Thursday, April 25, 2013

A Middle Aged Prom Photo With a Hundred Likes on FB

Last week, George and I gussied up and went to a fundraiser for a local hospital.  Friends invited us weeks before the event and my first thought was no,  I don't want to put on a formal dress.   I've gained weight and my middle is the worst part and you cannot camouflage that in a formal dress.

But my second thought was, well, a night out with my husband and the Doobie Brothers could be enjoyable.

As the weeks went by, I found a dress that worked, shoes and costume jewelry and on the day of, I had my hair styled in curly ringlets which I had never done before at a new blowout salon in town.  I put on a little bronzer and I felt like a real Bravo Housewife ready to go (except the limousine and potential for hairpulling!)

The babysitter and Riley took pictures with my phone and our camera.  I posted one on FB as we drove downtown.  We entered the building and rode an escalator down to the huge crowd below.  It reminded me of a scene from the movie, "Rain Man."   I started spotting people I knew immediately.   I greeted and chatted away and was surprised at how much fun I was having.  After dinner at our table,  George and I grooved to the Doobie "Boys" as the nun called them.

Half way through the evening, I looked at FB and there were over forty "likes" and many nice compliments on our "middle aged prom" picture.  Wow!

Now I am keeping in mind that my self esteem should not be based on how many FB likes I receive.  Yet, the likes kept coming and by the next morning, there were over 90 likes and over thirty lovely comments and the notices kept coming.

I didn't really know what to do with all of that positiveness coming towards me.  It took me several days to process before I was able to sit and scroll through all of the names.

I think in my mind, because I'm not at the weight I would like to be, should I be receiving such nice messages?

These are some neural pathways that need to be rewired.

I also looked at some of the other pictures that were taken with our other camera, some not as flattering.    To be utterly honest with my disjointed thinking, I had a hard time reconciling the unflattering pictures and how much fun I had.  This is what I really looked like while I was engaging, not just the most flattering picture.  How can that go together?  In my first thoughts of deciding whether to attend, I couldn't go unless I fit a certain idea in my head of how I was supposed to look.

So dear reader, I still have more self-acceptance to gain.  I have made headway, but this was a great lesson that I can have fun EVEN if I don't have the perfect body.  And isn't that the point, to have fun!

Again, the truth is...

I do have self worth at any size.  

This message is still sinking in very slowly especially after so many years of thinking the opposite and media messages reinforcing that thinner is always the goal.

I am so happy that we went to the gala.  It was fun to get all dressed up.  The FB experience shows me that perhaps people don't look at me the way I look at myself?  I need to look at myself with less judgement and more compassion. (And as I do that with myself, I am doing it with others!)  It's a daily battle but one that I need to wage, especially with my young daughters watching.

Perhaps my title should be "What A Fool Believes?"

George and I with "Doobie Boys"playing in background.

I loved my curly headed do!

1 comment:

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