The other day, I was walking toward the reflective outer wall of a grocery store, and I knew that, in a few steps, I’d get a full view of just exactly what I look like — a much more accurate view than what I see in the mirror, because I’m so used to the mirror view, I don’t really know what I’m seeing, you know?
And I was feeling very fat, so I didn’t want to look up. And then I realized that I was walking across the parking lot with my head down, just so I wouldn’t see myself. Not wanting to get hit by a truck, I thought, “Well, but maybe I’m not as fat as I think I am! Or, maybe I am fat, but maybe I am one of those sexy fat people who manages to pull it off! And anyway, I have nine kids, so probably I look good for having nine kids! Besides, I haven’t worn this skirt for a while — maybe I’ve somehow lost weight without realizing it!” So I made a big effort to look up, and sure enough, there was my reflection. Even fatter than I thought it was going to be, and not especially sexy — just wide and worried.
I felt terrible for about thirty seconds. And then I got mad. Yeah, it’s my fault that I don’t look great. Yeah, it’s society’s fault that it’s supposed to be this unforgivable sin that I eat a lot of pizza or whatever. But I was just so tired of thinking about it. Of all the things in this wide, wide world that matter, I think I can afford to stop wondering how I look, even if only for long enough to get the shopping done.