As the folder of pictures pop up on the computer, I do a quick scan. Any photos of me? Anxious, I spot one. Double-click.
There it is.
And I'm the fat one.
It's amazing how nice my eyes are to me. These eyes that are so critical of others, and often so critical of myself, have betrayed me. There is no way that I am THAT big.
It must be the angle. Or the camera. Did I mention I'm big-boned? If only I would have been holding the baby- holding a baby that may or may not be yours makes you look at least 10 lbs lighter.
This feeling wiggles its way into the oddest of places. Sideways glances at the park at the fat mom. Driving while drinking my morning smoothie and the person in the next car looks over and shakes their head. I want to scream "IT'S FRUIT! I'M TRYING!" Looking around and knowing that you are the biggest person in the room. Ordering food at restaurants and not ordering a salad, saying hello to a stranger and watching them look me over, brushing my teeth and catching a glance of myself in the mirror, seeing my shadow... its a constant recording with no pause button.
This is not the entirety of who I am. There is a kind, creative, witty person here, and she's not even hiding underneath this thick layer. She's right here on the surface, sometimes being more kind, more creative, and more witty to speak louder than the layers.
It's a journey, and I'm at the start. Taking my time to understand this place, with its loud podcast of doubt and seemingly endless sources of self consciousness. I know that I won't be here forever, but that I can like myself and desire change simultaneously.
And in the meantime, I'll jump in a picture or two. And focus on the surroundings and the genuine smile I'll be sporting and let the measuring go.