This is me, September 2007. Greta sent the pic to me a week or so ago. I flipped thru the packet, then shoved the pictures back into the envelop and then stowed the packet away, hidden from view. I dug it out today, because I wanted to actually LOOK at myself.
I don't look at me. I don't see my self in the mirror. I might focus on my teeth, or my hair, or some other piece and part of me. I don't give physical self attention, any more than the hurried cursory token that is a painful aversion. That might be why I take the fastest showers you've ever known. I jump thru them, scrubbing myself quickly, thoroughly, toweling off just as roughly and completely. Then clothing myself in elastic pjs, with t-shirts and stretched sweaters and socks. Utilitarian, warm, snuggly, comfy.
Two years ago, I lost thirty pounds. I've kept that weight off, stayed within the five pound leeway (because women do bloat monthly, and shed that bloat as their hormonal tides wax and wane). The plateau has become a plain.
Now it is time for me to begin to lose again. So, I need to give my body attention. I need to exercise. To do that, I will feel myself. I will sweat and be aware of my body. And to do that, I need to be able to see me, feel me, to accept me.
I don't seek reassurances, negations; "you are not fat". I don't take comfort in qualifiers (medication issues, side-effects, and inadequate levels of thyroxine). I don't ask my guy, "do these pants make me fat?" cuz it is not the pants' fault. I know I am fat.
I am not pleasantly plump. Or pudgy. Or big and beautiful. I am fat. In fact, at 200 pounds and 5'6", I am obese. My body mass index is lower than what some might think, because I am dense (in more ways than one) but no matter how you slice it, I am morbidly obese.
I could write a ton more, but I won't. At least not in this entry. But I will say that I am seeing this picture of me, and realizing the actual impact. I cannot ignore my weight, my health, my laboring heart, my stressed joints, my huffing/puffing winded lungs that gasp for air.
This is me.