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Old 09-21-2008, 12:14 PM   #1  
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Lightbulb A revelation about my mom

Last week, I saw a little girl with her mom when I was out shopping. The little girl was maybe six or seven years old, and very heavy. And I just wanted to say to her, "Do it now, change things now. Your life will be so much better and easier and happier if you do it now. I can tell you how. It can be hard but it gets easier, and you can do it."

Of course I didn't say anything. I would never say anything like that to a stranger of any age. But her mom could say it. Maybe her mom has said it; she's probably said it a lot. But that girl didn't hear it (couldn't hear it? wouldn't hear it?) any more than I did at that age.

All of the sudden, I realized that throughout my whole childhood, my mom wanted me to lose weight because she loves me. Because she wanted my life to be better and happier and easier, she did everything in her power to make me lose weight. I never got that before. I never understood that she was doing it out of caring and concern. I only ever heard criticism when she would talk to me about my weight or put me on another damn diet - I never heard love. But looking back, it's so easy to see that she wanted me to lose weight before I got any bigger, before it got even harder, before I grew up and had to do it as an adult.

I called my mom and told her this. About the little girl, and how I wanted to help her, and how I never understood that my mom felt that way all along and just wanted the best life for me. When I told my mom, she started to cry. She was so glad that I finally got it, that I knew she had done it because she loved me. It turned into the most honest conversation my mom and I have ever had about my weight, especially my overweight childhood.

Even though my childhood is gone and done, long past, I can barely describe the relief I feel. My parents may not have liked the way I looked, they may have been embarrassed at my size, they may have hated having to struggle to find clothes that fit me, but above all, they loved me.


Last edited by LisaF; 09-21-2008 at 12:39 PM.
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Old 09-21-2008, 12:19 PM   #2  
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Good for you for calling your mom and letting her know. Mom and daughter relationships can get so complicated. It's always nice to hear a happy ending!
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Old 09-21-2008, 12:25 PM   #3  
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LisaF, your story has brought tears to my eyes! I'm so happy for your revelation, and that you could share it with your mother.

And your attitude toward your weight loss should be the same--you are doing it not because you don't like yourself--but because you LOVE yourself so much that you want to be healthier and happier.

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Old 09-21-2008, 12:39 PM   #4  
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Wow -- I love when I have those "I wish I had known then what I know now" thoughts. My mom was on the other end -- her disordered eating was how I learned mine. She never really tried to help, I think she found comfort in the companionship of a partner of sorts in her struggle. However, as an adult I realized she did not cause me this harm on purpose -- she did the best she could. My oldest son is a boy version of me as a child and I can see his struggles -- however, unlike my mom -- I'm here to offer him support, teach him how to take care of himself (exercise, eat right, etc.) and most of all -- not put the whole focus on what you weigh but how you take care of yourself.

I bet that was a wonderul conversation you had with your mom and I'm pretty positive you made her day
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Old 09-21-2008, 01:38 PM   #5  
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I am glad you had this revelation and spoke of it to your mom.

Truthfully, my mom tried to help me too - but, did not know how to do so. It was the sixties for me and I ended up on amphetimine Rx diet pills (highly addictive and harmful) - when I needed to lose ten pounds as a teenager. It's what she did to lose some weight.. It's all she knew to help - was to ask the doctor for diet pills for me.

I know now what you know now....our mom's did what they could because of love and not knowing what else to do. When I was a teen - there was no WW's or anything. It's kinda funny.....back then there was just calorie counting...which I do NOW!!

I am happy for you.

Last edited by Beverlyjoy; 09-21-2008 at 03:08 PM.
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Old 09-21-2008, 01:38 PM   #6  
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What a great story for you and your mom. But I wouldn't agree (and it's probably not at all what you were saying) that that makes it ok to talk to a child like that. That kind of reasoning is sooo far beyond that poor 6-year old's mind. What she needs is structure and encouragement and example, not talk.

I don't mean to blame. I think approaching the problem that way is a concept that just wasn't available to most people of prior generations. And I think the realization and subsequent conversation you had was just fabulous. Really moving.
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Old 09-21-2008, 04:49 PM   #7  
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Wow. That is an extremely powerful story, LisaF. Thank you for sharing it with us. I have been overweight my whole life, but it's only since I've started my weight loss that I've noticed the influence that my mom's unhealthy habits have had on me. She eats junk all day long, never exercises, doesn't work or do anything productive (but instead sleeps and watches TV all day), and is generally an extremely lazy person. It took some time, but I finally saw that one reason why weight loss is a challenge for me is because my mother never taught me to be responsible about my weight. The whole idea that you CAN'T always eat what you want, that you HAVE to exercise, even if you'd rather not--all of these concepts are very new to me! I was never taught to be responsible for my health, that being fit is something that requires WORK, because she herself is very irresponsible. What an awful role model for me! I take responsibility for my own actions now because I am an adult (well, er, I'm 19) and I have FINALLY learned it the hard way that there are certain duties that come with being healthy, and I am working towards them now. But I will always feel sorry for a fat child--they're the innocent ones.
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