My new normal is 15 pounds heavier. I’m not writing this because I’ve embraced that. I’m writing this because I think it’s time to.

Because here’s the thing: I’m the only one who seems to be bothered by the number on the scale.

My husband doesn’t seem to mind. Quite the opposite, actually. Even after all these years, I still catch him checking me out.

My friends don’t care. Whether we get together for coffee or dinner, or meet up to kayak or walk, my body is healthy enough to do whatever we want to do.

My kids don’t care. My body is size perfect when it comes to hugging, tickling, feet fights, kitchen dance parties, or just cuddling on the couch.

My doctor doesn’t care. She’s never commented on my weight, suggested that it’s an unhealthy number, or encouraged me to lose weight. In fact, she even complimented me on my bloodwork at this year’s checkup.

God doesn’t care. When I grab my jiggly stretched out belly in disgust, I’m pretty sure He sees that slack skin as a beautiful reminder that I carried four of His precious children.

So, it seems that I’m the only one who cares.

And it’s not like I haven’t tried to rid myself of these irksome 15. I’ve tried diets, exercising more, intermittent fasting, tracking my food, and at times I’ve made a dent but I always end up back here.

I’m certainly not the healthiest person I know. I can eat so many Reece’s Pieces in one sitting it’s embarrassing (but delicious!). Some evenings, I drink beer and eat all the kids’ lunch snacks while I catch up on my Netflix. I stopped running entirely. Having said that, I do eat my fruits and veggies and curb the late night Pirate Booty binges when the pants are feeling snug. I don’t run because I don’t enjoy it anymore, so instead, I make time in my schedule for things I do enjoy, like kayaking, playing pickleball, gardening, and walking with my friends.

I pretty much lead the same kind of lifestyle that I did in my 20s and early 30s when my weight would naturally settle 15 lbs lighter than today. But doing the same things today, my weight settles where I am now.

I think this is my new normal. And I want to be OK with that.

I’m tired of being disappointed with myself when I look in the mirror. I’m tired of spending my whole day thinking of food when I’m dieting. Conversely, I’m tired of going to bed at night feeling disgusted with myself because I ate two bags of chips that were meant for lunches.

I don’t exactly know how to start being OK with my new normal, but I know I need to try.

This morning I came across this verse: “God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” -Samuel 16:7

I think I’ll start there. I’ll remind myself that I am a precious daughter of God, that He created me in His own image, that He doesn’t make crap, that He finds value in my whole being, that He looks to my heart.

If I’m good enough for Him, I should be good enough for me.

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Anne Metz

Anne Metz works part time as a freelance writer and spends the other part getting kids off the bus, breaking up fights, doing laundry, cooking, and cleaning up after her son and triplet daughters. For fun she enjoys whistling loudly and just slightly off key and eating meals that other people prepare for her. She is passionate about sharing her struggles with mothering to let other moms know they aren't alone in this journey. You can find more of her work on her blog: www.onceuponamom.net