Dear Ladies at the Gym:

You can lift more than 15-30 lbs without looking like the Incredible Hulk.

I promise.

I’ve been sicker than a dog for the last few weeks, so yesterday was my first day back at the gym since the holidays. I have, however, been doing my daily free weights routine and taking the stairs everywhere, as usual, so there wasn’t much guilt on my part about missing the gym. What I missed had nothing to do with guilt. I just missed getting to the gym. I liked the routine.

I cleaned out my closet the other night and got rid of all of my baggy pants, the sort that would literally fall down if I didn’t wear a belt. I got rid of some shirts that I looked like I was swimming in, too. At the back of my closet I found a part of shorts I’d worn at Clarion five years ago, and found that they slipped right on.

So after three years of beating my head against a wall, the last year has seen me fall back to my set point with very little head-beating at all. Hooray for 30 lb free weights and tossing out dieting. I’m very happy at a size 14/16. I don’t like being too small these days, though when I was a kid I obsessed a lot about being small and fragile and bullshit like that. Now I enjoy having some intimidating bulk. It makes it easier for me to yell at assholes on the train who try and harrass me. But I don’t like being a size 20 because you can’t find clothes anywhere and everything seems to look terrible on me unless it comes from Old Navy.

To be honest, the best part about being back to my old weight is that I *can* go to more stores and buy actual clothes there. One more size, and I can actually go shopping with size 4 Jenn at the shops she goes to and expect to find something there in my size, too.

That pisses me off, really. Why the fuck couldn’t they have sold stuff in a size 20? I would have bought it. Think of the money they’d make! But then I’d be shopping with size 4s, and some of those women might find that really intimindating. Or something. I don’t know what’s up with that. Heaven forbid a size 2 woman get caught dead wearing the same style clothes as a size 20.

Pisses me off.

For now, it’s nice to recognize myself in the mirror again. It took me three years to put on the weight, and three years to take it off. I guess that’s fair.

My concern now is keeping 2 sizes of clothes in my closet instead of 4.

Sometimes I wonder if it’s weird to gain and lose as much weight as I have in my life. And then I wonder if that’s normal. And then I wonder if the problem’s always just been the fact that I always thought I was too “big” for a girl and kept trying to diet and got lost in a binge and purge cycle that’s kept me yo-yoing for years.

I want to get off the yo-yo.

I’m spending a fortune in clothes.

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