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Hi.

My name is Madelyne Riley, welcome to my blog. Anorexic turned foodie, I'm here to champion eating disorder recovery and body positivity.  I'm having my cake, eating it too, then going back for seconds.  

I Wanted to Lose Weight and I Didn't and it was Fine Part III; The Blue Lagoon

I Wanted to Lose Weight and I Didn't and it was Fine Part III; The Blue Lagoon

My husband and I returned from a trip to Iceland last week. YES, it was as incredible and awe-inspiring as they say. YES, we went to the Blue Lagoon, and YES you have to go as well.

I booked our Iceland Golden Circle tour many months ago. It was a sizable expense, and I wanted to have it paid for and completely out of mind by the time we landed in the infamously expensive country. Do you know what my first thought was? I would love to tell you it was something along the lines of “I’m so excited to see this place,” or “I can’t wait to experience a nature in a way I never have before,” or even, “Wow, I can’t wait for vacation!” but it wasn’t. I thought “I have five months to lose weight. I want to look good in a swim suit for the Blue Lagoon.”

You know what? I didn’t lose weight. That doesn’t meant I’m lazy, that doesn’t mean I’m a failure, in fact it means quite the opposite. I am at a healthy weight and have been for a while now, and it’s important that I stay there, regardless of how much I want to lose. You know what else? It didn’t matter. This may shock you, but the Blue Lagoon has no weight requirement, no BMI requirement, and no muscle-mass requirement. As long as you’re wearing a swimsuit, they don’t care how good you look in it. If anything, my weight meant there was more of me to enjoy that wonderful place, more skin to steep in the steaming cerulean splendor.

Skip ahead to four months later. I was enjoying the gorgeous blue hot springs with the love of my life, and the idea that I once thought I had to look a certain way in order to truly enjoy myself in a place like this seemed ludicrous. Of course it was ludicrous, I always knew that, but I finally felt just how crazy it was to be concerned about your weight all of the damn time. We had spent that day exploring Iceland’s Golden Circle. We had seen so much unimaginable natural beauty that day, that our lives seemed very small, and short, and precious. As I soaked my body, tired from jet-lag and the climbing it had done that day, relaxing into the depths of the lagoon with the person who had been by my side for the past eight years, the enormity of just how lucky I am overwhelmed me. I took time to really notice where I was, and who I was with, and tried to pay attention to how close to perfection my life was at that moment. How I looked in my swimsuit was honestly the last thing on my mind, and that felt incredible.

I suppose the trick to getting over this constant need to weigh a certain amount or to look a certain way is to remember how short life is, and how insignificant the number on the scale is to the “big picture.” That’s easy to say, and honestly seems quite obvious, I’ve heard it from many experts in this field, but man, it’s a much more difficult thing to practice. For now, I think I found a personal solution to my weight anxiety. Whenever I’m having a particularly dark day, a day in which I do not feel worthy because of the way I look, I’ll take a step out of my normal routine and do something that reconnects me to what it means to be alive. I’ll go for a hike, I’ll look at the stars, or at least do my best to remember Iceland, to remember how absurd the notion of caring about a waistline seemed to me then, to remember all of the wonderful things I was thinking about instead, and to practice that mental state.

I wanted to lose weight for the Blue Lagoon and I didn’t and it was fine. It was more than fine. For the first time in my life, I did not care about how much I weighed, and I am so grateful to have felt that, if only for a day.

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This Eff-Ing Sweatshirt

This Eff-Ing Sweatshirt