Usually, when people take pictures of their body at their highest weight, it’s for before-pictures. With a promise that a big transformation lies ahead.
Maybe I should put a warning on this before we start…
This post contains a lot of pictures of myself. More than what I consider an appropriate amount.
But they serve a purpose.
I had a little photo shoot on January 14, 2017 (that’s a while ago by now!*).
So I put on my favorite tights and best sports bra (though it’s a size too small I like the back details).
I set up the camera, turned up the music, got in front of the lens and had fun.
Here’s some back story (we’ll start with the glasses, then the body):
When it was discovered back in 6th grade that my eyesight wasn’t up to par, I hid the letter from my parents (I couldn’t read the blackboard unless I was sitting in front, so that wasn’t a smart move). But I was so scared of being teased. I already struggled with being labeled as the nerdy kid, and wearing glasses would only make that worse (kids can be so cruel). I was lucky my parents let me wear contacts when they found out, and I didn’t have to worry about glasses for years.
Then a few weeks before these pictures were taken, my eye-checking woman (the official title. Probably) said my frequent use of contacts would damage my eyes if I didn’t give them a break.
Thus I had to face my insecurity again.
The saleswoman at the store was very kind and did a good job finding a pair that suited me.
At that time I swore never to let anyone but my boyfriend see me with glasses (and only because that was unavoidable).
I speculate part of the reason I disliked wearing glasses in the beginning was simply because I looked different than usual.
Like my brain would go “Oi, something’s wrong here! This is not the face I’m used to seeing”
And as I slowly got used to it, the glasses didn’t annoy me as much. But I never felt pretty wearing them.
I got the idea it was because I usually only wear glasses in the morning and evening, meaning when my face isn’t looking its best (bags under my eyes, messy and greasy hair, so on). So I planned to put on make-up, do my hair, wear clothes I love and take some pictures to see if I can not only accept, but actually enjoy how I look with glasses!
By now, I’m wearing glasses regularly, regardless of who sees me!
When I faced this fear, it disappeared.
Oh, and I’m also showing my belly here!
I’ve gained quite a few pounds ever since I got sick. The main thing about it that upsets me, is when I outgrow my clothes – especially that awkward phase where it still fits, but it’s starting to fit in an uncomfortable.
It’s good that human aren’t meant to change to fit into clothes, clothes are meant to be the size that fits our bodies (if only I had the money to do a proper make over)…
The more I “show” my body, the less scary I find it, and that’s very empowering to me. I’m reclaiming control over my body from societies diet-fixated clasps. I’m learning that it’s not that big a deal. Sure, there are people who get very judgy about bodies that aren’t super thin – but I’ve learnt that those are not the kind of people I want in my life!
Maybe I’ll lose weight once (if?) my chronic pain subsides – when I’m able to exercise again, or when I no longer use food for comfort from the pain. Maybe I won’t, and that’s okay.
My body is my body. It is what it is. It goes up and down in weight. It expands and it shrinks. It has bony bits and squishy bits.
It has changed, and it will keep changing as time goes on.
But these are not before pictures. Only in the since that they were taken at a time before now.
But they will never be part of a ‘before-after’ picture, where I point at it and say ‘look at that terrible body, thank god it’s not here anymore’.
It’s me and it always will be.
* I started writing this post ages ago, but I finally felt ready to stop pushing it away and hitting publish instead