Looking in the Mirror
If you have been reading my posts on health, you will remember the post about my anorexia. For most of my life, I have had problems with my body image. Over the last several years, as I gained a few pounds and gotten older, I looked less and less at myself in the mirror. I had a hard time accepting myself and my body’s appearance. I did not like what I saw, so I quit looking. Now, don’t get me wrong–I looked in the mirror to make sure I was dressed appropriately and to put on makeup and to fix my hair–but I didn’t LOOK in the mirror at myself.
As I was getting ready to shower the other morning, I saw myself in the mirror. I actually looked at myself. This time I did not see the fat, the stretch marks, the wrinkles, or the gray hair. Looking back at me was a forty-six year old woman who looks really good for her age and everything else she has been through. (I do not say that out of conceit.)
I had always seen just those imperfections, never my whole self.
I earned all these things through what I have been through in my life. The extra weight is a reminder that while I cared for my dying grandfather, I would fix meals and eat with him, then go home and eat a second dinner with my family. Two dinners every day with an occasional milkshake thrown in will put some weight on anyone. The stretch marks are a reminder that I carried and birthed three beautiful, wonderful children. When I was pregnant with my oldest child, I had complications and was on bed rest. Then I proceeded to retain fluid. The wrinkles are a reminder that I work outdoors on a farm side-by-side with my husband. The gray hair is–well, I don’t know what that is all about! Some say it is from stress. Some say it is a sign of wisdom. All I have to ask is, “Why?”
I eat rather healthy and take care of myself, mostly. Sure, I would like to lose a few pounds and I might color my hair sometime, but this is me. I am forty-six years old and I have accomplished and struggled through so much. Finally, I can accept my physical self.