Hello Old Friend: Getting To Know My Reflection

1972253_10202236057197119_404303386_n In my teen years I can remember being obsessed with mirrors always wanting to make sure my hair was high enough and poofy enough, and that I looked cute for all the cute boys, hey it was the 80’s don’t judge. But somewhere between the teen years and my early adult years I started to avoid looking into the mirrors and it was at that time that I had my first child and had didn’t loose the excess baby weight. Avoiding mirrors became like second nature to me whether we were out shopping and there was a reflection in the window I would divert my eyes away, or passing the bathroom mirror I would make sure to keep my eyes aimed forward or up avoiding having to look below the neck area. It sounds silly I know but I became a master at avoiding, to the point that eventually years and years down the road you accidentally take a glance in the mirror and the horror and shock that consumes your heart is almost to much to bear.

“Where did that fat girl from? I do not know whom this person is” that became a sad reality for the last twenty years. It was not that I did not know that I was getting fatter and bigger as the years went on, but I figured if I made up for my looks with a great personality it would be ok. The old hiding behind a sunny disposition trick, and it worked for years. But eventually you have to face that reflection staring back at you from the mirror, and the one thing I realized is that it was like meeting a stranger. The person looking back it me, was a tired, depressed, embarrassed and ashamed women, whom had spent the last twenty years in a abusive marriage. Someone I wanted to reach into the mirror and wrap my arms around and just tell her it would be ok. That stranger was me.

So what do you do when you see yourself in the mirror and you simply do not recognize yourself? You start to really get to know yourself all over again. Over the last two months I have really forced myself to not be mad, embarrassed or ashamed at that reflection looking back at me in  the mirror. Because bottom line is the reality is here, and now we have to deal with where do we go from here so that I can look in the mirror and be happy at the reflection staring back me. So now when I go in to use the bathroom and get ready I am spending a lot more time in there. Taking some pride in my appearance is all new to me, my friend jokes that I will not even go the gym without my hair and make up done. She is right and you know why, because it makes me feel better about myself and that is all that matters in the end.

Now when I look back at my reflections I see the following, a short woman who has a very large stomach, large and wide hips and bad teeth. But you know what else I see in the mirror a women who has gorgeous eyes, pretty hair, who with her hair and make up done is starting to look “HOT” you heard me. So what I still have that fat stomach and wide hips, those are slowly starting to disappear and what I see in the mirror is a happier me. Don’t get me wrong I still have bad days when I look at myself and just go into “Put Down” mode. But I really try so hard to stop myself, because we are own worst critics and in the end what good is putting yourself down going to do to your already fragile self esteem. When passing by mirrors now you will see that I stop and checkout my reflection and I don’t avoid it. This is very hard to do because my natural habit for over twenty years has been to pass by a mirror or window and look away, but now I force myself to look into that mirror and be proud of the reflection staring back at me.

That reflection that stares back at me, I can honestly tell you today I just love her to pieces. Because I see the struggles daily that the reflection deals with, but the fact that for the first time in her life she does not let anyone keep her down and she gets up every morning and keeps going and has forced me to get to love my reflection a little bit more each day. The saddest part is for the first time in forty-two years I can tell you I am one  hell of person, I am proud of what I am becoming, and that I love myself and my body and I am going to work hard to live a healthy life for me and my girls. If you are also a person who avoids mirrors and windows, as hard as it is force yourself to really look into that mirror and don’t be afraid  of the reflection staring back at you. Remember if you don’t like what you see, you can always change things and it won’t be easy but there is a wealth of support out there especially from online social media. There are days that if I didn’t have my Facebook and Twitter friends, or my support group friends, I am not sure how I would get through the day. Reach out and get help and support if you need it, and if you want feel free to contact me and I would be happy to see if I can help you in any way.

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About Angie

Single Mom of two girls on a journey to get healthy by losing weight and learning to love herself again!

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