I am a 36-year-old African American woman with an intense desire to love my physical self. I am happily married and work full-time as a school psychologist. In addition to being a wife and psychologist, I am presently writing my dissertation proposal.
I enjoy traveling, reading, dancing, spending time with family and friends, and listening to live music. While I have been blessed with so many wonderful people and experiences throughout my life, my weight has always been an issue. Thankfully, I have a husband who loves me at 140lbs and 215lbs. The problem is: I am having a difficult time loving the 215lb me.
I could probably highlight a number of contributing factors related to my struggle with weight, yet they all equal up to the same conclusion- I WANT TO LOVE THE PHYSICAL DANITA!
If I am being completely honest with myself I realize that my weight problems began as a child, and not as a graduate student in 1999 (as I previously believed). I can recall the embarrassment from having to shop at the Sears Roebuck “Pretty Plus” section and not the regular girls department that most of my friends used to select school clothes. Throughout my teens and early twenties, I began to exercise more in order to prevent being the “little chubby” one. At age 19, I was a vegetarian for several years. The sad part is during this period, I was extremely critical and judgmental of others. I was only focused on the superficial and materialistic aspects of life. After some painful life lessons, I began to develop a greater sense of my spiritual self, ultimately relying less on the physical to define who I was. Now 10+ years later, I find myself with a well intact sense of spiritual and mental well being, but a flawed physical and emotional sense of self. When I am happy, sad, depressed, disappointment, excited, etc.- I eat (plain and simple).
When I reflect over my life, I realize that I’ve wasted a great deal of time and energy focusing on how my physical self appeared and not fully living in the moment. I want 2012 to be the year in which I break the cycle of yo-yo dieting and being paranoid about how I appear in pictures of myself at various events.