When this post is published, I will be on holiday. Presumably, at some point on said holiday, I will be wearing swimwear. As I write this, I have one day before going on holiday, and yesterday’s try-on session of bikinis and swimsuits was nothing short of an ordeal. The thought of putting on swimwear is making me feel slightly ill.

So let’s come out with it; I’ve gained weight.

Well, I can’t be 100% sure of that, because I actually haven’t weighed myself in years, and I certainly don’t intend to start again now. The reasons for that are another story for another time, but my changed appearance coupled with the fact that I can’t get into some of my clothes tells me all I need to know – and I’m finding it tricky to deal with.

I’m sure no one needs an explanation, but despite the fact that I know I don’t need to excuse my body for doing what bodies do I feel obliged to give a reason. It’s very simple; over the past few months I’ve eaten more and moved less than I generally do. My weight has always fluctuated and I’ve never been someone that maintains a consistent size no matter what they consume. This means that both losing weight and gaining weight are things which seem to happen fairly regularly for me, although I’m sure you can guess which one is easiest and I’m sure the more difficult one will get even more so as I get older. Even understanding that though, dealing with weight gain mentally is a bit of a minefield, especially if you have any history with issues in that area.

I’m obviously generalising when I say this, but getting bigger is, let’s face it, seen as the ‘wrong’ way to be doing things. A woman should only ever be aiming to get smaller, of course. How many times have you heard something along the lines of ‘she looked great, she’s lost some weight’ or ‘she’s let herself go, she looked bigger than she used to be’? These sorts of phrases being commonplace really underlines the fact that gaining weight is broadly seen as a failure.

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