Change is a funny, funny business. We spend our lives in constant flux, endlessly trying to become that idealized and imaginary version of our Best Self. We primp, and spend, and read up, and try. And then someone informs us that people can’t change. We are who we are and there’s no deviating.
A few months ago, someone very close to me told me that I hadn’t changed at all. That, despite the past two years, during which I lost 80 pounds, came to a general positive acceptance of my body, felt more confidence in myself than ever before, and was genuinely happy…despite all that I was still the same person I was before I started down this path.
Now, this was said during an argument and, I assume, meant to hurt me. So I took it with a grain of salt. But that comment did hurt. It sliced like a knife, straight through to my core. It devastated me. And it’s stuck with me throughout these past few months when I’ve struggled to retain who I thought was the “new and improved” version of me. The changed woman I thought I had become.
Every time I skip a workout, every time I binge, every time I get stuck in my head, feeling nearly worthless and doomed to repeat this disordered cycle of eating for the rest of my life…I think of that comment.
You haven’t changed at all.
Change is real. Change is possible. This much I know to be true. I can’t explain my life’s journey over the past few years without the concept of change.
I think that what I’ve learned while obsessing and analyzing and generally falling apart these past few months is that the opinions and thoughts of others shouldn’t influence me. I shouldn’t hesitate in what I’m doing simply because someone else can’t see or feel my progress. Easier said than done, I know, but this is what I need to remember in those darker moments. That I am changed. Who I was is not who I am. And I don’t have to explain or justify that to anyone.