Jameela Jamil (Tahani in The Good Place – if you haven’t seen it, you have a treat ahead of you) recently posted on Instagram about how ridiculous it is that women are so often seen entirely in terms of their weight, when everyone is made up of so much more than kilograms.
She started the “I Weigh” movement in response, asking people to highlight all the things that make them “them”, and I love it. I couldn’t care less what my friends weigh. I love them because they’re brilliant, fascinating people who make my life infinitely better just by existing.
The more I thought about that, the more I realised I need to start applying that logic to myself, and this seemed like a good place to start, so – here’s what I truly weigh.
I weigh as much as I can deadlift, and the dedication and training that’s letting me run further each week, and the hundred burpees I sometimes do just to remind myself that I can. The three mountains I’ve climbed, and the hilarious adventures we had getting there.
I’m big enough to hold the love of, and love for, a huge group of friends and a family and an excessively needy cat. To hold every secret I’ve been trusted with and every fear that’s been shared. To handle laughing until I can barely breathe, and to talk non-stop for hours with some of the best people anyone could have the good fortune to meet.
I’m the heaviness of a broken and mended and scarred and hopeful heart that often feels too big for my chest. The heaviness of anger and fear and frustration at so much of the world, because I often care too much.
I’m the light of every compliment I’ve been given, the hugs I’ve received when I’ve needed them most, the kisses that still make me smile when I think of them, and the conversations we had at 3am.
I’m independent and brave and determined.
I’m a passionate feminist.
I’m the desire to leave the world a better place than when I got here.
I’m magic and space and dinosaurs and dancing all night.
I’m made up of every song I’ve ever heard, every word sung at the top of my lungs in a sweaty venue, every lyric that’s made me feel less alone, and every note that’s made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up.
I carry the impression of two dozen countries, of more amazing people and beautiful sunsets and mind-blowing experiences than I could ever remember.
I’m sticky pints at a tiny gig, whisky from the bottle when we should all know better, gin and tonic from cans in the park and so much prosecco because there’s always something worth celebrating. I’m meals out with friends, roast dinners with family in the house I grew up in and cheesy chips in dodgy kebab shops.
I’m the sum of the knowledge of spelling tests, GCSEs, A-Levels, degrees, diplomas, three different careers, countless museums, David Attenborough documentaries and decades of reading anything I can get my hands on. I’m the space I have left for a lifetime more learning.
I weigh as many kilograms of joy and adventure and doing my best as you can fit into 5 feet 2 of a person.
And if all of this really is my true weight, I look forward to being absolutely massive by the time I’m done.