The Never-Neverland of Comparison Revisited

Twice last week, I was engaged in conversations with mothers who stammered in describing and apologizing for their offspring's disAbilities. In light of autism, ADD, said one mother, was of little measure. Another mother minimized her child's significant physical disabilities in light of the fact that her child was not cognitively or socially impaired. I still say, if it's yours, it's yours, regardless of the form of difficulty and challenge….There's no comparing….[This is a repost of this piece that appeared here nearly a year ago.] 


Photo: seier+seier+seier

"What are YOU doing here?" It wasn't the first time I'd had an evil eye aimed at me in the line at Weight Watchers. Last time it happened I must've been suffering from an aggressive case of PMS.
Because I WAS aggressive with the woman who dared as to ask the
question with disdain. She turned to leave as soon as she jousted the
question my way, stepping off the scale, folding up her weigh-in book
and proceeding to leave the Y before our little weekly meeting started.
"WAIT!" I said to her loudly, causing her to spin around and look at me
with an expression of surprise. "I'm not letting you get away with that

I lifted my shirt several inches and
inadvertently pushed my yoga pants down so low that my Victoria's
Secrets were showing. "That's nothing," a couple other women piped in.
"Listen, you guys," I lectured them. "This is not about comparing
ourselves to each other. We are each on a personal journey here and
whatever you have to lose — 100 pounds or 16…I've seen members over
the last nine years attend faithfully to lose both numbers — it's
about YOU! Not anyone else's numbers! We're here to support one
another. Not compare ourselves." (Do not mess with me during a bout of PMS. I'm warnin' ya.)

It's a lesson (not the PMS…the comparing) that I learned well during my autism journey…which is what launched me into Weight Watchers
the first time. Thirty pounds of self-nurture in the form of food post
diagnosis. After five years of yo-yo-ing, fretting and schlepping it
around, I finally swallowed hard and joined a group. I lost the weight,
mastered some great tools, made some great friends that are still
friends today. And, I kept off the weight for eight years until I met
my gourmet fiance two years ago.  Since January, I've been hell-bent
(most of the time) in losing the 15 I carelessly gained back.

Back to the lesson. It's true,
we can always find someone who has circumstances more dire-seeming than
our own–or less so. But it's about you. It's about me. If it's
yours, it yours. If it's mine, it's mine. No Ifs, Ands or Buts.
Regardless if it's pain (physical or emotional), disAbility or weight
loss. It's about the journey. Your journey. Comparison can be toxic and
a major trip up. Feel what you need to feel. Then find a route to
maneuver your way out. And beware of comparisons. (And curly-headed
blondes with PMS.)

Ahem. Rant over.

0 Responses to The Never-Neverland of Comparison Revisited

  1. Amen! I can’t tell you how much I agree. We can always say that somebody has it worse or better or whatever. But it just doesn’t matter. All that matters is what YOU have to deal with…and how you do it. Thanks for saying it so well.

  2. Good for you, Leisa. There are times to brush off stuff; other times it is so Right On to address–
    bottom line: it’s your journey, but we’re all this in together.

    (btw, I am a big fan of Weight Watchers–it does work.)

  3. FABULOUS words, Leisa! what a great example of really turning around a situation to empowers yourself and others at the same time–just brilliant! Good luck with those last 15 lbs. ;o) Thanks so much for visiting me at my photo blog! Happy Weekend :o)

  4. Umm. Snicker. Blush. Thank you. Really: thank you. The blushing comes in that I realize I didn’t edit the old piece. I now have 20 extra, not 15. Apparently I yo-yo’d bc I got it back to 10 and then added five back this fall (the fall of The Book,)and then topped off with 5 more at the end. Oh, Lord. There is such a big difference in weight loss at 50 vs. at 40, the last time. Dang.

  5. Loved reading this at Autisable and have enjoyed visiting you here at your blog home. I do resonate with this especially since my own weight has plateaued since we started the diagnosis journey a few months ago. I need to kick it back into high gear! 🙂

  6. Thanks for coming over, Annette. I just has a WAKE UP call about how much traffic Autisable’s sending me. They found & syndicated me and I’ve never gotten them on my radar. this prompted me to get in touch with them and find out how to do better. I’ve been absent over there. Oh, no.

    What parents must keep in mind is that we have an extra responsibility to take care of ourselves. I failed to revise that post as I gained 10 extra pounds this year with my book’s publishing. I cannot believe the different 10 pounds and 10 years makes to my health. It’s very scary. So, I’m back on track.

  7. Leisa, I love it! You are so right. Comparison is toxic. Why do we women do it to ourselves???

    (I can totally see you getting that woman’s attention and showing her your belly. LOL.)