174082643I realize that I wasn’t deathfat when I was pregnant; I was at the high end of normal, but even so, gaining so much weight in nine months was scary. I worried about my baby being healthy, but I also thought about each pound having to come back off.

I never had weight issues as a child-quite the opposite. I was all knees and elbows,  thin as a rake, and didn’t break 100 pounds until I was in high school. But after moving out at 14,  working a few crappy full-time jobs at once, I started eating my feelings in the form of piles of fried rice and french fries. I didn’t stop until I was obese, and then worked my ass off for about two years to get to get down to a healthy weight. I changed my entire lifestyle to get fit, and being fit in turn changed my entire life: I wore what I wanted, I climbed mountains, I snowboarded, I did all this amazing shit I never thought I could when I was fat.

See? Life IS better for skinny people!

At the midwives’ clinic, every weigh-in was a triumph, as well as another pin in the ratty Voodoo doll of my confidence. At the supermarket, I can’t help but glance through all the glossies that show women who lost their baby weight in a month. A week! A few days! BEFORE THEY HAD THEIR BABY. Some women ate nothing and had no babies and they are so thin that people are losing their goddamn minds over it. All of them blurred together into one bronzed demon that clung to my back and demanded I eat less carbs.

I had my kid in the middle of the apocalyptically dark Alaskan winter. Temperatures often dip below negative 30 degrees, and the sun is above the horizon for a just a few measly hours a day. After having a hard labour and the lingering medical fuckery of septicemia, I didn’t go skiing. I didn’t lift weights. I didn’t go out much at all. I tried to take care of myself, and part of that was eating really well. Slowly, steadily, the pounds started peeling off, and I was totally ecstatic to lose the  weight.

 

Me. I’m going to be ME again.