For many years I believed that if I could just lose the weight, then I would arrive.
Arrive where, I didn’t know specifically. I’m not sure I cared, because I knew it would certainly be a better place. A place where trying on clothes was an easy and enjoyable task. My lighter body would float with effortless grace when I walked into a room. Odds were, that as soon as my body became a more desirable size, my skin and hair would perfect themselves too. I’d be the total package. Life would be good, or at a minimum, better than it was without that small, enviable body.
But, thin is not a destination.
Skinny is not a place you arrive.
Freedom has no connection to the readout on the scale.
Thin-Land Isn’t Heaven
I’m not against losing weight. Don’t get me wrong. There’s biblical merit to staying healthy. I strive to keep my weight in check so that the host of diseases nipping at my heals won’t actually bite.
But, what I all too often forget is that even if I reach “thin” I haven’t made it to heaven.
Of course, we’d never verablize the lunacy. Sliding into a pair of size two jeans would be almost as good as meeting God himself. That’s crazy talk. Heresy.
What my heart believes, that’s another story. One filled with deception, lies and false promises.
My heart falls disillusioned to an idol of beauty–an idol that professes the pearly gates and gold lined streets found in thin land, not the heaven of the Bible.
I’m tempted, again and almost each day, to believe it.
But, thin is not a destination.
The Illusion of Arrival
This isn’t my first chess game with the concept of arrival. I thought I had “arrived” when I finally became a college student. Then I, again, thought I’d arrived when I got that first job. A Master’s degree, marriage, motherhood, all of these milestones gave me more opportunities to learn that life events are not destinations. Rather, the only thing certain in life is that it keeps going and changing. Arrival–stationary stillness that comes from sameness, that’s actually physical death. Not life.
As I continue to swallow the sour truth that checking boxes off my bucket list doesn’t afford me the opportunity to coast through my remaining days on a lounge chair in paradise, I must also acknowledge the constant pace of my temptation. Losing weight does not land me anywhere miraculous. I may have renewed energy, vigor for life, and better doctor’s reports. But, ultimately, losing weight can’t compare to heaven. Yet, I see another thin woman on a billboard. I meet a woman my age who still wears a size four. And, I become disillusioned once again. Maybe things would be better if I could just get to thin land?
Strive For More Than Just a Good Body
Your life is more than just your body size and the digital read out on the scale. Your purpose in life goes much further than just attaining a certain dress size. Though you can savor in the success of reaching your health goals for a while, the work to stay there–to keep that thin body–doesn’t stop.
Thin is not a destination. Heaven is. How often to I spend time thinking, worrying, striving and plotting to get to the former, while forgetting that eternity lies in the latter.
What do you think?
I agree, of course, ultimately. However, I cannot deny that, in fact, when I am at a healthy weight, my life does feel better. I have had times of being 20lbs (ish) over weight and it is really hard shopping, feeling comfortable in clothes, not having as much energy. When I stick with what I have grown to consider my ideal body weight, not skinny, but healthy, (and maybe the difference here is that I have never had a size in mind, “I want´to be a size 4” that I am trying to “reach” like a destination) that I AM happier. And there is so much in that happiness, maybe the joy of not having food as an idol, maybe the joy of having my husband find me that much more desirable, (not that he would ever reject me, ever!) but when I am at a healthy weight his eyes light up in a different way, that is wonderful to experience. This is a big topic!
Yes, BreAnna, I don’t disagree! I hope you read the part about their being merit to staying at a healthy weight. There’s obvious benefits to staying healthy–beyond how you feel and look even! But, I believe many women (like me) are tempted to believe a lie that we would “arrive” somewhere when we lose the weight . . . doesn’t matter if that’s 5 lbs or 100 lbs, but that “thin” is something much more than just a number on the scale -but it means a different (read: better) life. That’s really what I’m talking about here. 🙂 Thanks for chiming in!!