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Love your size

By: Cris Evert Lato-Ruffolo October 14,2016 - 09:31 PM

I had been at war with my full figure since I got back in the Philippines last June.

Telling myself “I am so fat” has since become a habit. I have equated the size of my arms to ugliness. I lashed out at my husband for convincing me to stay in the US which, I stressed, resulted in my depression and overconsumption of cakes and pastries leading to the demise of my 36-24-36 vital statistics.

My husband often reminded me that I have had two pregnancies and had given birth to three children; hence, the weight gain and the figure change is normal. He asked me, very gently and sweetly, to be kind to myself.

But I did not heed any of it.

Because why did Marian Rivera look so fabulous after giving birth to her firstborn?

Why did Carmina Villaroel or Charlene Gonzales, who both gave birth to girl-boy twins like I did, manage to be fit?

And Jennifer Garner — oh my! How can she have a body like that after bearing all those kids?

Why am I “fat”?

Several times in the last three months, I caught myself in my room staring at my 2010 wardrobe — from my international student days in Shanghai — wishing I could still fit in that black dress or that purple skirt paired with an orange sleeveless top.

No, I did not resort to crying and throwing tantrums. No, I did not call on my husband to bring me to the nearest beauty clinic for a tummy tuck or liposuction. No, I did not starve myself for days without end to achieve the corn husk figure with breasts the size of tiny meatballs. 

I just sat down and reviewed my life.

Specifically, I paused and asked myself a myriad of questions:
Are you really fat?

If that is so, so what?

Do you want to lose weight and be slim? For what?

Why do you want to lose weight?

I remember a Mindful Eating Workshop I attended a month ago with wellness advocate Chip Lopez, who noted that when you want to get fit, you have to answer your “why.”

That realization hit me a few days ago.

What is my “why” in losing weight?

Is it because I want to fit in my 2010 wardrobe again?

Or is it because people around me relentlessly told me how huge I am now, replete with facial expressions of disgust and disbelief?

I took a moment to take stock of what I have been doing the past four years since I got married and had children. I asked myself, “What happened along the way?””

If you were there when I answered these questions like a Miss Universe contestant, you would think that I just lost it.

I stared at my reflection, looked at myself in the mirror and said, “Every chapter of a woman’s life may require her to be in different sizes. That is not to say that her size will define the person that she is inasmuch as her happiness is not solely defined by her husband, children or career. Size — whether thick or thin, big or small — is beautiful. It tells you how nature runs its course because there is so much movement and growth happening in my life.”

That day, I made a vow to be kinder to myself.

Ladies, it is not your husband or your significant other’s responsibility to make you happy and feel good about yourself.

It has to come from you.

It has to come from a deeper realization that you are beautiful no matter what size you are in.

Do I still want to lose weight?

Oh yes!

Because I would like to literally climb more mountains without panting like an exhausted dog. Because I would like to lead a more healthy lifestyle so I can still do what I love to do for many years to come. Because my body is a sacred gift that I should be taking care of.

But I am done castigating myself for the decisions I have made in the past. I am done telling myself that I am not beautiful because I am “fat.” I am done being harsh to myself.

I accept my size.

I embrace my current size.

I will work towards welcoming my future sizes because they are all part of me and my journey to become better as a woman, wife, mother and friend.

I wore a black dress — one that carried a tag that says “large” — in a press conference three days ago.

I felt really good.

I am beautiful.

Small, medium or large.

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TAGS: fat, figure, weight

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