Thursday, December 20, 2012
I have a vivid memory from when I was about 10. My mom and my (deaf) aunt were complaining about their bodies. I'm not sure if I was just trying to get into the conversation, express empathy, or what, but in an "I feel you, sister" moment, I looked at my aunt, grabbed my calf and shook it at her like, "Oh yeah? What about THAT?" My calf wasn't fat, but I thought it was. Because a calf is a rather floppy muscle when not in use, my kid brain thought it was flabby.
I know now that I wasn't fat then. However, I was always self-conscious about my belly. I thought it should have been flat and it was (to me, anyway) too rotund. Probably also didn't help that people tried to make me feel better about it by saying it was just "baby fat."
Even today, I struggle with a skewed vision of my body. When I got down to a size 8, and I felt more confident in my clothes, I obsessed about my perceived flaws. See this picture? I look great, right?
You know what I see? Fat arms. I have ginormous triceps from my strength training, but because my arms don't look like Madonna's they look fat to me. And my arms aren't fat. I KNOW this.
Crazy as it sounds, there's a difference between knowing something and believing it.
I'm aware of this disconnect between my perception and reality, but not exactly sure what to do about it. Maybe blogging about it will help...