Monday, 12 November 2007

Mirror mirror on the wall

I weigh 70kg today. A mere matter of grams and I will be back to under 70 for the first time in years. Since before I got pregnant with the Grot. Back into normal territory...

Except I dont' feel normal. I feel hideous. I look in the mirror and I don't see 8kg lost - I see 20 kg left to go. I don't see curves - I see lard. Mountains of it. Ugly purulent lard. It creeps up my thighs, encircles my waist, strangles my arms and infiltrates my brain.

I look in the mirror and I see the hair that won't be tamed, the features that are even more prominent and more ugly. That will never go away no matter how many servings of dessert I nobly pass up.

I look in the mirror and I see nothing attractive whatsoever. I glance beyond at my sleeping husband and know that he is lying when he says that he is attracted to me. Because no one could be.

I look in the mirror and think about all the overcompensating I do for being both ugly and fat. The losers quinella. I think about my marks and my art and my music and my work and my "niceness" and all those other things that I strive to be good at so taht people forgive the other stuff. But as I stare back into those brimming amber eyes I know that no one cares and that they can see through all those attempts anyway. A genuinely good, sweet, smart, friendly, artistic, clever person would never have to work at it. They just would be.

I look in the mirror and remember those same eyes before me years ago, the pale and naked and thin body, but still ugly. I remember the beautiful sting of cold steel as it brought ruby red blood drops onto my palm. The way that pungent metallic smell would curl upwards; the striking beauty in blood before it oxidises and turns black and tarnished.

I look in the mirror and I wish that I could smash it, slice myself with the shards. Cover myself in that awesome pain.

I look in the mirror and I suck in a deep breath between my teeth and shake my head. And the clouds disperse and that black inky tar that descended over me dissipates. I breathe deeply some more, feeling it ball up and then release. Then sigh it out. Gulp in the air.

I look in the mirror as I do my hair for work, feel confident that I look presentable and appropriate. I smooth down the untamable hair knowing that it's futile and grab my keys and sunglasses before running out the door.

I look in the mirror and see the shadows under my eyes, violent indigo, like a lovers punch. I know that I'm tired, but I see it for the first time, how the stress and insomnia and the juggling and being everything to everyone is sucking me out and leaving that shell I left behind so long ago.

I look in the mirror and I stand tall. I am wearing soft cotton pyjamas and haphazard hair and unplucked eyebrows.

I look in the mirror and I see the competent hands, soft, strong hands. Hands that felt new life today. Hands that gently reassured and manipulated and soothed. Hands that stroked silken hair and creamy cheeks.

I look in the mirror and see beautiful golden eyes, still fighting back tears but beautiful.

I look in the mirror and I see my strength. I see the black ink around me but it is not touching me. I am holding it back with superhuman strength.

But sometimes I need reminding that it's there. Always there. Always waiting for me to slip.

3 comments:

Kisses said...

Issewes alright! You make me so sad sometimes.
But look, be proud. You know what? I've been exercising this month and today I amped up from a brisk walk to a jog. And when I was feeling slack and wanted to stop I pictured that pony tail of yours that you describe bobbing along as you run, there in front of me and it kept me going a bit longer. You're an inspiration to me...and
you've got body dysmorphic disorder or something. Don't be so hard on yourself! Hugs from me XX

Shel said...

You are beautiful. Inside, outside and all the way in between. One day you will realise just how beautiful, talented, spirited, caring and competent you really are.

When that day comes, I will be beyond happy for you.

Hugs from me my friend.

Kim said...

My gorgeous intelligent sister sees herself the way you do. Yet she is none of those things to anyone but herself. Sadly, the downside of her self-image is that her daughters now mirror her lifestyle - they barely eat, are very judgemental of themselves and they are only 5 and 3. So tragic.

I think I remember seeing a pic of you on EB (on your wedding day perhaps holding the Elfling - I may be wrong) and to me, you didn't look any of the things you describe. But I also know that it doesn't matter one iota what anyone else tells you...

I've read your diary and blog for some time now - and you may say that you have to work hard at being intelligent, nice, kind etc. But the the one thing that comes naturally to you is loving your girls. You write about your love for them with such tenderness and expression that there's no way on earth that is false!

Hold your head high, because you are an intelligent woman, who will soon be saving lives and in the meantime, you have a couple to nurture along the way.

xx Kim

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