Are people really thinking about my weight?

Hi! How are you? Me, I’m great. This has been on my mind lately and last night at Zumba, the words floated through my head and it seemed like the right time to share this. Going to places you’ve been avoiding because the people there haven’t seen you after gaining weight.

2017 was a really exciting year of changes for me. I made a career change, was in two musicals, set forth on two opportunities with race ambassadorships and hit the ground running (no pun intended) with Coach Patrick. But with all these big changes coming to me at once, I lost the glory of the structure I had built for so many years of healthy eating and meal prep and working only 40 hours a week, and I gained weight and I gained it without even realizing it was happening.

This is where I was.

And this is where I am.

There’s a good 30-40 pounds gained between photos.

And in that time between the first photo and the second through 2017, my mind shifted and I suddenly found myself avoiding going to places I used to go to when I was thinner because I’ve been embarrassed to see people I haven’t seen since I gained weight.

As a self proclaimed “celebrate yourself at every size!” blogger, I feel like a hypocrite that I’d ever gotten into this mindset but for some reason I had. I was constantly circling through scripts of what people would be thinking. “How could she let herself go?”, or “wow she looks terrible because she’s put on weight.”

But earlier this year I was feeling sad that I hadn’t seen people or gone to things I had been avoiding. I had been making up excuses of why I didn’t have time to go, while secretly telling myself I would lose a few pounds and then go visit people. I eventually realized I needed to do the things I wanted to do and see the people I wanted to see. I needed to stop worrying so much. I heard a phrase that changed things for me. Reclaim my body. (More on that phrase coming up in a few weeks)

So I did that. I reclaimed myself. I stopped thinking about others thoughts and decided that weight gain and all, I would let myself go to places and see people I had been avoiding because of my size.

And the first time I did that, the conversations I had with people weren’t about how chubby I had gotten… they were exciting and fun. I got statements like

“You look so happy!”

“I see you posting about running all the time, when’s your next race?”

“Are you doing any musicals soon?”

And I remember that the worries are all in my head.

Are there people who may be silently judging my appearance now? Maybe. Is there anything I can do about that? Nope. So you know what? I will enjoy surrounding myself with social situations I had been avoiding and know that I’m working towards being better, but not waiting to go back to certain people or places until I weight the right amount.

Cheers to being happy, healthy and celebrating my size. ❤️

-Vanessa

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