I have had a few more thoughts after reading comments and replying to them regarding my last post.
I think we all pretty much agreed that the image we see in a photograph is hard to accept. The image in a mirror is easier to deal with for some reason.
Our self-image is hard to change. A negative self-image that is developed over years is hard to change even in the face of evidence to the contrary. We filter our evaluation of our appearance through that self-image that was pounded in to us through constant comparisons to others that we wished we looked like. We wanted that hair, those clothes, a body like that, the popularity and all the rest of it. We lost our weight or very nearly all of it and we still don't feel like we always thought we would when the weight was off.
Most of us have to deal with flab. There are stretch marks. We are older now and time takes its toll. Is this all there is? In many ways there is disappointment so how do we feel good about how we look? Will we ever be like those who have never been obese? Probably not. We must fight the voices that tell us we still don't measure up.
But - we have done something at which many fail. We have failed many times before we finally got it right. That keeps us humble. When we have been successful for a while we can get self-righteous and judgmental - then there is rough spot and we come face to face once more with how fragile this can be. It can break like fine china. We now know once more that we have to have a healthy respect for our achievements and what it took to get to where we are. It can all be lost and we know it.
So - who should we compare ourselves to? I can compare myself to that unhappy teen who weighed 250 lb. and wore a size 24 1/2 in the 10th grade. That girl never went to a prom or had a date. That girl was constantly rejected at home and at school. Is that flab and the stretch marks worth not being like that anymore - you betcha.
I used the higher step in step aerobics on Monday. It was hard. I did better than I thought I would. I can pass up sweets with no problem. I speak up now more than I ever would have in the past.
I look good, flab and all - battle scars I guess.
Hope you can identify with some of this. I know some of you (and me) are getting close to maintenance. I can tell some of us are a little intimidated at the thought of keeping the weight off. We have failed so many times in the past and the very thought of regaining is terrifying don't you think? I know this is the third time I have lost my weight. I don't intend to do it again. If I can lose it, I can keep it off as well.
Be careful out there today.