To begin. It's never easy to begin to change your life, to change part of what and who you feel you are. I have good intentions, I have good moments and days and weeks, and then I just stop. I don't get mad at myself for overeating one day or missing a workout, it just happens that I miss one workout, two workouts, and then it's a week between workouts and I just fall out of routine. Then a month passes and I'm all, "What am I doing?" and I hop back into something or another and try to keep on changing.
I overeat, I don't work out, and I have gained 45 lbs. in the last five years. 45 LBS! How did I let this happen? I don't recognize the person I see in the mirror anymore. My face is pretty much the same, but then I look at the stomach and arms and legs and think, "When did this happen to me?" When did the healthy person I knew become this?
We all have pictures in our head of what we look like. When I see myself in my head I see the person I was at 21. Not skinny but definitely not fat. I thought I was fat, but what did I know? My stomach is pretty flat. When I lay down on the floor on my back it concaves instead of becoming merely flat like it does now. I can do what I want whenever I want to do it. there is definition in my stomach and my legs, while not toned, definitely look fine in some shorts. This is the person I see. Basically the same person I see in my senior pictures four years earlier. This is the person I believe I am.
Now, the mirror tells me a different story. I have round humps that, if my pants ride too low, stick out over my sides. Pants that I had taken in when I was 21 and in that gym class now have been let out again and are stretched to the limit. I can feel the material on the thighs pull against my legs when I sit down. My face is rounder, softer. My arms jiggle, my boobs don't fit in my bras anymore - the bras I spent too much money for at Victoria's Secret and so I refuse to go buy more, but they don't fit the same anymore.
Most of what has changed happens when I see the mirror or when I try on new clothes. I don't like it. I really don't like what I see, what I feel and how I feel about myself because of some pounds of flesh that I put on myself in the first place.
When I'm with friends and in a crowd of people I'm talking and laughing and I forget that I'm overweight, forget that I'm uncomfortable with myself and I shine. People don't see my fat, they see my spirit and they warm to it. Then I remember and I shut down. I remember that I'm a large girl. A girl who, as an acquaintance once said to George, "Yeah, Jessica's just kind of fat." I thought of a great comeback later. I could tell him, "Well, you're an idiot and you'll always be an idiot. At least I can change if I'm fat or not."
That's the point, I can change, I can be healthier and make me proud of myself. I don't need to be the larger girl, I can be the girl I see in the mirror that makes me smile at myself. I can see a sign that says "Reduction Ahead" and follow it.