Today I caught a glimpse of myself in a storefront mirror as I walked down 4th Avenue towards my friend’s house. When I’d dressed earlier that day and applied my lipstick, I’d felt tired but cute. I’d known my dress was a bit tight but I hadn’t given it much thought.
Before I go further, let me give you some insight into my mind.
I know I’m fat. I am aware. And I am often aware of the stares I receive. But what might surprise many is that I am also often aware of the glances I get from men who appreciate something about me…my ass, my smile, my laugh.
And even more importantly, as I’ve gotten older I know when I FEEL good about myself. When I feel cute. When I feel sexy. I know this even when all evidence of our culture to the contrary points to my needing to feel ashamed.
And then I caught that glimpse.
I didn’t beat myself up. I didn’t start in on myself like I would have 10 years ago…hell…5 years ago. Instead I gave myself a once over, admired what I could, and thought, “Girl, you need to do something about this.”
You see…I know when I’m uncomfortable. And lately my knees are telling me that this weight isn’t even a tiny bit okay. If I’ve learned anything about listening to my body it is to listen to my actual damn body when it says something.
So yes…today I caught a glimpse. I didn’t feel as cute as I wanted. My knees felt stiff and creaky. I felt uncomfortable in the dress I was wearing. And I had that momentary feeling of wanting to retreat.
But instead, I laughed with friends, kissed a baby within an inch of his birthday boy life, and received love and care from people dear to me. All of which gives me the energy and fortitude, to start fresh tomorrow on my journey to strong knees, a healthy gut, and a little less snugness in my dress.
I will probably never be anyone’s idea of an athlete…but I remember times past when I took these knees out for a long walk and even a run. And remembering is the first step towards getting there.
Today I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror and I loved myself.