Mirror, Mirror On The Wall

8 comments

Who do you see when you look in the mirror??

What size and shape do you see when you look back at your own reflection??

Mirror

Image found here

One of my favorite WW meeting members came up to us after last Thursday’s  meeting to talk to my mother and I.  She first congratulated me for having another successful week and to thank my mother sharing her story.  She said that she related with my mother and the things she said but she was always too afraid to admit them or say them out loud herself.  I love this woman because she always seems to have a smile on her face and is so positive, even after being at Weight Watchers for over 4 years.

The one thing that she said that really stuck out to my was the story she told us about how when she tried on a pair of jeans the other day she caught a glimpse of herself in the mirror and she couldn't believe what she saw.  She said that never in her life had she looked at herself that way.  She is a bigger woman who due to certain issues helps to get around with a cane.  The first thought that came to her mind was disbelief.  She said that if she saw a woman walking the down the street who looked the woman she just saw in the mirror she would automatically think ‘oh my, that poor woman. She doesn't love herself.’.  Then she realized, oh shit, that woman IS me!!

I think this happens to us all of us…skinny, fat, tall, short, wide, lean, you name it!  I think we have this image of ourselves in our head and as we change we often cannot change that image to reflect how we may really look.  I struggle with this lately.  Everyone keeps talking about how great or “skinny” I look.  I mean, I do think I look pretty damn good lately and on some days, I do feel skinny.  But overall, I still see the chubby girl in the mirror.  I still have a hard time picking up a size medium shirt now instead of an XL and I still see fat rolls and bulges when I smooth out my clothes.  Trying to pick out my goal weight has been difficult because of this.  I’ve been trying to put myself inside my body to try and get a better feel for how I *really* look.

I think we keep that old image of how we used to look fresh in our minds because it provides us with a sense of comfort.  If we start looking at ourselves in a different way, do we then become different people?  Do the things we love about ourselves change and go away? 

All of this really goes back to this past weeks meeting and the topic of ‘self discovery’.  Weight loss is not just about the number you see on the scale.  It’s not just about what you accomplish fitness wise.  It is not just about what new size of clothes you can fit into.  It is about becoming the *YOU* that *YOU WANT TO BE*!! 

And sometimes realizing that and figuring that part out is the scariest and hardest part of this whole journey. 

8 comments:

  1. oh man I can relate. I feel like that FAT girl is still looking at me MOST days. Sometimes I pass by a mirror and just look at myself- I can't believe when I go to get clothes that they are NOT plus size. My pants do not have a 22 on the tag, but a 10. My tops use to read XXL, now a M. I still see my flaws, still do not feel comfortable in my new body and what I thought would be a goal weight (160-which WW says is too heavy for me) is not where I want to be. I sent my goal at 145- we shall see!

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  2. Having that a-ha moment of "Whoa, is that me?!" was what started me down this road. I always knew I was big, but one day I caught a reflection of myself and realized I was the size I always swore I would never be. It had to stop there. Now I feel smaller than I am even though I know I am not. The bonus of this is little bit more self-confidence when dealing with people. Its my favorite thing about working out so far.

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  3. I totally know what you mean. I am still and will always be the 287 pound woman I once was. Even when I was 150 pounds and when I get there again. Even know at 225 pounds. It's hard to get over being overweight when that is all you have ever known and when people treat you so differently. We are told that being overweight is wrong and ugly and that we are different just because we are heavier then others. It's like a disease to some people when it's not.

    The first time I realized I was no longer overweight (of course this was 6 years ago) was when a friend of mine who had never known me heavy, picked me up over his shoulder and pretended to throw me in the snow like it was no big deal. That was my OMG I'm "normal" moment.

    BTW-you look great. Keep up the great work.

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  4. I went through this with my mom when she was so ill. She lost over 100 lbs in a just 2 or 3 months due to illness and when we went to buy her new clothes, she wouldn't/couldn't accept that she was now a size 12 instead of a 22. It was eye opening to me about self visualization. It was interesting, her heart was broken because things she loved to wear at that heavier weight were more important to her than the recognition that she was closer to her ideal weight than she had been since she became pregnant with her first child some 50+ years before. The human mind boggles.

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  5. You wrote ..."I think we keep that old image of how we used to look fresh in our minds because it provides us with a sense of comfort."

    I agree totally, but it works the other way too. I have been gaining weight steadily my whole married life (3 babies in between). When I look in "my" mirror I see ME. The gorgeous, thin me. It's only when I catch a glimpse of myself in a shop window reflection that I see what I really look like. In a way, the dysmorphia works because I feel good about myself no matter what my weight.

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  6. You said: "Everyone keeps talking about how great or “skinny” I look. I mean, I do think I look pretty damn good lately and on some days, I do feel skinny. But overall, I still see the chubby girl in the mirror."

    I totally understand this. While everyone at work - even one of the teachers who is a personal trainer on the side - keeps telling me how great/skinny/etc I'm looking, I can't bring myself to believe it fully. It's hard to see yourself as the chubby girl all your life and then have to adjust to being not-as-chubby. I got to the point where I've asked certain people to stop telling me this, as all I think is "wow...I must have really looked AWFUL before."

    Just keep it up...eventually our minds adjust to the reality of what we are really like. Until then...just remember, you are beautiful.

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  7. you know what's funny about this, its totally true and that's how i let myself gain so much weight. because i used to be so athletic and thin (130lbs @ 5'10) that that's STILL the person i saw in the mirror. even though i got up to 196! when i saw pictures of myself i'd be like, oh that's just a bad angle. haha. i always joke that i have body dysmorphia in the opposite direction of everyone else!

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  8. Susan, it's Jeannette from our old support group. I check on Emily's blog every once in a while and just stumbled on yours.

    After being at my highest weight I have ever weighed in on Saturday, something just switched back on and I am finally committed to changing my ways. And it must have been fate for me to find you again because you look amazing and you are super inspiring! I really miss our daily emails and I am so proud of all the progress you have made!
    Love <3
    Jeannette

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