I've had a few conversations over the past few years where people say, "you don't see what size you actually are." I've confidently disagreed in the past. "I know I'm not fat, but I know that I can be smaller." And that was true.
Recently though, I've started to realize that I'm smaller than I think I am. I've just had several people refer to me as "small" or "small framed" lately. (This second term really struck me - every Former Fattie once used a "large frame" as an explanation for their size.) I was really hit with it in the dressing room of the Gap this past weekend. I wanted a cute fitted-looking button down. I picked up the Small and prayed it would fit. It was too big. In the meantime I was trying on jeans that were a size 30. Not only did they fit I probably have a little extra room (at least in the waist.) What struck me was not how far I've come - from an XL to below a S and from a 36 to below a 30 - but just how small those new sizes actually are. As in...I'm smaller than a Small? How the heck small am I? Is it going to be an issue finding clothes that are small enough? WHO AM I?
This realization leaves me with a few thoughts:
- For the first time ever, I understand what people mean when they talk about distorted body image. I still think of myself as juuuust a little on the big side, what actually I'm smaller-than-small.
- Was it ever my intention to be small? I know Katy's dream is to be Olsen-esque but its not mine. It can be argued that Efron-esque isn't exactly huge but...well I guess that leads me to my next point...
- I'm not Efron-esque. Don't hit me for ending this post like this, but seriously, I could still be so much more toned. I think lithe, toned guys are so attractive, but that is just not what I am right now. I do think I'm well on my way. And a I feel a billion times better about myself than I did even four months ago, let alone two years. I'm starting to lean more towards wanting to be Lautner-esque I think. My primary goal right now though is to rid myself of the remaining fat. So if I end up a little too small for a bit, so be it. (Interestingly, Taylor Lautner is about 10 pounds heavier than I am and my height. So in theory I should only have to put on ten pounds of muscle...but he started out 20 pounds lighter than I am. So I think he may have 30 pounds of muscle on me. At the very least, its more than 10.)
The point of this post was supposed to be that I have a distorted view of myself in the mirror, but I actually think the truth is more that I'm adjusting to the new reality. Confession: whenever I've passed the long mirror at the bottom of my staircase in the past few weeks, I've been pleasantly surprised at what I've seen. So maybe I can actually see it...I just keep forgetting.
Either way, the Former Fatties has changed my life.