*Please be warned that this post talks about body dysmorphia and issues relating to body image and eating disorders. Please do not continue if you are fighting your own ED battle, however do get support. You got this.*
Like a lot of people in this day and age, I have fallen victim to some unhealthy habits that will forever change the way I see food and myself. 4 years on and I am virtually back to my normal ways and that nightmare is locked in a box on my mental, metaphorical shelf. The one thing that I have accepted that I will always have is Body Dysmorphia.
Back in January, I said to myself that I would healthily and sensibly trim down and look after myself by exercising more and eating less brownies. I’m quite proud of how well I have stuck to this. Though, gyms are an odd place for someone with a history like mine and the one thing I absolutely hate is the mirror walls. I don’t currently own a full length mirror so I rarely see my whole body however, when I ‘m at the gym, bright red and covered in sweat, my whole body is the absolute last thing anyone would want to see yet there is no avoiding it. I see my body differently to how I image it and it is not at all an attractive sight. I swear they put fun house mirrors in the gym just to trick us.
I do find it strange (and oddly fascinating) how our minds work and perceive things such as body image. I have definitely noticed a change in my body since joining the gym, I’m sure I have, yet my jeans aren’t any loser and the scales haven’t really moved… Then, I catch myself in the mirror and everything looks 30kg heavier than I remembered. It’s the same with clothes. How can this dress
look great, trim and sexy yet as soon as I zip it up, I turn into Mrs Doubtfire?
Is that just me?
When I’m working, I’ll go days without looking in the mirror or weighting myself and those are the times when I feel most confident. Now, I know I could easily live a life without a full length mirror and scales but I then worry that I’m viewing my body in a unatual way. When I was ill, I saw myself as being big when in reality I was anything but. Now the tables have turned and I see myself in a healthier manner but how do I know that I’m still not just trapped in an illusion that my head has created? When I see how toned my carves have gotten, I feel proud. I might even have a chocolate bar as a reward. What if my toned carfs are part of the illusion and I’m just adding chocolate to an already lumpy podge. In all fairness, this is exactly how I (and many other) gained weight in the first place. The good ol’ “one more slice wont hurt” chestnut until BOOM! It did hurt.
Maybe life is just one giant fun house and I’m currently trapped in the mirror maze.
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