When Bruno Mars sings “just the way you are”, my parents seem to hear a different set of lyrics. What I get told is “adjust the weight you are”. Yes, I am telling you – if Indian parents were pencils, they would be both the sharpest and bluntest tools in the box. They will tell you exactly as it is – you’ve got to love it *she says as she weeps*.
Just like with clothes, this kind of directness is passed down from generation to generation. My grandma probably had it, my mum definitely has it and I am yet to see what I do to my kids. When I was younger, I was very skinny. All I would hear is “eat more Kavi, please, just one more mouthful”. Oh how the tables have turned, I now only hear “put the spoon down, Kavi. Step away from the plate”. Like I’m some damn reversing truck?!
And there’s something so special about their creativity. They use the most incredible describing tools to do the trick. I won’t just hear “you are fat”, I will hear “you know Sharon’s daughter’s seven months pregnant? You make her look as flat as an ironing board.” Or “apparently people put on weight when they get comfortable in a relationship. If that’s true, you look like you’ve been happily married for ten years.” Genius right?! Who would have thought it.
You may be sat here thinking “you’re not even big”. Yes that’s right… all two of you. You should never ask a lady her weight but since you asked so nicely, I will show you a graph I made to summarise my life so far:
What this graph is showing you is that I have made that same “weight loss” new year’s resolution a stone heavier for the last five years. I have always had that “I have time to lose it, it’s not a big deal” feeling. Until now. I’ve started a new job after a month of no working and nothing hardly fits. It’s just so damn uncomfortable. My trousers don’t sit right, my shirts buttons don’t align and I’m pushing bulges in on one side only for them to pop up on the other. So clearly something is working right, haha. I do keep trying to lose weight… it just keeps finding me again.
It comes down to me eating all the wrong foods, avoiding all the right and refusing to exercise. I should give back my A* in science because God knows how long it’s taken me to understand that my energy input needs to be less than my output. I can be a slow learner sometimes…
It’s true that the stuff you love hurts you the most. Food is my greatest friend and biggest enemy. The funniest thing is though – and something my closest friends will tell you – I am the world’s fussiest eater. I’m probably one of the few vegetarians that have a phobia of vegetables. I like the odd few things like sweetcorn and potatoes but honestly my poor mum spends most of her time blending things just so I don’t see it! Ohhh but when it comes to foods I do like, you try and stop me haha! Pizza, fries, cakes… to be fair, I am ticking the “balanced diet” box because I’m surely losing pounds(£) as quick as I am gaining them (kg). Some people can honestly eat five burgers and not gain a pound, I so much as look at a brownie and I’m suddenly five pounds heavier. My mum and dad are always asking me why I’m growing so fast and I explain that it’s in the genes. I need to stop saying that because they twist it to say “yes, you make all your trousers look like skinny jeans.”
One more thing that runs in the family, is that no one runs in my family. Some of my friends set themselves regular challenges like climbing mountains or marathons. The only marathons I am involved in are movie related. I genuinely bolted up the stairs to the train two days ago so pleased that I didn’t hear any change in my breathing… but then I removed my headphones.
For years, I’ve tried dieting, fasting, I’ve tried no carbs, I’ve even tried drinking hot water and lemon. Anything I see on the internet I try but never for long. I’ll try it, decide it’s not for me and then complain. I’m definitely at the point of throwing all kinds of mud at the wall hoping something will stick. And you know what it reminds me of? When you go to type a word on Google but can’t really remember how’s it spelt. So you type random letters in different combinations hoping that the dictionary will correct you but instead you get “no suggestions”. Like the computer is saying “This is not working”. Well that’s me with losing weight – trying random things with no results at all.
I’m determined to lose weight now – not because of my family but for me. I’m 25 and I should feel like I’m at the peak of my fitness. Health is wealth and I’m only realising this now. No amount of money can reverse the damages of ill health. What good is it being the richest man/woman in the cemetery? Some things are going to be out of my hands but I should try and control what I can – i.e. what I eat and what I do with my body. Work is often seen as the biggest priority but we’ve all seen what happens when coughs or colds take over.. we are rendered completely useless. For three weeks out of the four that I took off before I started back at work, I was in and out of hospital because of an infected jellyfish sting. I couldn’t do anything in that time, I was told “no exercise” so that no sweat or bacteria could enter the wound. And guess what, I had never wanted to exercise so much in my life!
So I am going to lose weight – it’s not going to be a month’s change, I need to make it a lifestyle change. I’m going to start with the small things first – I’ll accept that I won’t ever be a “salad” girl because I am always going to love my food but perhaps now in moderation. I need to start sleeping at a good time, changing what I snack on and drinking more water! I need to walk not just before work or after work, but at random points during work like taking the stairs instead of going up in a lift. I don’t quite know all the things I’m going to do yet but now that I’ve written it down, I actually feel accountable. It’s my body after all and I’ve got to live with it. If it’s the same for you too, write down what you want to change and tell your family and friends so they can help encourage you and make it fun! Swim, dance, be as random as you like – find new ways to make it not such a chore.
It’s time for me to be the best version of “me” and I’m starting today as the “before” picture in my life’s magazine!