Old photos to inspire new views

PostSecret.com had two very poignant cards up for this Sunday that I wanted to just point out and share today.

The first shows a young athlete who says sharing the photos taken of them was out because they felt “Too Fat”.

Young athlete "I never gave anyone these cause I thought I was FAT"

How many pictures do I have that I hid away for the very same reason?

I’d be interested to hear how they feel now and, from the feeling I get from this postcard’s tone, I imagine it would be a more wistful feeling of “WHY?!? did I think that???”  The same sort of feeling I just had over this weekend when I happened to see a very old (10 years or so) video of myself dancing and had to cluck over that beautiful (and far-thinner-than-me-now) girl who, at that moment in dancing, had been dieting and hating herself as a Fattie…while being vastly smaller than this currently non-dieting version of April D!

Which leads nicely into this other postcard:

This is the first time in my life that I felt truly beautiful. And I'm 341 pounds.

Indeed!  Like this postcard writer, I am the largest woman that I’ve ever been.  I AM the size at which I once used to childishly scoff and sneeringly warn my mother or friends that if I ever GOT this large I was to be shot or “put out of my misery” or needless other hateful things for which I still feel cringes of embarrassing guilt even now (the sorts of things that Google is ever-so-helpfully willing to let you search for).

Yet, having gotten “here”, I don’t feel that I should be shamed or punished for the shape or size of my body.  Instead, most days, I DO feel beautiful too.  Perhaps that is in large part a lucky benefit of being partnered, an aspect of my life I am loath to take for granted.

Still, in a world where that first young person was hating themselves for their perceived fatness, the very idea that women like the second (and myself) can and DO feel beautiful is no small miracle.  And I will take it for the very uplifting thought that it is.

Love knows no bounds, be it size, shape or what-have-you.  Self-love, the ability to see beauty in one’s own body, should be equally unbounded!

So, dig out those old photos I say.  I will do the same.  Make peace with the person you were, and the person you are.  Find the beauty in the self you have now.

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5 thoughts on “Old photos to inspire new views

  1. This post has really struck a chord with me for some reason. Maybe it’s the gloomy weather, maybe it’s some left-over emotional baggage, but I got a little teary there for a second. I’m the largest woman I’ve ever been and when I look back at old photos from highschool or before I think “I wasn’t fat! What was I thinking? Why did I get teased?” Reconciling with who I was, physically, has been more difficult than reconciling with who I was mentally/emotionally.

    • JeninCandada I know that feeling exactly!! I often just feel baffled: “WHY did I feel so huge and lumbering??!?” I guess hindsight is 20/20? But perhaps that feeling of being over-large was also a manifestation of my own awkwardness in growing up; a difficult time for anyone! It irks me that the two feelings are so inextricably intertwined.

  2. Amen! Preach sistah!

    I weighed myself today since it had been over a year or so since I had done so.

    I am now in “the big leagues” as my mother calls it- over 300. I really thought I was still at 275 since everything fits the same. Who knows?

    Feelings of “how did I get this way” start to creep up, then I realize that I am still the mad tough B*tch who I was before I stepped on the scale.

    • DivaJean: Exactly! It is so worth remembering that no matter the number; we’re just the same AMAZING person as we were BEFORE stepping on the scale. One good reason not to have a scale (IMHO): it prevents that flicker of self-doubt from even trying to pry its fingers into my mind!

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