Friday, May 23, 2014

Mirror, Mirror

The mirror. It's my worst enemy, and my best friend. The other morning as I tried on clothes for work, I found myself both frustrated and happy at the same time. I've lost weight, yes. Bought new pants, yes. Yet, everything still fits so awkwardly. For the past few weeks, there's only been two true instances where I looked in the mirror and I thought to myself, "Wow, you look great. Ya done good, kid." To say this, is pure insanity---and to admit it might even be more insane. 

Two weeks ago, I journeyed to the mall In order to find a dress for my friend's graduation. I went from store to store, settling on the dresses that were on the racks. Doubting, still, that I would be able to fit, and look good in anything at a normal store. I stood there, looking in the mirror after trying on dress after dress with a look of nothing but disappointment on my face. After three stores and 6 dresses, I walked past teenage couples awkwardly holding hands and kiosk vendors, choking back the tears. All the way saying "You're not gonna cry, you're not gonna cry." 

And I didn't. I got teary eyed. Very much so. I got back to my car, and when I was just about to let it out---I realized that nothing was happening. I couldn't cry. Didn't have it in me. So I pulled out of the parking lot, and drove home with the windows down, all the while listening to "One of These Nights" by The Eagles. Now, first question is this: What 26 year old woman has this kind of reaction to a bad shopping experience? Secondly, who chooses their 'emo' song to be "One of These Nights" by the Eagles? Seriously, let's call MTV, because this drama queen needs a show. 

I laugh at this reaction to my lackluster shopping experience (now). However, in the moment, it was pretty heartbreaking. I went again the next day, and after trying on two different dresses at one store, I found one. You're probably wondering why this topic is one that I focus on often---and why I perseverate on weight loss so much. For me, losing weight has been a perpetual journey over the course of my entire life. Even when I weighed 130lbs, I always thought that my short, stubby body could use some major assistance. 

At the end of August, I weighed more than some of my guy friends. Do you know what that feels like? As I stood on the scale after my 26th birthday, I'm not really sure the number shining up at me hit home. It wasn't until I participated in the biometric screening at work, that I really felt the pain of what I'd done to myself. I opened the large white envelope containing my results, and in the section with my weight information, I saw that I was categorized as 'obese'. Obese. At that point, it wasn't even so much about the way that I looked---it was about all of the diseases that I know I'm prone to. 

So I made a decision. After everything I'd been through, and out of all the things (in my life) that I had no control of, I made the decision to change. I made the decision to work on the things I knew I could control. It's been a tough road, and I still have a long way to go. There's been tears, sweat, bruises, and emotions galore. Sometimes, I'm full of pride---like I cannot believe I've come this far. Other times, I resent the journey. Resent the fact that I have to be on this journey---resent the fact that I know I HAVE to go to the gym in order to keep this momentum going. 

Then, when I rationalize the journey, I'm brought back down to earth. I think, "God, what were you working towards when all of the bullshit went down?" The answer is simple: I have no freaking idea. That's awful! If there's anything I've learned lately, we should always have something to work towards. Even if it seems (to you) to be the most trivial of goals. finish my story....

I had the bad shopping experience. That was Thursday. I found the dress Friday. Saturday, I decided to weigh myself. 30.4lbs lost. I'm happy----but I know I've got that ultimate goal in the back of my mind. I'm not going to push it, because all of this has happened in good time---with tons of hard work. I just have to teach myself how to relish in the fact that 30.4lbs of me, is now gone. It's like a weight has been lifted off of me. I'm not even intending to be literal here. More metaphorical than anything else. 

It's funny, I was walking down the hallway at work a few weeks ago, and someone made the comment: "Here comes the incredible ever-shrinking woman." I just laughed and brushed it off.  I am told multiple times a week, "You look great."  Now I just need to learn how to fully believe it.  That's something that only I am going to be able to do.  

Someone once told me that a person's confidence can be their greatest asset, and also, at times their biggest downfall.  Some people are annoyingly overconfident, and some people are annoyingly insecure and not confident with themselves at all.  I lean towards the latter. It's probably the most annoying trait I possess.  However, I think, somewhere, in the midst of all this, I am gaining confidence in ways that I've never seen before.  It might not

be 100% visible, and I might be taking my time to gain it, but it's slowly showing itself.  

Just yesterday, as I was running (on intervals), I thought to myself:

"You go,  you're running at 5.0 speed right now, and even though you're running intervals, and you might only be running short distance at that speed--you're still doing it."

....and I'm still doing it.  Like I said, it might seem redundant, but feel like if I don't share this journey in some way, I wouldn't be able to grow from it as much as I am now. 


The next time I hear a compliment, or I look in the mirror--I might actually take it to heart.  After all, the girl staring back at me doesn't really have to be my worst enemy.  She's been to hell and back---but at the end of the day...she's just like you and me. A little rough around the edges perhaps....but always looking for the next big thing.


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