Of change, realizations and mantras thanks to “grown woman weight”
Growing up, I’ve always been on the heavier side. My baby fat made me an adorable little toddler and added a lot of cuteness factor for all the performances I had to do for relatives during Christmas. (Hey, anything for the money, amirite?) But while it’s cute for a young girl, many of my mother’s friends and relatives were concerned that I remained curvy as I got older. As much as I *did* try to lose weight, I didn’t exactly have that Monica Geller-esque transformation expected of heavier girls. After getting made fun of for not looking like my peers who shed their baby fat, my self-esteem plummeted.
The moment I turned 18, I convinced myself that my metabolism would begin slowing down. The chances for a grand transformation were significantly less, and my curves have most likely filled out. “This is as good as it’s going to get,” I used to tell myself. That was supposedly the end for any change. As I rushed through 19, 20, 21 and 22, I settled on maintaining my weight. If I magically got the drive to go lower, so be it, but I’m already comfortable, and riding steadily.
In 2020, while swimming through the abundance of debates between toxic productivity and self-love posts, I stumbled across a Twitter thread embracing their “grown woman weight.” Different women showed off their weight gain throughout the years, re-framing it as a beautiful occurrence. They approached the topic positively instead of pushing the “she let herself go” narrative we know all too well. If anything, scrolling through the thread felt validating and empowering. Here is an entire community of individuals kicking shame to the curb and embracing change. It was a step toward self-acceptance and self-love, especially for those who engaged with the thread.
Grown woman weight thread? 130??230 drop your pics!
(Reposting this thread because ppl were mad I deleted it lol) pic.twitter.com/6RBFJh9ux5
— Tay (@tayytoday) March 26, 2020
But on my end, it took two years, a medical checkup and a personal tragedy to fully understand what they meant. It took my jeans hugging my body too snugly and realizing that my favorite top fits differently to learn a lesson: our bodies continue to change. Grown woman weight can be part of that. Some girls get their curves later than others. When women get pregnant, they need to be able to sustain a child for nine months. Hormonal imbalances and other conditions can also cause bodies to change. Many reasons and factors cause weight gain, and none of them should be considered shameful. Not at all.
Understanding that my grown woman weight resulted from multiple factors made me realize that my body is a beautiful gift. After all, it has brought me to different places and allowed me to meet many amazing people. It helps me cope with different situations, whether good and bad. My body is strong, my body is a fighter, and I should give it the love it deserves. On bad days when self-loathing is at an all-time high, my mind wanders back to the “grown woman weight” thread. I remember the positive messages, the perspective of viewing weight gain as something we can come to love, even when we want to shed some pounds. Many people are valid for wanting to alter their appearances to achieve self-confidence, but it’s also possible to love one’s body while they go through that change. These statements can all coexist.
No matter how you look or feel, it should never stop you from receiving love, most especially from yourself. After all, the road towards self-love and confidence is long, forked and winding. But what’s most important is that we try again.
Art Chelsy Estrada