After nearly five months of working out, I am finally beginning to see some changes in my body. I am unofficially down 15 pounds and, glory of all glories, I am down a jean size. I went to the mall to do a little shopping and actually didn't hate trying clothes on for a change. I would even go so far as to say that I kinda liked what I saw in the mirror.
I seem to have crossed some sort of line. Over it, I am fat and ugly and below it, I am skinny and beautiful. It is ridiculous and without basis in any sort of rationale, but there it is.
I am still a long way from my goal. I have a good 25 pounds to go before I hit the weight I was when I met Neil six years ago. While my body has changed, in no small part thanks to having a child, there is no reason to think that I can not be that weight again. It is not even the lightest I've ever been. I was 15 pounds lighter still when I was in college, but I think 25 pounds is a realistic and attainable goal. If once I reach it, I find that I can go further and hit that nirvana weight, then I will go for it, but I will be more than satisfied with the higher number.
Not uniquely, I think, I have a very skewed view of myself. When I am at home, I face my reflection in the mirror and I am not entirely displeased. I'm far from perfect, but I think things generally look okay. But then I will see photographs, or catch my reflection in an unfamiliar mirror or window, and I will see the real me. The one the rest of the world sees. The one that still has too much junk in the trunk, the one who's stomach still sticks out further than I care to think, the one who probably shouldn't be wearing a tank top for all of the meat hanging on those upper arms, and, oh, the extra chins.
How is the vision I see in my mirrors at home so much different from this stranger?
Is the vision of the pretty me the delusion, am I just protecting my eggshell fragile ego from the harsh reality? Or is it the reflection of the ugly me?
Does it even matter?