A few years ago I went out to lunch with my friend. She is about ten years younger than me, tall, fit and beautiful. We were walking down the street and she was telling me a story and not paying attention to her surroundings. I on the other hand was very aware of a man walking towards us, more than half her age that was looking her up and down. His head literally turned to look at her as he walked by.
I wasn't jealous of my friend; I was just kinda sad for myself. No one (besides my husband) had looked at me like that in years. Not that I like that kind of attention (this from the girl who's blog is title "I'm My Favorite") but I felt sad that that part of my life was over.
I will get back to this story in a minute. Now on to a conversation that happened today.
At work I was wearing a colorful blue dress. I just recently started wearing dresses again since losing weight. My co-workers are still getting use to seeing me in them and today one of my co-workers did a double take and told me I looked nice. Later in the day she and I were in another staff persons office figure out something and as I walked out of her office she told me that she had just looked at some photos from one of our work events three years ago. She told me it was amazing how differently I looked.
I knew what photos she was talking about. I hadn't looked at them in years, but I remembered not liking them when I saw them after the event. That's one of my things about self-image. Even at my heaviest I didn't see myself as I really was. I thought I was thinner and so it was always a shock to see photos of how I really looked.
When I got home tonight I found the photos she was talking about. Here they are.
Another self-image thing for me is now that I've lost 40 pounds sometimes I don't see it. Literally don't see it. I look at my body and I don't think it's different. Or not different enough. But then I'll look at a recent photo or someone will make a comment and it helps me see how I really look right now.
It's hard to explain but it is something that I'm having to deal with emotionally and honestly, I'm not sure how well I'm dealing with it. I can tell the way that Jim looks at me that HE can see the difference and I get shy. I get shy around this man that I've been with since 1994. It's weird, I don't know how to process it. I don't know how to deal with it and get past it.
Now back to the beginning of my story. Remember when I said I was sad because the part of my life where men looked at me as I walked past them was over. Well, I've discovered that's not the case. Since I've lost weight I get a whole heck of a lot more doors held open for me. I went to Chipotle today and when I was walking out a guy was walking in, he looked at me, and backed back out of the restaurant to hold the door open for me.
That never happened when I was heavier and I've been struggling with the reason why and I think the honest answer is that I'm thinner. Are people nicer to thinner people? From some stories I've read on other blogs I'm starting to believe that's the case.
But, you know what else it could be? I have more confidence, I am holding my head high, making more eye contact.
If you look closely in my eyes in the photos above you can see it. My spark is missing. My self image issues are right there on my face.
Remember that photo I posted Friday of the brown Goodwill dress? I had so many people compliment on that photo. Look at my face. The spark is there. It's beaming off the page.
And here's a photo I took tonight before my Zumba class tonight. I took this photo tonight because I wanted to see that spark again after looking at those old photos above.
P.S. - the scale has been up all week. I ended the week tonight with 17 extra points. I will be disappointed if I have a gain tomorrow but it's looking like that's what's going to happen and I'm trying to prepare myself for it. If so I'll take a close look at my tracking for the week and see where I can make improvements. I will drink more water and less diet doctor pepper. I will be diligent with my measuring.