By in Personal

I looked like an elephant!

I'm going through a bit of a "crisis". I am 5'5" and have always weighed between 120 and 125 pounds. My thyroid acted up recently and my hormones have started to screw up and I now weigh 132 pounds. No big deal right? shouldn't be but those few pounds completely change how I view myself and how I look. I can't imagine how a few pounds can turn a slim woman into an elephant but let me tell you, a family member innocently posted a pic of me from the side sitting down that she took without me knowing on Facebook and I nearly cried. I actually texted her to PLEASE remove the pic before anyone saw it. I was wearing a fairly loose charcoal grey sweater and jeans. Just a casual visit. For some reason, I looked like I weighed double what I do. Or maybe I look that way for real. I freaked out.

Mind you, I AM hormonal and I have been freaking out a lot lately. I am going through what every woman goes though but I feel like I am all alone with my mood swings, hot flashes, and weight gain. Seeing that picture sent me straight into a depression I have yet to pull out of. I have always been slim. Skinny actually until I was about 35 and then my thyroid went crazy and I gained weight. I think I hit 140 pounds for a few months. But I didn't look bad then. NOW, I look HUGE! Maybe it is the way the few pounds were distributed. Maybe it's just that I need more muscle tone which I am working on nightly. Maybe it's just that the picture of me was taken at an awful angle. I don't know but I have yet to recover from my funk.

I can't control much in my life lately with so many changes and many health issues but I can control my weight. Well, COULD . My doctor said to not even try to get back down to 120-125 for quite a while. To let my hormones do what they do and to just exercise and eat healthy. No starving and no fasting. I would never starve or fast or do anything radical. I value my health over everything else. But daym....

I know I sound like a nut but I guess I am going through emotional changes as well as physical ones and they are causing me to be a lot more sensitive than usual. I would post the elephant pic but I made sure it was destroyed . Ugh. I kept asking my son if I REALLY looked like that and he kept saying I didn't and that it was an illusion because my sweater was bunching and I was leaning over a little. And I was close to the camera whereas the others were further away. Sounds plausible.


Please know I am aware that this issue is tiny. I know that first and foremost is my health and wellbeing (and that of my family of course) and a few pounds does NOT make me look elephantine. I know this in my sane brain. My crazy brain says I just lost all control over everything and I will never be the same. Ohhh, hormones. And I hear this change can take years to come full circle. My poor, poor family, friends, and even readers. Everyone is in for a rollercoaster of a ride. I am on one and bringing everyone with me!

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mimi88jade wrote on October 28, 2014, 1:14 AM

How old are you? Sorry for asking but I think hormonal changes especially to women are normal but you need to be relax, because if you are stress, we gain or lose weight.

PattyTherre wrote on October 28, 2014, 1:29 AM

I am almost 50 and definitely speeding toward the menopause. I just wish it would come and I could be whoever I am going to be for the last part of my life. Oh, I am always stressed out. I don't know how to live any other way. lol.

LoudMan wrote on October 28, 2014, 1:38 AM

Remember, these emotional states are physical! this is the good news, though. Since there's a physical cause, there's a physical solution. Just don't beat yourself up.

PattyTherre wrote on October 28, 2014, 1:43 AM

I was switched to a new thyroid medication because my old one wasn't working and, if this one works, I will lose weight naturally because my metabolism will be back to normal. I think. Who know anymore? I just reread this post and it sounds like I lost my mind. My poor husband lives with it everyday. He's been so supportive. Or else he's just scared I blow up or cry. Or both. lol. I am aware though that I am not an elephant and that I have much to be grateful for and much bigger things to worry about.

Dawnwriter wrote on October 28, 2014, 2:03 AM

#PattyTherre You have to pull yourself out of this state. Don't let a picture on Facebook destroy your life or peace of mind. Seek medical help for hormonal imbalance but also do things that make you feel good....writing, yoga, meditation, swimming, dancing or walking. Don't let a silly picture ruin your state of mind. Not all of us are photogenic.

MegL wrote on October 28, 2014, 2:36 AM

I am well over 60 now, though I don't have thyroid problems. My friend has an under active thyroid. She is a mountain climber and despite training, couldn't understand why she was so tired. Her doctor couldn't get round the fact that she was still climbing mountains, with the under active thyroid! She was also pre-diabetic but once the thyroid medication took effect, that went away. She now tells EVERYONE to get their thyroid levels checked, apparently under active thyroid is quite common. I am ignoring her. Weight lifting is very useful for everyone. It will tone up your muscles and women CANNOT bulk up, like men. When you tone your muscles they LOOK LOTS slimmer. Weight lifting strengthens your bones too. You can also get some funny looks because I can easily lift my 14Kg (31lb) granddaughter onto my shoulders in a single lift and carry her if she gets tired. Exercise is good for keeping stress away. It doesn't have to be weightlifting, I know it's not for everyone but brisk walking, swimming, dancing, fitness classes etc, anything that gets you puffing (not breathless) for 20 minutes will help regulate your moods.

Crin wrote on October 28, 2014, 2:45 AM

Ha, ha, ha, some of us married guys are familiar with the tune... We went through this, or we are going to go through it. So, don't worry. After all elephants are nice creatures. They have to be treated with respect. I would not like to cross one of them!

