A Weighty Idiosyncrasy

If you’ve been with me even a short time already, you know I have my share of idiosyncrasies. I hope you do, too. I’d hate to be all by myself that way.

I describe the idiosyncrasy I’m talking about today as “weighty” because it has to do with my weight. See? That’s not very complicated, is it?

I’ve been in a battle with my weight practically my whole life. Don’t ask me why I remember this so vividly, but when I was in the sixth grade I weighed 148 and was a lot shorter than my adult 5’6″ height. The folks at church thought I was cute being so fat. I didn’t.

My parents finally decided to do something about it, and I trimmed down quite a bit

But–doggone it!–weight loss never seems to be permanent. I’ll bet I’ve gained and lost a thousand pounds over the years, although it’s felt more like I only gained a thousand and kept it.

When I started teaching school, I was always eating something I shouldn’t have had, and I managed to gain a good twenty pounds or so. A “good twenty pounds”? I don’t think so!

My clothes didn’t fit and I felt miserable. But I cut back on my eating and starting bicycling a lot. I bought some great looking clothes that wouldn’t fit until I reached my goal. I went from at least 177 down to 148 or less, and I was proud of myself. That was my first weight loss effort as an adult.

But, alas! it snuck back on over the years. It’s hard to pick a weight at which I would automatically decide I had to lose weight again. But it happened. Over and over again.

About three years ago I was diagnosed as being diabetic, type 2. The doctor told me to watch the scales, not the carbs. Huh?

Hmm. I’d made it up to 208. Not good. So I took Dr. Ashe’s statement seriously. I worked slowly and carefully. It took a year-and-a-half to lose fifty pounds, and I was determined that–for once–I was going to control my weight and never have to diet again.

But I’d been equally determined far too many other times, although not motivated by health needs, and I’d always backslidden.

Okay, you say. You understand. Maybe you’ve had an ongoing battle with your weight, too. Or ought to be concerned but you haven’t been motivated to do anything yet. Or maybe you’re close to someone who has a weight problem. Who isn’t?

So where’s the idiosyncrasy?

I keep a datebook in the bathroom and record my weight on a regular basis. I accept the fact that there will be minor fluctuations from day to day, but I make myself aware of those and fret whenever the figure goes up more than seems reasonable.

But that probably still doesn’t qualify as an idiosyncrasy.

How about the fact that I consider the first day of the month a crucial time–and even more so the first day of the year?


I keep an Excel spreadsheet of my weight; it goes back a number of years, although for a while I only kept track of the January 1 readings. I’m already fretting about the likelihood that I’ll probably weigh three pounds more on January 1, 2015, than I did the first of this year.

Fretting. I mean big-time fretting. Here I did so well so long, and I feel like I’m losing the battle. Starting to, anyhow.

I can eat the way I need to forever if I can avoid temptation. But add a week’s vacation away from home to dinner out with friends at a Cheesecake Factory and another dinner out with friends at a Captain George’s Seafood Restaurant (at least I didn’t have the buffet, which would’ve required me to fully pig out to try to eat my money’s worth) and I’m in trouble.

Yes, I know. Three pounds isn’t that much. But every successful diet has always concluded with failures like those. And they’ve always led to more.

I HAVE to keep it off this time, though. I refuse to buy bigger clothes again.

What do you say? Is weight your problem, or is something else equally frustrating to you? Please leave a comment.


I’ll be back again on Sunday. If you’d like to receive my posts by email, go to “Follow Blog via Email” at the upper right.

“On Aging Gracelessly” is only one of my two blogs. I use “As I Come Singing” to post lyrics of the Christian songs I’ve written over the last fifty years. Check it out HERE if you’re interested. . Free lead sheets (tune, words, and chords) are available for many of them. View the list HERE.

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Best regards,

4 thoughts on “A Weighty Idiosyncrasy

  1. Rog, really… three pounds? you are hysterical… When you look at the color of your hair or the tone of your skin does it bother you? Or your shoe size maybe? How about the length of your tongue or the timbre of your voice? All the things about you were genetically programmed in your genes at the moment of conception. The same goes for bone mass, muscle configuration, metabolism. And all these things impinge upon your weight. Sure, there are the extreme folks who ”shape” or ”sculpt” their figures, but only through intense work and sacrifice. For most of us humans, however, we are tall or short or big or small because that’s the way we are. This ugly myth promulgated by the insurance industry wherein they show you tables and graphs of how much you should weigh for a certain height is hogwash. I can’t begin to believe we were put here on Earth to worry ourselves into thrombosis over the fact that we weigh more or less than this ”ideal” person or that ”normal” example. Nope. I think one of the delicious things about humanity is our individual make up, our distinct traits and gifts. Adam was told to go forth and ”fill the Earth” with offspring. If we were all meant to be exactly alike, well Adam would have been given the divine power to self-replicate into clones. But nope. I think the PLAN was the exciting idea of mixing genetic material in order to produce a myriad of distinct yet wonderful beings… now I’m going too far afield… So no more fretting… Enjoy yourself. I know a guy who was the son of a preacher. He would run 5 miles a day. He never smoked. He wasn’t a drinker but on occasion sipped a beer with his meal. Married his high school sweetheart and never had relations with any other woman. This guy was clean. and he died of cancer at 35, not because of anythuing he did or didn’t do. It was genetic predisposition. SO Merry Christmas to you and enjoy a slice of cake without guilt… Tom


  2. Very thought-provoking comment, as always. I value my individuality, but my weight issue is heatlh-related. Being an individual doesn’t free me from the need to use a reasonable amount of self-discipline, though. Oh, and I did enjoy a slice of cake…with minimum guilt. And I actually was only two pounds over last year’s Jan. 1 weight. Now I have a whole year to get rid of those two pounds. Not because they’re hurting me, but to keep from rationalizing that two or three more won’t hurt me, either. *G*

    By the way, when will you be in the States?


  3. What’s frustrating for me is the back-and-forth way doctors tell us how we should live in order to be healthy. Now I’ve just read that most, if not all, cancers are just bad luck, a chance occurance… with very little environmental influence. I feel that genetic suceptablitly is the most important determiner in our health. Either you’re gonna be all right or you’re not. Medicine helps with certain conditions as does some dietary controls. But, for the most part, you are who you are and no amount of tinkering will change much. and 2 pounds is like maybe, what – 1 or 2% of your weight… a very small tolerance for good health. What makes me happy is you are looking good and your writing is crisp and precise… which shows good health in general.


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