I’ve been looking around for something to use for my “before” picture, and boy did I find it. Last spring we were in Hawaii and my daughter took a picture of me from the beach, while I was bouncing around in the beautiful turquoise water. In the photo, I am a little speck and didn’t think much of it. But we happen to have a very powerful camera and when I cropped myself and zoomed in, I was… stunned.
You know how anorexics who weigh 85 lbs look in the mirror and see themselves as fat? I feel like I’ve had an opposite sort of distorted body image; I looked in the mirror and thought, “That’s not so bad.” I bought bigger and bigger clothes and as long as they were baggy and I was sort of swimming around in them, I felt comfortable because they were loose. I really had NO CONCEPT of how fat I had gotten.
I’m actually dying to show these two photos side by side: one of me, a week or so before giving birth. My face is pretty slender, my arms and legs are skinny but I have this huge bowling-ball belly. Then the one of me in the water in Hawaii. SAME EXACT WEIGHT, except in the second one, those extra pounds are in my face, my chin(s), my hamhock arms, and my torso. Aghhh!
It is really interesting to me, how I managed to get so overweight and didn’t really know it. On one level. Of course on another level I totally knew it and it made me miserable. But I tried to say “I don’t care.” Like this interesting post I read today.
Anyway, for now I am just using the Before pic as a personal reminder. When I look at it, Fleetwood Mac’s “Never Going Back Again” pops into my head, very Pavlovian like. No, no, no, no…
March 19, 2009 at 11:20 pm
yah i have a “before” picture too. at the top of my weight. it’s like a cautionary image. oh boy. it’s awful.
March 20, 2009 at 12:43 am
I know EXACTLY what you are talking about. I didn’t pay much attention to the fact that I was gaining so much weight over the years until one day a little more then 1 year ago I realized that I needed to do something about my weight. It had gotten SO out of hand. Another reason why I didn’t realize so much that I had gained so much weight was because I always wore elastic pants. So as I gained weight the waist of the pants stretched and I didn’t even notice it at all. Now a days I am very different, but it’s taken some really hard work to get to where I’m at.
I’m glad for you that you found a BEFORE picture of yourself. That is gonna be some really good motivation for you so that you can see yourself as you progress through your own weight loss jounrey. It’s not easy emotionally to see that BEFORE picture, but it is really worth it to have one so that you can keep yourself motivated. You’re doing an awesome job with your weight loss too by the way! Keep going and you’ll get to your goal!
March 20, 2009 at 1:08 am
Andrea – YES! The dreaded elastic pants! Which I finally broke the waistband on! (THAT is when you know you’re really far gone, when you break the elastic on your extra-large stretchy pants…)
March 20, 2009 at 6:15 am
Thanks for the comment on my blog! I look forward to reading yours every day and following along on your journey 😉
March 20, 2009 at 12:51 pm
It is amazing how slowly that weight can sneak up on us and we can be in such denial about it. That’s what happened to me as well. Started buying bigger clothes and then for some reason I had a wake up call. maybe it was because I was actually looking for women maternity shirts to wear, and I am a guy. It shows you how your thinking and perspective can be out of whack as well. Continued success on your journey. I know that this time it will be different for you. 🙂
March 20, 2009 at 1:33 pm
i completely understand your reverse body image issue– i did the same thing. then i, too, saw some pictrues of myself and was astounded at what i saw. motivated me even more to take care of my body and my health and get rid of the extra weight.
March 20, 2009 at 7:08 pm
I TOTALLY understand what you’re talking about in this post—I have the same sort of special vision. It’s like even in a mirror I don’t see what I *really* look like . . . it takes a photograph to bring me back to reality about the state of my appearance and weight.
As you know, I am getting my official “Before” photos for my fitness challenge taken tomorrow . . . in a weird way, I’m looking forward to it!
March 23, 2009 at 4:29 am
Hello – I’ve just stumbled across this site and I always love getting comments too (although I don’t get many). I will be bookmarking your blog for inspiration / motivation – I hope you can come visit my site too 🙂