Addicted! To the bathroom scale?

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I admit it; I am an addict!

There, I have said it….I admit it fully, there is absolutely no denying it.

I am an “addict.” What is my vice you ask? It’s my bathroom scale…I am addicted to it, I cannot go a day without getting on it…my scale and I have a special relationship.tanita bathroom scale

Yes, yes, I know, the scale does not always tell the truth. There are days when I loathe that damn scale, I hate it with a passion, but it speaks to me every morning. I hear it calling out to me and the moment I awake, I am driven to answer its call. Of course, there is the stop to go to relieve myself first; I simply cannot visit with the scale without first visiting the toilet. Perhaps the scale is jealous, as the toilet laughs and says, “Ha, ha…she comes to me first.” However, the scale is not easily taunted, for it knows the control it has over the woman who is about to stand upon it, with her bare feet and her naked body, the scale knows it can make or break her day.

The scale has a special spot on the floor as well, and nothing else is permitted to touch it. It is placed very carefully within one marble tile, always aligned, always in the exact same spot, in the exact same position. Heaven forbid it should be moved, the number might change. “Here she comes” the scale taunts back to the toilet, “She’s mine now, I’ve got her right where I want her.”

I stand there, looking down, wondering to myself if it will be good to me today, or if it will continue to frustrate me as it has done for so very long. I wonder if I should try to go to the bathroom one more time, even though I just did two minutes ago. Slowly, I remove my slippers and press the button with my toe…I know I am addicted, but I cannot help myself.

doctor-scaleYou see, the bathroom scale has been an integral part of my life for the past 10 years…it has seen me through good times and for the most part, it has been very good to me. It rewards me for my hard work and has given me joy each time it shows me that I am closer and closer to my goal. Yet, these days, it is not so good to me, the closer I get to my goal, the harder that scale is on me. There will be days and weeks where it will not budge, it refuses to listen to my pleas of mercy, and my begging is futile. Its cruelty really shows when rather than going down, it will go up…and for no apparent reason. I didn’t cheat, I didn’t eat more than I was supposed to and I certainly didn’t eat something that wasn’t allowed and I worked out hard. Oh boy, do I work out hard! I was a good girl, yet the scale seems to find pleasure in making my rewards these days far and few between.

10 lbs, that is all I am asking it for, 10 lbs…is that so hard to give me? After all, it has given me well over 250 already, why should 10 be so hard. Yes, I said it, no, it was not a typo…250, my scale has given me 250 lbs, I have worked and worked hard for it and I have been rewarded. Yes, I could have taken the easy way out, but I chose not to go that route, I wanted to change my life, but didn’t want to change it so drastically by having weight loss surgery. So, I have worked, I have been focused, determined and I have let absolutely NOTHING get in the way of reaching my ultimate prize.

For 43 years the scale was my enemy, it was not my friend, we rarely visited and these days, I cannot be without it. If I have to go out of town for a few days, I swear if there were a way, I would take my friend with me. When I go out of town and I have to leave my precious scale behind, I never forget about it, I think about it every day and I count the days until we will visit once again. My beloved tells me that he is going to take my scale away and not give it back to me until I have been home for at least a week. You see, while I am away, I do not have the opportunity to go to the gym, and most times, I have little control over the foods, which are served, at meetings as well as the restaurants, which are chosen. I try very hard to make good choices while I am gone, but, as my scale reminds me daily, even when I make good choices, I do not always receive the expected reward.

January 5, 2005…The scale and I started to bond, as time went on, our friendship grew, there came a time when I looked forward to our visits with excitement and as we said goodbye, I was literally counting the moments until we met again. When I was much younger, I would hate the scale and try to avoid it if possible. I remember visiting a weight loss clinic when I was in my 20’s and the nurse telling me that the scale they had to weigh me on was “special.” I did not understand, but she seemed happy to continue, telling me that they did not make scales that weighed people who were 389 lbs, they simply did not go up that high and that the scale I was standing on was the kind that are used to weigh baby cows. Really!? She equated me to a baby cow…well, that sure did not do much for my self-esteem, especially since I had been teased and bullied all my life, being called a whale, amongst many other things. Nevertheless, these days, my friend is not always so good to me; there are days when I feel betrayed, because I know it does not always state the truth. I used to depend on the scale, it was something I could count on and now, it just taunts me.livestock being weighed

Slowly, I push the button and wait for the beep, telling me it is ready for me to stand upon it’s precious pedestal, I step up, holding my breath, refusing to look down, listening to it countdown…5, 4, 3, 2, 1…beep, beep, beep. Now, I am allowed to look, Slowly I bow my head, looking down, hoping today it will give me the reward that I need so much, I let my breath out with a sigh of relief, 4 ounces, today it has given me 4 ounces, it has rewarded my hard work. These days any downward trend is a sign of victory, a reward for me, today, I am relieved, my friend was good to me. Perhaps tomorrow’s visit will also be a blessing to our friendship.

I don’t know if I will ever be able to end my addiction, is there a cure? I wonder if it will ever be possible to be without the scale, to rely on its half-truths. Will I be able to put it in the back of my mind and visit only occasionally? Or, will there come a time where I am able to just end our relationship and cut off my addiction, never to be seen again?

rewardI don’t know what the answers to those questions are, but I do know where I will be tomorrow morning…standing there, naked and barefoot, holding my breath, hoping for the smallest of rewards.