So, it seems that when you make a commitment to start acknowledging your weight, you become aware of so many things that you didn’t previously allow yourself to pay attention to. Like, what you look like naked.
Every fat dimple, every half-started roll, every plain of soft flab, and each and every damn stretch mark – they all glare at you accusingly.
I must admit, I’ve gotten really good at not looking at my body.
I’ve been married for 8 years, it’s not like my husband and I don’t have sex or take showers together – because we do. It’s not like no one sees my naked body but me, right? And, don’t get me wrong, I’m NOT saying that I haven’t been self-conscious during all those moments of intimacy either.
Trust me, I’m fully aware that if I straighten my back just so that the curve of my waist will be smoother and thus my side roll less obvious to my husbands touch. I’ve figured out that if I keep my mouth closed when my head is back in ecstasy my double chin isn’t so double-y (mirror). I suck in my stomach when I’m getting undressed before a shower and I always wait until my husband has his glasses off before I take off my underwear.
I suppose all these little tricks add up and before long, I even tricked myself… I learned how to hide my fatness behind some fairly flimsy illusions and because the truth is so much harder to stomach – I fell for my own lies.
Now, when I’m really seeing – not looking, seeing – my body, I find that my level of self-consciousness has sky-rocketed.
I hide a lot behind clothing. I dress professionally and appropriately for my weight and age (30) and these habits keep me fairly comfortably in my daily environment. I am conscientious and particular about what I wear but I also don’t tend to obsess about it either so long as I have items that I like and feel good in. The way that I dress de-emphasizes the fact that I’m quite as overweight as I am because the styles I choose are flattering (I watch What Not To Wear and take good mental notes).
So, when stripped bare (emotionally and physically) I find it hard to not look away. I’m making a concerted effort to avoid this – to look – to embrace – and use what I see as motivation to make changes and keep them up.
I don’t like that, all of the sudden, I have a little mental freak out when my husband walks in on me while I’m changing my blouse or putting on pants or – heaven forbid! – getting out of the shower. I demand privacy and shrink from his gaze. It’s not like he hasn’t seen me before but now… now it’s like I’m afraid he’ll start seeing my body like I’m beginning to see my body.
I suppose that this phase will pass – the more I become familiar with my body the more likely I’ll be able to notice changes and that will help keep me motivated. I don’t, however, what to become so acclimated that I begin to fall into the same comfort zone I’ve been in – where I once again don’t really “see” my body anymore.
It’s a delicate balance – this loosing weight thing – between sanity and a complete breakdown.