Weight Gain and Body Image

Dear Readers,

I have been gaining weight, due to having to go off hormone replacement therapy. It’s been mostly in my stomach area. It does not come off like it used to. Stubborn fat. Delayed menopause. Well, THIS is fun!!

Now, of course I complained to people, and here are their responses:

Regular Doctor, “Yup, you’ve got the menopausal pouch. Only surgery will get rid of it.” (At least she’s straight to the point! LOL)

OBGYN, “Oh, so many women tell me this. It will only last 2 years.” (She was sympathetic.)

Loving Husband, “Stop eating so much!” (But he still looks at me with google eyes when I’m naked, LOL!)

Older Sister, “It’s about time!” (That’s what sisters are for!)

95 Year Old Mom, “I remember those days.” (She still goes to 3 exercise classes a week.)

Friend, “You look amazing!” (She is beautiful and very fit.)

Now it’s been hard to fight the urge to be mad at myself. I used to be very heavy, and my shame and hatred at my body was immense. When I started suddenly gaining this weight, I started to slip into the body hatred feelings. (You can read more about this on a former post.) However, I have decided, that at 66 years old, I will not do this anymore.

I am accepting that I am not alone with this type of weight gain. When I look around at other older women, most of them carry more weight. I see so many different body shapes at yoga. I am accepting that this is what my body is doing right now.

Acceptance doesn’t mean I can eat anything in any amount I want, or laze around all day. But it comes from a place of love for myself, rather than a place of hate.

Exercise helps me feel better, even if I am heavier. I have started lifting light weights again, and I stand taller and feel stronger. Yoga helps me immensely. Even heavier, my body is aligned better due to my yoga practice. Taking long walks, or hikes, is helpful as well, and it good for my soul.

Waving across the Atlantic Ocean after a long hike!

My goal is to keep the weight gain as minimal as I can, without hating myself by over exercising, or limiting calories so much I’m starving.

I look at the lives of the women I know and love who are heavier. Some have had children, and now have grandchildren. Some worked to support themselves or their families. Some have written books, made movies, sang, danced. Some have walked across the world helping other women. Some have lost sons and daughters. Some have cared for other people, like nurses and teachers.

Does extra fat mean they are not beautiful? Do they not deserve love? Do they deserve body shame?

I bought a bigger pair of jeans, and thank goodness for the newer stretchy jeans! Woo Hoo! I will walk with dignity and joy today. Muffin top and all, I won’t cover myself up. In fact I am proud I have come so far, have helped so many children, making my last years of life a loving place for myself, my husband, and all those people I touch.

With Gratitude for How Hard my Body Works,

On Day 1843,

Wendy

PS – We went to Martha’s Vineyard on a vacation! We had so much fun, and I never had even one urge to drink!

42 thoughts on “Weight Gain and Body Image

  1. Wow Wendy, I can relate to this SO MUCH right now. I too have been gaining weight, and am struggling to work on accepting my ‘new body’. At first I was incredibly frustrated, and a bit depressed. But then something clicked, and I don’t know how but it just became easier to accept (maybe because I have no choice? lol). Exercise helps me a lot too. I know sometimes when you’re not feeling it, it doesn’t help much when other people tell you…but you are BEAUTIFUL, no matter what you weigh! Thank you for sharing this. I think every woman on the planet can relate.

    PS – your pics are gorgeous, as always!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s terrible, the pressure women have to be skinny. I’ve even been guilty of saying things like, “She’s gained weight.” Having been up and down in weight most of my life, I like it when I’m in my thin side. But learning I am loved no matter the weight. Big hugs! We are in this together!
      xo

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Our bodies are amazing thing. Look at all of the health issues you have overcome! My body is not by any means slim, and I too gained weight—a lot—during menopause. But I had to step back and remember all of the amazing things this body got me through: multiple illnesses, brink of death (twice), birth of multiple children, and so on. Love yourself, every pound, every scar, every jiggle bit. You are amazing and beautiful. 💕

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Your smile always lights up a picture.
    Our bodies carry us through life and I expect the weight has a purpose (perhaps some extra in case of illness, etc).

    Th truth is we do change and age. The range of choices to avoid this range from simple, like dying our hair and dieting to surgery. An in the end we will never be 20 again…thank god!

    Our society definitely makes being a matriarch difficult!

    Enjoy your life. You have earned your menopause.

    Love to you, you look lovely!

    Anne

    Liked by 4 people

  4. First of all Wendy, you said you were older than me and I didn’t believe you but you are (66 can’t believe it!)and if you weren’t so lovely I’d hate you for looking so young and healthy for your age. Not fair. And weight??? Those photos don’t show overweight, more like the “after” pictures that weight watchers publish. If you want to see what looking your age and being overweight really look like, I’ll send you a pic! 😉
    Looks like you had a nice trip!
    Jim x

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Wow, I had no idea you were 66 – you look fabulous! Lifting weights and yoga will keep you strong and balanced so carrying a few extra pounds won’t slow you down. Gorgeous pictures – looks like you had a great trip.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Oh wow, I can relate, for sure! I gained 20 pounds in a year, two years ago, and my weight had been creeping up before that (I am in recovery from disordered eating as well as drinking). I found that I wasn’t able to gain control of my eating and stabilize my weight, until I was able to stop beating up on myself. I had to learn to see myself as beautiful as I was, before my body would let go of the weight. Yoga helped me so much with that. And, by the way, you ARE beautiful!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Wendy, you are ridiculously gorgeous (not to mention perfectly slim!!!) and many would be jealous of your amazing figure. That said, I know how it feels to judge myself by the numbers on a scale. (And doctors proclaiming incorrect snap judgements don’t help, lol. Though of course I realize they’re only human too, and everyone makes mistakes…)

    Love your post, you say it all, and say it beautifully. And all the children you have affected positively were very lucky indeed to have you as their teacher.

    Hugs, and congrats for stepping into your comfy and perfect (and I’ll bet gorgeous-looking!) new jeans. xo n

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Wendy, I’m with your friend – you do look amazing! Besides 60 is the new 40 don’t ya Know! lol. Awesome post and pics. Thanks as always for the inspiration. And I think both you and your mum rock! xx

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Dear Wendy, this issue is not confined to the female of the species. Men go through this too. I’ve had to go through what they are now calling ‘Men’s Menopause’. Hormone replacement was invaluable in keeping stable emotionally. But when they found a spot of prostate cancer, they had to remove hormone from my regiment. Doc says it would be like putting gasoline on a fire. I gained weight and took an emotion dip, for awhile. With a dietary change and some exercise my mood has picked up. Though I haven’t lost any weight. I keep up with my wife and she is okay with the way I look. So that’s great. At sixty-nine years old I’m not going to lose any sleep over it.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. I took a swim in my tub the other night…..my fat floated up, I struggled to stay submerged..omg. So I grabbed that ab fat, and crunched it, massaged it, yep, its just fat, and thought, well, how lucky I am to live when I do (year wise), where I live (freedom to eat too much) and how lucky to have access to tabloids, social media, magazines and everything else that makes me feel inferior if I don’t realize how fake it is. I am lucky to even have the privilege and stress to worry about body image. But, alas, I still do. Just trying to keep it in perspective and embrace that newfound chubbub! Hugs, and you are still beautiful, inside and out, just try to remember that!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s