“I know I’ve put on weight,”she said quietly to herself as she run her hand over her tummy. She looked into the bathroom mirror and instead of catching her own gaze she looked down at her mid-section, not with love or care but with scorn and suspicion.
“I know I’ve put on weight,” she said repeatedly over and over in her head, as she slid back into the warm cosy bed with her warm snuggly husband. “I know I’ve put on weight,” she said as she felt his hand lay gently against her tummy. Her big warm soft tummy.
“I know I’ve put on weight,” she said, out loud to her husband, who went quiet and a sad look flitted across his face. Not out of sadness for her weight gain but out of sadness for her pain.
“I know I’ve put on weight,” she said, despite trying to get some exercise and keep moving. She felt a huge weight on her chest not caused by too much food or too much drink, but caused by the pressure of how she feels about herself. A feeling she doesn’t have about others. A feeling that creeps up whenever she feels low.
“I know I’ve put on weight,” she said out loud into a camera. The same camera she has stared into everyday for the last 43 days. The camera she has spoken about her feelings about this terrible situation we find ourselves in. The camera where she spouts advice about being kind, especially to ourselves. Where she says things that make sense, even to her, but she can’t always abide by.
“I know I’ve put on weight,” she said as hot tears fill her eyes, knowing that really weight isn’t the issue right now. The feeling of not taking her own advice about self-care filling her with shame. The issue is that we are in lockdown and “putting on weight” is not the worst thing. The worse thing would be to be ill or worse someone she loved to fall ill.
“I know I’ve put on weight,” she said trying not to let the noise of the internet and the media overwhelm her completely. The memes and comments of people complaining how fat they are going to be after lockdown, about how much they do not want to be like she was even before this.
“I know I’ve put on weight,” she said but she decided to be kind to herself. To remind herself that there are worse things to be. She decided to think about what she is other than weight. She is loved, fortunate to have food and a roof, fortunate to have two idiot cats and an amazing husband. She knows that while she can’t see them, her friends and family are safe. She has access to books, art and a garden.
She is fortunate, but today her boggarts are out of the cupboard. Today she needs to hide under a blanket and let Husbandface fight the boggarts off for her. “I know I have put on weight,” she said, and in lockdown it shouldn’t matter. And hopefully tomorrow it won’t.