Friday, April 06, 2007

mirror

I look in the mirror and I see chipmunk cheeks and a moon face, the redness that comes with high blood pressure and having to work hard to get a really deep breath.

I look again and I see pretty eyes and delineated cheekbones with hollows beneath, a surprisingly smooth complexion in the palest tan, red lips and very white teeth.

I open the closet door and imagine that my gigantic self can't possibly fit in that little black sheath and what can I wear to auction tonight that will not make me look as if I weigh 800 pounds.

I slip on the black sheath and it is too big. I pull on a sweater that shouldn't fit and it does. I put on my boots and they fit perfectly.

This is insane. I have an appointment with an eating disorders therapist on Tuesday. It's been 10 years since I've been to a counselor for this. I hope in that time they've perfected a method of simply cutting out the part of my brain where this malignancy resides.

19 Comments:

Blogger honib1 said...

Believe in the thinner woman you see.. thats you saying hello.. You will get there.. and much luck with the therapy .. it will help put things in perspective...

April 06, 2007 1:40 PM  
Blogger Big Ass Belle said...

that's the crazy thing, though. the woman i see with cheekbones, collarbones, a waist . . . that's the one i am. that moon faced woman is who i was 100 pounds ago. it's the insanity of still seeing her in the mirror and still trying on clothes that are hanging off of me because my head sees them as fitting.

April 06, 2007 1:44 PM  
Anonymous Tater said...

You are a beautiful woman, possesed of a kind heart and a brilliant soul. All of us that read you know who you are, see yourself reflected from our eyes.

April 06, 2007 2:21 PM  
Anonymous Tater said...

that should have read "possessed". Damn brain!

April 06, 2007 2:23 PM  
Blogger angelfish24 said...

Here's to hoping your brain and your perspective of yourself and how you really are now will get in sync. Hope therapy will help. I always hear of people losing a lot of wt but seeing themselves as still heavy. It must be a hard thing to get around, even with update pictures of yourself, self help talk tapes and the like.
Hope you have a good week!

April 06, 2007 2:30 PM  
Blogger Helen the Felon said...

Amen, Belle. I lost my weight (for the second and hopefully last time) almost 10 years ago, but I still see a little porkchop in the mirror most days.

I wish you could see the person that everyone around you clearly sees. I wish all of us former fat girls could see that. If lobotomy really is the answer, sign my not-so-big ass up.

April 06, 2007 2:32 PM  
Blogger Red7Eric said...

Belle, this is the story of my life, and not just about weight. We are our own worst critics, and loving thyself is a tall order.

By all means, talk to a counselor. But don't rule out shopping as a simultaneous form of therapy -- sounds like someone needs to buy a sexy new outfit!! Congrats, hon; you're an inspiration.

April 06, 2007 2:41 PM  
Blogger Lily T said...

Yay! You are doing so well!

Isn't it weird when that happens. When how you think you look doesn't match what how you really look.

April 06, 2007 3:18 PM  
Blogger David said...

Welcome to the wonderful world of body dysmorphia. I look in the mirror and alternately see either a skinny guy who really needs to get serious at the gym, or a solidly middle-aged guy whose prime is already fading and beginning to sag.

April 06, 2007 4:02 PM  
Blogger evilganome said...

My sympathies. No matter what, I am almost never happy with what I see. If it is not my weight, it's the inroads of age. It never ends. I just try to hang onto the good days when I feel good about things and feel like trying to take care of myself is worth it.

April 06, 2007 5:19 PM  
Blogger more cowbell said...

Good for you with the sheath & sweater, bet you looked fanfuckingtabulous.

I had lost 65lbs, went from 16-18 down to a 6-8 with the Divorce Diet. (I was even a 4 for month, but damn was that hard to maintain, and I looked ill.) Kept it off for about 10 years. Since I've been back in the states the last 3 years, well, Baby's definitely Got Back again, and not in a good way.

Anyway, it took a long time for the brain to catch up to my new bod when I lost the weight. It's weird! I knew logically that I could wear a 6, but I just could not see it. Like I wasn't a "real" 6. Like every clothing manufacturer suddenly had "weird sizing" or something.

What's surprising me now is that I'm kind of doing the dysmorphia thing the other way ... like my brain can't quite see that it's more than just "putting on a few pounds" since moving to Seattle, that I actually have gotten re-fat. Shit. But my brain can't really see it yet ... it's getting there though. Not a good thing this time around.

Anyway, it's very weird, the mirror image thing. Very hard to explain to folks who haven't had that experience.

I'm glad your clothes are confirming the facts -- your brain will catch up. Congrats. It ain't easy.

April 06, 2007 7:57 PM  
Blogger Ms. Place said...

Packing for China, all my clothes are either too big or too small. Symptoms of a yo-yo dieter.

I'm with you all the way and know where you're coming from.

April 07, 2007 8:31 AM  
Blogger Willym said...

lynette I'm not going to go into that beautiful inside stuff - you and the rest of us all know that. Here's a little story my late friend Ryan use to tell me about the great Dame Edith Evans:

http://willyorwonthe.blogspot.com/2007/02/you-are-beeauutiful.html

Now I'm not comparing you physically to Dame Edith but from what you've said about this little episode between you and your mirror and what I've read, I figure it only took two "You are beauuutifuls" and you were there!!!

April 07, 2007 9:50 AM  
Blogger Debra said...

I have the reverse anorexia where it is difficult for me to see how large I am. I'm constantly having the opposite reaction to you, Lynette. I pick something out of the closet that looks way too big and it is the kind of body hugging that I forswore after I turned 30. *sigh* It's a frustrating experience not to see, accept and like yourself as you are. I hope your therapist and you have a Big Click together. Happy Easter!

April 07, 2007 10:31 AM  
Blogger LSL said...

I always sincerely, sincerely appreciate reading your posts about the weight struggle. Thanks, Lynette.

April 07, 2007 8:33 PM  
Anonymous Judi Finneran said...

Been there, done that...Once when I was very thin, I would try on the pants of another girl in my office every morning. I would look at her and could not imagine I could be her size. We would go into the restroom and would put on her pants. Every time they fit, I was sure it was some kind of trick...Time, takes time.

Cheers,

Judi

April 08, 2007 11:40 PM  
Blogger lisalgreer said...

Hi, Belle,
It's low beta endorphins, etc. that cause us to feel this way about ourselves. I did all the counseling in the world, and it did not even a tenth of what eating right for recovery from food addiction has done.

If you get your food right at a therapeutic dose of protein etc (as an addict, we need that), your brain chemistry will even out and you will feel great about how you look. It is amazing but true. It's already happening to me, and I'm still too heavy... just changing or 'doing the food' will do it...

April 10, 2007 1:59 AM  
Blogger Melting Mama said...

Been there, done that, bought the tee-shirt, a coupla times. ::sigh::

April 13, 2007 6:39 AM  
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