Monday, April 26, 2010

Photos Finished

Yesterday, Jon and I had our 10th anniversary party. It turned out to be a really nice event, even though I had to attend it in a wheelchair. But the restaurant (My Kitchen in Forest Hills, NY) did an awesome job catering and everyone raved about the food. Plus, it was wonderful to be surrounded by so many people who love us. I think in some ways I enjoyed this better than our wedding because it was a lot more intimate and I didn't have to deal with all of the stressful preparations that come with planning a wedding.

The only bad spot were the pictures. I HATE having photos of me. I'm kind of like Chandler Bing from that episode of FRIENDS where he could just not smile well for his and Monica's engagement photos. It's also hard to look at a photo and see how fat I really am, especially when I'm surrounded by my normal-sized friends.

This is why I always take pictures of the sights on our trips, but Jon and I rarely get into any photos ourselves (even though he's not fat). This is also why I love to video people, but prefer to stay behind the scenes as the narrator. This way, I'm part of the action, but no one has to look at me. I'm kind of like Charlie from Charlie's Angels -- you know I'm there, but at the same time, I'm invisible.

Well, since it was our party yesterday, I gave in and let some friends take pictures of me. I wish I hadn't. It was exactly as I feared -- I resembled a huge, melting mound of flesh and looked so so HUGE. Plus, I haven't had a proper shower in weeks so my hair and skin weren't too great. I know that in my friends eyes, I was just me and they jut wanted something to remember the day by. But for me, seeing myself like that was a horror show.

I suppose seeing the truth isn't a completely bad thing -- maybe I need to see how I really look so that I'll do something about it and lose the weight. But the thing is, I have been trying to and would prefer not to look at myself until I lose some more pounds. I feel the same way about my broken leg; I refuse to look at it when the doctor periodically checks it until it's healed. I don't want to look at bruised flesh. I don't want to look at fat, melty flesh, either.

Now before you go on thinking that I suffer from some sort of body image disorder, I don't. There have been periods -- even when I was overweight --where I was fine with what I looked like. A few years ago, I trained for that 20 mile walk and though, I was still overweight, was toned and in decent shape. I looked big, but not all horrific and melty, and was OK with having my pictures taken. I went to Disney with friends that summer and posed for bunches of shots with them, even though I was the largest in the group. I even have one of those photos hanging in my office because I like it so much.

But for now, I don't want my oversized body documented. Perhaps when I do lose the weight (if I ever lose the weight, which as I get closer to 40 is seeming more and more impossible), I'll look back and appreciate these photos of me from when I was larger. Perhaps they'll remind me of what I've overcome and how I don't want to get back to that size.

While I'm at this size, though, I want to feel as normal as possible, especially since I can't even walk at the moment. I can joke about being in a wheelchair, but not having my legs back is slowly getting to me. Seeing myself looking larger than life AND in a wheelchair makes me feel even more like a freak than I already do -- and it gives me a sense of what my future could be like: me, ENORMOUS, stuck in a wheelchair because my weight is keeping me from walking. Ugh.

So for any friends reading this, I'd appreciate it if you'd respect my wishes and not take photos of me for now ... or at least strategically pose me and photo shop me so I look a lot thinner. I know that it's difficult to understand what I'm going through as a thin person, but this is a serious issue for me and I need to be heard.

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