Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall

I'm in a funk today.

What do you see when YOU look in the mirror? Is it the same thing that you see when you look at a picture of yourself?

I was talking with a friend recently about how those 2 images present very different people to my eye. When I look in the mirror, I don't see the fat girl with unruly hair and skin that needs nourishing. I see the 17 year old version of myself who was rockin' the Banana Republic skinny jeans and cream colored cable-knit sweater like a runway model. Who was also a size 6. I'm not a size 6 now.

However, when I look in at pictures of myself, I'm reminded of why I HATE to be photographed. I will run in the opposite direction upon seeing the lens of a camera. And I've not enjoyed being photographed for many years, but it's gotten worse over the last few years. I see the overweight girl with the unruly hair and the Rosacea red face. I don't like that girl. I mean, she's perfectly nice and all and way cool, but I can't stand to look at her. Because she's not me.

I spent most of my school years worrying incessantly that I looked like my mother. She's been obese for as long as I can remember. I was convinced that I looked just like her back then. Isn't it amazing how distorted the image of yourself can be? Back then, there were at least 16 sizes between she & I. Now, the gap is much closer and it scares me.

I'm just wondering 2 things today.
1. Why don't I see the same "me" in the mirror that I see in pictures?
2. What is it going to take to get me to get this weight off for good and keep me "on the wagon" of weight loss? And will it happen already!

Ok, pity party over with. Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.


Hot Tub Lizzy said...

Pooh bear - are you reading my mind??

Since Febuary of 06, I lost 80 pounds... over the summer I gained back 15. I'm wearing pants today that are definetly borderline too small. I feel fat and ugly and yucky and lazy and failureish.

This morning I looked in the mirror and sort of liked who I saw. This weekend I let Essie take pictures of me. Yeah.. they're in the recycle bin.

I don't have much advice, just hugs and knowing that I've been there too.

Lula! said...

You need my purple satin heels today. Seriously. Go read my post--it explains why.

You are so thought-provoking...I'm just whiny. Sigh...

Kat said...

I look at pictures of me and wonder how I got so huge. I don't feel huge. I don't see huge when I look in the mirror. But those pictures. With the double chins. Verging on a triple. Ugh.

And I do the same as you when looking back at high school pictures. I thought I was huge then. Oh, what I would give to be that size now.

But I think I'll just have another handful of peanut m&ms and call it a day.

Shelle-BlokThoughts said...

that's a hard one because it's different for EVERYONE...but I know the best way for me has just been doing what they all want us to do anyway...

Stay Active...Eat Right...I know as I lose the pounds that I feel better about myself and see myself differently!

Kelly said...

Oh my friend, I so feel your pain. I am so glad to hear that the phenomenon of seeing the "skinny girl" in the mirror and the "fat girl" in pictures isn't just me and a sign of my impending mental illness (hallucinations, anyone?!)

I actually love to see you in pictures...I just have to smile when I see you...you give off such a good vibe, or chi, or I don't know...you just look like you're a lot of fun and super, super nice!

Feel better!

Michelle said...

Well I hate pictures, too, but mostly because they truly DON'T look like me. There are many where I'm not even recognizable as myself (and not in a good way). I'm not sure what the problem is.

My wee ones are frequently not as photogenic as they are in person either. And I finally put my finger on it. The photograph captures and instant in time and doesn't see the life and movement and happiness under the skin that is what makes them and so many others beautiful. That's why photos aren't as good as the in-person version.

Oh, and ummm Sparkpeople.com. Truly. It so works. It isn't easy and never will be but it works.

Lula! said...

You need to hit Lulaville first thing tomorrow. And I need your address. And that's all I'm sayin'.


Brandy said...

Uh oh! Looks like you won something. Early congrats!

I hear you about the pictures. I obsess over getting it "just right" which really means hiding any obvious flaws.

Good thing I have Stevie to remind me I'm beautiful to him no matter what.

Shannon said...

See... we're not the only ones. Shane still thinks I'm crazy for believing this... but it is so true!

Ugh, why can't we just be like men and not give a crap?!??!

CrystalChick said...

I've never been as heavy as I am right now. Yikes, not even when I was preggo.
But it is what it is. I am trying to be happy with the extra weight because I'm obviously not into working too hard to get it off. I was on a medical diet a few years ago and lost 50 pounds. I looked the best I had in many many years but it was a very strict diet and when I was able to go off of it I gained all the weight back plus some extra just for shits and giggles. Don't know what I was thinking. I'm in my mid
40's and with family history of larger women and hormone issues it's a bit of a battle. While I try to figure it all out, the best I can do is
Not a single picture of me goes up on the blog until it's been 'fixed' with some decent lighting, or some clone stamping on a wrinkle or two, and liquify.... OMG, that is THEE best tool for photo editing. Ten pounds GONE. Twenty if I'm really feeling FAT. LOL
It's a frumpy gals best friend. ;)

Well, the pics I've seen of you on here show a very happy, fun, vibrant person. Your smile is beautiful! Awesome curly hair. And the love you have for your family. That all shows. So just be you 'cause you ROCK, whether thin or not!

Kori said...

I so know what you mean. But not to worry cause even the size 6 girls think their big too. I think it's just the way we're wired.

Cristin said...

I feel your pain. I was such a cutie in my teens, and I'll admit... a hottie in college... now I'm fully frumpy and haggard... I see a glimmer of the hottie in the mirror.. I miss her..

Rhea said...

I'm in a funk today. I feel worthless and pathetic. And have no hope. I hate it when I get down like this.

While I'm sorry you're feeling sucky too, I'm relieved I'm not the only one.

Shannon said...

You've been BOO'd... come see what you need to do...

Angela said...

Hey there,

I'm a little late responding and I'm so sorry. You know all that's been going on around here.

First, you are BEAUTIFUL at ANY weight. I've known you for a long time now so I can say that for sure. You are wonderful person, friend, mom and wife and THAT is what we all see when we look at you. I don't know a single woman who is happy with her weight - seriously, even when people are a size 2 it seems they think they aren't acceptably thin. And of course you know my recent struggles in this area.

But meanwhile, I agree with Michelle's take on photos. I hate most photos of me, not because I hate myself, but just because like she said, I really don't look at them and see me. I see someone, but it's not who I think I am or what I think I look like... and I think Michelle may be onto something with the issue of a photo capturing an instant - not the moments before or after it was taken. There's so much context missing in that instant. So don't worry a bit about photos. They aren't who we are and neither is an image in a mirror - who we are is really on the inside.

PS I'm sending Rhea a hug too!

Love always! Your BFF


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