Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Oprah A-Ha Moment Volume 1


I'm not a watch-"Oprah"-everyday-even-if-I-have-to-rearrange-my-schedule kind of viewer, but I enjoy her from time to time & I think she has done a lot of great things for a lot of people.  Specifically, I have watched two shows that have helped me along my path & in honor of the last month of the last season, I thought I would put some thoughts into words on the "Queen of Daytime."

Here is the first: while I was pregnant with my daughter, Oprah did her "Weight Loss Confession" show. 

Mentally, I was in  place where I was very excited about the prospect of losing weight once the baby arrived, but I was also celebrating that I was off the hook for 40 weeks of pregnancy.  I guess I was half-way to the right head space. 

Oprah said something on that show that really struck me & it helped me shape one of my core beliefs.  "With all the other things that I know how to do and all the other things that I'm so great at and all the other accomplishments, I can't believe I'm still talking about weight."  If Oprah (whether you love her or hate her, most can still acknowledge that she is extremely talented & smart) struggles daily & over a lifetime, why should I be any different?  And if that is a common experience, why should I be ashamed? 

It was the beginning of my idea that obesity is not a character flaw, but a serious medical condition.  As such, there is no reason for shame or guilt or self loathing.  No one expects a cancer patient to be angry at himself for getting cancer (not to say that processing whatever feelings arise isn't a healthy part of the process, I'm merely saying that there is no EXPECTATION of remorse, guilt, etc on the part of a patient with a "legitimate" disease). 

Accepting that my problem didn't make me a bad person freed me up to appreciate that I was worth all of the hard work, time, money & energy that this process has required.  For the part you played, Oprah, I thank you.

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