Two months ago I tried on a wedding dress. There I was proudly perched on a podium looking like the ultimate cake topper when it happened… those dreaded words escaped my lips…
“This dress will look better on me once I’ve reached my wedding weight”
What wedding weight?
The truth is, I hadn’t hatched any sort of weight loss plan. The thought of shedding weight for my wedding hadn’t even crossed my mind and here I was on bridal autopilot satisfying every bride cliche.
The next thing I know I was fully engaged with the shop assistant discussing all the latest fad diets and weight loss tips and tricks. She informed me of a new popular diet called “the 5 and 2” and professed how brides were halving their dress sizes!
I hung on her every word like a dog to its master.
I marched out of the store with a new found determination and began mentally mapping my extreme weight loss plan.
I am ashamed to admit it but these were my thoughts.
Thankfully minutes after arriving home I was saved by a phone call.
My friend Tom called me for a routine catch up on life.
As best as any male friend could, he attempted to express some interest in my wedding plans.
Tom: “How’s the wedding planning going?”
Me: “Good, I’ve tried on some wedding dresses but haven’t found the one yet”.
Tom: “You’re not going to go on one of those crazy wedding diets are you? I can’t stand it when brides walk down the aisle looking skeletal and hungry with a face caked in make up. They never look like themselves”.
Me: “Of course not!”. I lied.
But he was right.
Why do we strive to look our skinniest on our wedding day?
Why does looking skinny = looking your best?
Why do so many of us aim to punish our bodies for that one particular moment in time?
Is it because there are likely to be 1000s of photos captured on the day?
And it’s likely that some of those photos would be considered frame worthy and would be propped up on display around our homes.
But extreme weight loss is rarely ever sustainable.
So why would we want photos of ourselves looking uncommonly thin around our homes to act as a sore reminder that we’ll probably never look that way again?
Or would those photos be considered more like a trophy of proof that we once succeeded in reaching a particular weight goal?
I don’t know the answer.
But what I do know is that I want no part of it any more.
Like many girls, I have had my moments of being plagued with toxic thoughts about my body when I was younger. Like most teens I was guilty of pushing myself to unhealthy extremes and foolishly striving for the unattainable.
It took me years to learn how to strike a bargain with my food demons and I’m proud to say that over the last few years I have formed a very comfortable, honest and consistent relationship with it.
But a big life event like a wedding can act as the perfect trigger to unleash those damaging thoughts that bring so many women to their knees.
So today, as I put virtual pen to digital paper, I am announcing my rejection of the crazy bride diet!
Instead, I am going to continue to eat healthily, focus on my fitness, stretch more, practice more yoga, nourish my body and exhale all those fucked up toxic thoughts for good!
Love, Gemma xo
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