"What are YOU doing here?" It wasn't the first time I'd had an evil glare aimed at me in the line at Weight Watchers. Last time it happened I must've been suffering from an aggressive case of PMS. Because I WAS aggressive with the woman who dared as to ask the question with disdain. She turned to leave as soon as she jousted the question my way, stepping off the scale, folding up her weigh-in book and proceeding to leave the Y before our little weekly meeting started. "WAIT!" I said to her loudly, causing her to spin around and look at me with an expression of surprise. "I'm not letting you get away with that comment!"
I lifted my shirt several inches and inadvertently pushed my yoga pants down so low that my Victoria's Secrets were showing. "That's nothing," a couple other women piped in. "Listen, you guys," I lectured them. "This is not about comparing ourselves to each other. We are each on a personal journey here and whatever you have to lose -- 100 pounds or 16...I've seen members over the last nine years attend faithfully to lose both numbers -- it's about YOU! Not anyone else's numbers! We're here to support one another. Not compare ourselves." (Do not mess with me during a bout of PMS. I'm warnin' ya.)
It's a lesson (not the PMS...the comparing) that I learned well during my autism journey...which is what launched me into Weight Watchers the first time. Thirty pounds of self-nurture in the form of food post diagnosis. After five years of yo-yo-ing, fretting and schlepping it around, I finally swallowed hard and joined a group. I lost the weight, mastered some great tools, made some great friends that are still friends today. And, I kept off the weight for eight years until I met my gourmet fiance two years ago. Since January, I've been hell-bent (most of the time) in losing the 15 I carelessly gained back. (About five now to go. And then it's all about the long-term maintenance.)
Back to the lesson. It's true, we can always find someone who has circumstances more dire-seeming than our own -- or less so. But it's about you. It's about me. If it's yours, it yours. If it's mine, it's mine. No Ifs, Ands or Buts. Regardless if it's pain (physical or emotional), disAbility or weight loss. It's about the journey. Your journey. Comparison can be toxic and a major trip up. Feel what you need to feel. Then find a route to maneuver your way out. And beware of comparisons. (And curly-headed blondes with PMS.)
Ahem. Rant over.