The Before Picture: Me, with Bitchy Resting Face.
Before. Before what, exactly? Before I change my life? My habits? Before I look differently? Won’t I always look like Alana? Thinking about it, before is an endless state. Before I die, before I’m born, before tomorrow, before I’m too old, before time runs out.
The world runs on before and after.
I’ve been on a quest for the present for some time, and I’m slowly finding it.
I’m trying to lose the weight I’ve gained since pregnancy and childbirth. I’m wanting to be healthy to avoid diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and yes, to love clothes again.
I’ve learned that, for me, the motivation to engage in healthy behaviors is both intrinsic and extrinsic. I’m wanting tangible results, yes, but I seriously get off on self-discovery and enlightenment.
It is important to get a handle on my ‘Before’ if I’m ever going to able to recognize any ‘After.’
If there is such a thing (body-wise).
It’s wholly subjective and I’m not entirely sure at this point what I want my after to look like, or if I have any desire to recognize it as such.
Because my ‘Before’ has been thirty years in the making, and I’m only just getting a handle it.
Tetris of Life?
I’ve spent much of the past month playing a game of Tetris with myself. I’ve been stacking up the different parts of me so they all fit together. It’s not tidy, and I’m still a novice.
The pieces have different shapes, weights and quantities. I’ve been stacking Tetris pieces of faith, motherhood, nuclear family, extended family, career ambitions, educational goals, writing, friendship, feminism, fantasy, cultural identity, role in others’ lives, liberalism, moral obligations, anxiety disorder, passion, sources of pleasure, how my body prefers to move in activity, how my palate effects my food choices.
The above are merely a few of the things that make up my ‘Before.’
And I have strong ties to each aspect- I don’t want any of them to disappear when I lose thirty pounds.
Last year’s Special K slogan was ‘What will you gain when you lose?’
I liked it at the time. It appealed to me. But I never ‘lost’ weight last year. Does that mean I didn’t ‘gain’ anything?
I think I’ll look back on 2013 as the year that I finally ‘grew up.’ So many things changed within me. I worked out so many inner demons….which I think we all grapple with in our twenties. I threw away so many ‘what ifs.’ I became less selfish, I think. It’s not to say turning thirty brought magical wisdom. But it brought me to grips with my ‘Before.’
And I don’t think anyone losing weight should shed their Before. It’s you, and you are wonderful.
Tonal Shift: If the above post were to be summarized in quick astrological terminology- I had my Saturn Return and I came out the other side.
Soon: I had my Saturn Return and I came out the other size.