I was having a chat with a friend last night after our AMAZING ZUMBA class (that was totally worth the sweat!), about body parts. And the Innocuous belly button came up in conversation.
Now this blog post is something I have been toying with, so I think I should put a reader warning up. Any time a woman starts talking about body parts, you know it will get a little real, raw and graphic, so BEWARE. You may close your laptop window or SmartPhone screen now, while you still have a chance to get out.
When you Google Image “belly button”, these are the typical images that pop up:
Placed neatly, with no effort, the belly button, or ‘navel’ has it’s purpose during our 40 week term in our mother’s wombs, but after that, it really has no agenda. It may be used as a land mark to the centre of our body, when taking measurements or a good spot to figure out how high to move up to perform the upward thrust motion if choking (formerly The Heimlich Maneuver). All great but fairly insignificant uses. Some people decide to tattoo around their button, get it pierced, or just forget it’s there, maybe giving it a bit of clean from sweater lint and crumbs.
But, the topic today is what happens to that little body part when you gain weight. In my pre-teen and teen years, heading into University, I really didn’t carry a lot of weight in my mid-section. I had a little bit of extra inches, but I always carried below the navel, making buying pants an impossibility as my waist was super tiny and my hips and thighs heavier. My belly button was positioned just as it was intended, as this lovely woman is displaying in the picture (although I had a bit more pudge than she).
Then, something happened… I went from 199 lbs in my last year of University to close to 270 about 10 years later along with carrying two babies, and what THAT process does to our buttons is all but a whole other blog post!
My button decided to make its way South, like real South. For those who have never carried weight in their tummies, you wont understand this. And it is my hope through this blog that you begin to understand the trials, tribulations and barriers living an obese life can bring. My belly button was located somewhere down mid-thigh. Yep! My weight gain shifted from my legs and butt, to my mid-section. And the results where terrifying.
Now, do me a favour and Google Images ‘belly button overweight’ and you will get a mental picture of what I’m talking about. The human body is pretty spectacular. It’s ability to stretch, flex, morph, bounce back is nothing short of a miracle.
Why the post? Well, one of my all time wins in this weight loss path is my belly button’s own transformation journey – I am happy to say, it has gradually made the trek back up my mid-section and is sitting nicely in the middle of my torso. I have lost almost 15 inches around my widest part of my body and for that, my belly button thanks and applauds me. It often times looks at me over top my purple lace panties’ waist band and smiles. There are days it’s a little more spherical than oval (mainly due to a bad choice meal the day before), but I relish in the thought that with some water and exercise, it will bounce right back to where it belongs.
So to all of you who may have body parts that have moved with the expansion of your body, know that your own transformation journey will gladly return those little devils back to where they once where. Maybe not perfectly, but they’ll get there. The back fat will dissolve, the double chin will shrink back, heck, you may even go down a shoe size (this has happened to me too). Just keep going. And whether you’re open like me about your body, or just talk to your reflection in the mirror when you notice these changes, keep telling your body how awesome it is. Because it carries you every day, gets you through the shit of life and celebrates when you need it.
Taking the next few days off! Enjoy.