They are really cute and have good memory:

PattyTherre wrote on October 28, 2014, 3:12 AM

It will pass. I have been hit with some major medical issues recently which have been on high alert so I think I am just sensitive to everything. But I NEVER allow myself to wallow. I exercise daily, do yoga as well , eat healthy, and find joy wherever I can. I just needed to vent. I looked at myself a while ago in the mirror and I look fine. I just never want to see that one picture again. lol.

PattyTherre wrote on October 28, 2014, 3:16 AM

Thyroid issues are very common in women over 35. I have had a hypoactive one for a long time and am trying to get the right dose because it seems to go up and down a lot. I have lifted light (not super heavy because I have a neck injury) weights for years. i am lucky I have a good base as far as exercise goes. I always did both cardio and strength training and continue to. But I did have to stop for a bit when I had a major health issue. Glad to be back to it though. It gives me that control over my body that I crave. I don't know if I will lose these 7 stupid pounds but as long as I am toned, that is fine with me.

PattyTherre wrote on October 28, 2014, 3:18 AM

HAHAHA. My poor husband is trying so hard to understand why the same things that never bothered me before suddenly are big deals. I was so mad at him for buying a chair I hated although it was for him and he was stumped. Later I explained that I didn't even know why I CARED about the chair let alone was mad. It just seemed to be a good thing to rant about. Poor Don. :)

maxeen wrote on October 28, 2014, 7:03 AM

Sorry but i am giggling about the chair ! I have done that one many times.. I am older than a lot of you on here ,I am going to tell you that once the big M went away,I was in better health than I had ever been,more energy,more everything..
I had a lot of help with a tiny vitamin called E which helps with hot flushes and insomnia,Should be taken daily now....Yoga is fantastic, as is lots of walking...

paperdaisyflower7 wrote on October 28, 2014, 9:57 AM

guess I passed the hormonal stage I and 54 soon to be 55 :( so i guess I'm a hippo but I love it :)

LoudMan wrote on October 28, 2014, 10:08 AM

Well, dang. Here's my real picture, so you have something to feel better about. =54ACF8A3

Feisty56 wrote on October 28, 2014, 10:14 AM

I well understand what it feels like when there are so many issues in your life over which you have little or no control -- it's the seat of my panic and anxiety issues. When I feel overwhelmed, I try to find one issue to focus on over which I DO have control. As you mentioned, you know your overall health is important and it sounds to me like you do many of the right things to maintain good health. Maybe if you can shift your focus to those things, you'll feel a bit less helpless.

Bellatricks wrote on October 28, 2014, 10:35 AM

I used to always say that I looked like a whale. That was a year ago but since then I've lost 70 pounds. I cut out all the "extras" which includes dressings, sauces, toppings, butter, etc. Yes it might sound a little plain but I'm used to things like this now and I don't miss all that extra stuff anymore. I also drink a juice called mean green. It has kale, wheatgrass, kiwi, green apples, etc. Basically everything that's green vegetable and fruit wise in it. When I started drinking a cup of it every morning I started losing about 5 pounds a week!

SLGarcia wrote on October 28, 2014, 12:45 PM

Happily at 64 I am way, way past that. I am in lousy shape right now, but I know that will change. I am relatively healthy and I don't worry about it anymore. I know it may seem easy for me to say, but you'll get there eventually. It took me about 12 years, but I was done by 50, so I was young.

inertia4 wrote on October 28, 2014, 2:08 PM

PattyTherre Don't feel bad. My girlfriend is going through the change of life as well. And she used to be a size zero. Now she weighs 170 pounds. She seems to have given up. And eats out of control. So, you being 135 is doing good. Although my girlfriend is 5'8". Only a few inches taller. Just eat right and walk a lot. You will be fine.

paigea wrote on October 28, 2014, 2:25 PM

I hope you find a way to feel better and cope with all you must cope with. Take care

WordChazer wrote on October 28, 2014, 4:29 PM

I'm about the same size and build as you, so I have your back on this. Right now work is so crazy super mad busy I can't even think of getting out for a soul-aligning stress-busting power walk, but once things get back to normal in a couple of weeks (assessment deadline and new computer system rollout = meltdown!) I hope to be able to take my gear in and get walking round the campus a couple of times a week. And with that it's back to the 100 page document I need to format before we present it to the assessors next week.

imphavok wrote on October 28, 2014, 5:51 PM

I'm 43 and dealing with pre-menopause already. It can get really overwhelming. Huge hugs to you. Things will get better and the hormones will calm down a bit

Isabella wrote on October 28, 2014, 10:14 PM

Us women don't have it easy, do we? There are so many stages we go threw, it's incredible. The fact that we all change in someway or other at different stages in our lives is inevitable, but where it gets complicated is the pressure that society puts on us and then compounded by the unreasonable expectations we impose on ourselves. Now that's a tough act to follow; unfortunately we are bombarded with crazy publicity, wild and unreasonably maintained illusion we buy into. So when we deviate slightly from society's expectations, we punish ourselves even harder then others could possibly do, only because we know our weaknesses best. I hope your health gets back on track again very soon my dear and don't be so hard on yourself. You are a beautiful woman, never forget that...

BarbRad wrote on October 29, 2014, 1:53 AM

I feel for you. I went through this same process. It seemed the day I turned 35 the pounds started to come on. I've never been able to get back to what I consider my ideal weight.

acrogodess914 wrote on December 16, 2014, 4:17 PM

I think perhaps the picture was just taken at a bad angle. You look amazing for someone with adult children. Heck, I didn't even look like you as a teen. :)