer or something equally terrible.   I would go to the emergency room and the first thing the doctors would ask is “Do you do drugs?”   Seriously…and the funny thing is, I have never done illegal drugs in my life!  (Other than a bit of weed smoking, which I, personally, don’t think is any worse than alcohol…whole other conversation there.)

I tried protein shakes and a myriad of other gimmicks to try to put on weight, but to no avail.  The shakes took away my appetite for regular meals, so that idea went out the window since I couldn’t get proper nutrition on just shakes.

At one point a doctor gave me some pills that were supposed to be an appetite stimulant.  They were anti-depressants of some sort…didn’t increase my appetite at all and had horrible side effects!

The thing that was really worrying all my life was that if I ever got really sick my body had no reserves.  I’m happy to say that this particular worry never materialized, but it was still something that bothered me quite a lot throughout my life.

On a more personal level, my self-esteem was a bit off because I had no breasts to speak of.   I know now how silly that was, but
growing up and living with the fact that most men are very fond of larger breasts did play a role in my low self-esteem until as recently as two years ago, when I was with a man who was obsessed with large breasts.  At one point I even considered getting an enlargement, then realized how ridiculous that was.  So now, after two years of therapy, I’ve learned to like myself more and as for relationships, I am looking for someone who is happy with me the way I am.

Now from the ridiculous, to the even more ridiculous, I have finally, at 56 years old, started to put on weight– and now I find myself complaining because it’s all going to my belly, hips, and butt…so I guess the fact is that we’re never really happy with how we look! We just have to do the best we can to be healthy and try to accept ourselves the way we are.  {Johnna’s note:  Lisa has finally reached 100 pounds!}

If you eat healthy and exercise, you’ll be at your best.  It may not be perfect according to the Barbie Doll standard in this country, but you are who you are.  Don’t try to be Barbie, eat healthy, exercise and lose the weight you need to lose (or in my case, gain the weight I need to gain) but if the end result isn’t model perfect, please just realize that you are a beautiful person and you’ve done your best.

Wishing you all the luck in your quest to be healthy and fit.

Lisa D.

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