Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Face in the mirror (153.6)

Do you ever look at yourself and think, is that really what I look
like? Can that really be ME?

I've done that a lot. It happened again last night.

When I was really overweight my face was swollen and, well, fat. When
I was pregnant even my nose got fat (it was truly bizarre). I didn't
recognize myself for many years.

Some fat women have lovely faces. Some women on the biggest loser look
great from the neck up. One of my good friends who weighs 300+ pounds
is gorgeous. I've seen a pic of her when she was younger and prob
170-200 (she's about 5'9'') and she doesn't look that much different

I look at old pictures of myself now and can't believe it's what I
looked like. Now I don't resemble the me of the past at all.

We have a mirror in our bedroom on the bathroom door that faces my
side of the bed. I can't have the door open when I'm in bed (it's an
OCD thing) and the mirror often reflects me while I'm sitting in bed.
Yes, I will get up and reposition the door so it's closed but I'm not
looking at myself.

Last night after I took off my makeup and put my hair in a pony tail,
I caught a glimpse and thought, I look soooo much like my mom. Not my
mom now. But my mom in her 20s or 30s. And I look a lot like my aunt,
her sister, who is 7 years older than me.

When I got thin in 2007-08, family compared me to my aunt a lot. She's
the only naturally thin person in our family. She got it from my
grandpa, who was a bean pole.

I don't know where all this is going other than I felt weird, and
often feel weird, in my own skin. There's a point when I get to a
certain weight that my face maybe is thinner than I'm used to seeing.
That I've only really had for a couple years of my adult life.

I'm back at that point now.

I don't know what I expect to see. I've lived with myself for 42
years. You'd think this wouldn't be an issue! It's just odd to see so
much of other people in my face in the mirror.

I also think I have a conception in my mind of how I look that doesn't
always match reality. Pictures of me--the good ones--are more
reliable. Then the bad ones throw me again. Is that what I really look

I wonder what it will be like in 20-30 years (I'm being optimistic--I
WILL look exactly the same in my 50s as I do now!) when I'm covered in

I'm starting to do the same thing with my hands. When did my hands
turn into my grandmother's?

So that's the totally random mind deposit for the day.
I have been basically sick or feeling poorly since last Wednesday. I
haven't run in almost 2 weeks. I hate this cold weather. I'm busier
than is normal (work, kids' variety show rehearsals during the week
and on weekends, and it's not going to let up for a while). And I
generally feel life spinning wildly around me.

What this does is cause me to shut down when I'm home at night. I've
watched all of Downton Abbey in the past few weeks (love!!). I've
read a bit of fluffy fiction. I don't want to do anything of
consequence in my down time. I don't have it in me.

I've kept up on laundry and keeping the house clean, so I'm not being
a slug or anything. I just want to carve out more for myself. More
running, reading OA lit and working on my 30 questions, more

I hope for spring's extra sunshine and renewal of spirit.

But I'm ok. I'm really very ok. Food is abstinent. That's a lot to be
hopeful and happy about.


Vickie said...



Mirror exercises from Ellen that ran earlier in the month. Secpveral people talked about looking in the mirror and seeing relatives in their faces.

When I have all my fat on, I look very much like one of my day's obese sisters, shockingly so. With my fat off, I look nothing like her.

It takes a full year+, in my opinion, for new body to settle after get to final weight. And then it takes longer than that to get used to seeing all of it.

I still have to take things in stages:
Wear the sweaters
have people see me in sweaters
See myself in sweaters in the mirror
Take pictures in sweaters

That can be a three year process of adjustment (bulky sweaters).

jen said...

Mostly I like seeing resemblances, though wearing a bathing suit and thinking "There's Aunt X" was not fun. Even then, I think it's natural that I would look like her.

I got very disoriented at goal weight. I look in the mirror a lot now, not to judge or pick, but to see how I look and accept myself as I am now and to watch how I am changing so I don't get caught by surprise.

Jill said...

When I got to my lowest weight a couple of years ago, I remember finally recognizing myself in the mirror again. It's this current fat girl that I don't recognize. In fact, the woman I see in the mirror looks very much like my beloved sister who is also obese. It scares me to think how much my face resembles hers.

Laura N said...

I'm glad you all identify with this. I'll check out Ellen's links--thank you.

Luke was looking through his baby pics in a scrapbook a year or so ago. He said of one pic of me holding him in the hospital bed--"there's aunt Crystal." (my sister) She's 100+ pounds overweight and carries a lot in her face. I'd forgotten how much I look like her when I'm very heavy. I look nothing like her now.

Lacy Cash said...

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