Do you have those places on your body that when you hit a certain weight is your tell? Like, OMGosh! I have a fat roll behind my knee now or something like that? That one thing you HATE when it appears? For me it is my chin. I’m paranoid about the double and triple chin. No matter how heavy I got, I always kept track of my chin, watching with despair as my neck disappeared and seemed to join with my chest in that whole neck-chin-wattle thing that leaves one’s neck undefined and collars or scarves homeless and awkward… I did not want that.
I was so pleased that as I lost weight my neck and chin seemed pretty responsive and shed the weight pretty quick, and then I stopped paying attention and focused elsewhere. All along, however, as I work through my body project I’ve assumed that I was very much still sporting my double chin. Like, until about three weeks ago. It was definitely smaller, but I was too distracted by other ‘trouble’ zones to pay proper attention to it.
The other day, on my way home from work, I nestled my phone into my new car phone-charger/wanna-be-a-cop-holder and accidentally hit the buttons just right so I didn’t know the camera was on and pointed at me. It caught the corner of my eye and I saw someone was calling but couldn’t quite figure out who she was, even though she looked really familiar.
I’m such a dork. Obviously it was me.
I have a chin now, apparently. A sharp, pointy chin with a solid, strong jawline like a pit bull. Naturally this prompted a furious digging up of comparison shots and the like. Man oh man. It is so weird to see myself! It’s like i just sunk into my head and lost definition on my cheeks, eyes, chin- everywhere!
Bradley and I are going through a renaissance of looking at who we used to be. We used to be really big. I was so big that I kind of just accepted my bigness as normal. I was big enough that I thought getting down to 280 was probably a pretty healthy weight to sustain. I was bigger than most people in any given situation.
I was really big but I didn’t know it at all. I was and am still happy. My life was and is still full. We go in circles trying to honor the versions of ourselves we used to be, but we’ve finally come to the conclusion that, while those were good, well-intended people, it’s okay for us to let them go and grow out of them at last. She was unhealthy and steadfast in her willingness to live a shorter life full of things that continued to make her sicker. He loved her so much he would have done anything for her. He picked her, the fat girl in every way, and it was hard for him to let her go. I held onto her for a long time and so did he, but I’m a shadow of that girl now, not just because of my size, but also because of all the inner-reflection, the mental work, the letting go of fear I’ve been doing. He finally let that full, big, round girl go and he let me know that the newer version of me is the best, healthiest and hottest he’s ever seen, so I can finally let her go, too. At last.
I’m a better person now. Not only because I weigh less- I’m happier. Life is fuller and better. I have the energy to be so. I’m never going back, and we’ve finally linked hands and realized that we have to love these versions of ourselves best now. Those other selves belong in scrapbooks, they are people to learn from, but not so much to be anymore.*
You may have noticed a flurry of postings lately. Every once in a while I feel like it’s important to bring up my Tamara Shazam purpose and mission statement. My purpose for starting this site was as an accountability tool for myself when I started my Body Project. I needed a place to bray my accomplishments out where I wouldn’t be bothering other people who didn’t want to hear about it. I needed a place where I could obsess and be as self-centered and reflective as I needed to be to meet my goals. This place is a tool for me. Reading other blogs made me realize that I became inspired, motivated and smarter from them, so I decided that if others’ words and deeds could do that for me, my experiences might do that for you. As my favorite bloggers get closer to their goals I get inspired to do the same.
I’m posting a lot right now because I’m weak. I’m looking around me all the time for things that inspire me, move me forward and force me to reflect. Writing here this week is keeping me on target and moving me forward. Thank you for being my audience, keeping me accountable and cheering me on. I appreciate every page view and comment I get more than you could ever know.
<3 *in general terms- we are, at our cores, who we have always been, we are just leaving the cruft behind.