Can you spot the "fat girl" in these photographs?
You know what, I don't see her either. As critical as I can be about myself, I don't see any "fat" women when I look at these photographs. Instead, I see a group of young, pretty women, enjoying a Friday night out in the middle of the summer.
One of the side-effects that no one tells you about when you set out to lose over a third of your body weight is the following: Once the weight is gone, you will have no idea what you look like anymore. Everyone else gets to see the transformation, but all you see are glimpses through mirrors and snapshots taken from a wild Friday night.
Which often results in me feeling like the biggest girl in the room. I was at a bar last weekend (shocker, I know ;) and I started talking to this guy. At one point in the conversation, he referred to me as a "cute blond." I literally laughed in his face. Those adjectives couldn't possibly describe me. But then he pointed across the bar to a thin, blond girl, and said, "Yeah, you and her. You're the cute blonds at the bar."
His words do not match up to my self image of myself. Half of the time I feel like the hulk, with huge shoulders, huge boobs, huge thighs and crazy, messy hair, and the other half of the time I feel glamorous like Marilyn Monroe, especially when I wear my little black dress, tan heels, and huge sunglasses. Clearly, my self image is somewhat distorted.
A friend from Syracuse came to visit me this past weekend, and when I stepped out of my car, it took him a moment to recognize me. He kept going on about how "great" I looked, but all I could think about was the fact that he didn't recognize me. It's surreal losing so much weight that you look like a different person.
Like loose skin and stretch marks, hopefully in time, my self image will firm up and become more accurate. In the meantime, I'm going to try to keep these photographs in my head and remember that I am no longer the fat girl in the room.