16 August 2016

I care about pictures of myself

There was a photographer at the end of the 5K I ran over the weekend - my first ever 5K. Shocker, I wasn't exactly looking glamorous. I had just run 3 miles. I was running on a sprain. I didn't exactly put on any make up or do my hair before the race. I was wearing the unisex race day shirt. Theodore isn't even 9 months/39 weeks old yet, meaning I haven't been pregnant for less time than I was pregnant. There were girls there, running in their short shorts with only their sports bras as a top. They looked like they had just come from a photoshoot for Women's Health or Shape or something. But not me. I looked like this:

The look I'm going for is more internal beauty, good pride, strength, less dance crew on a fitness dvds.
So when I saw the photographer waiting at the finish line, I groaned to myself and promised to avoid her after the race at all costs. Which I successfully did. But I wasn't able to avoid the Facebook photos.

It was a terrible photo, guys. When I crossed the finish line, I felt proud yet humble, thankful, and totally elated - thanks to the endorphins. After I saw the photo, I felt humiliated, ashamed, and totally embarrassed. My heart sank. That's really what I look like? I thought I was doing so good! I haven't lost weight, but I can hold a squat for an entire song in Zumba! I can wear a 20-pound kid strapped to my back for a 5 mile hike! And that's what people see when they look at me?!

There were rolls of fat. My head was cocked at this weird angle that made my chin completely disappear into one giant column of uber-pale neck flesh. I was so disgusted with my appearance, part of me vowed right away that I would not eat until I dropped 40 pounds and I would not be seen in public again until I reached that weight.

It's a bad photo, I know! But it's blasted all over the Internet! I hid it from my timeline because even if that's what people see when they look at me, that's not a photo I want enshrined for all time.

I am so mad at the photographer for seeing the terrible "pose" and sending it to the church anyway. I am really mad at the guy in charge of posting them for seeing such shit and thinking "Sure, I'll just post all of them no matter what!" And I wish curses upon the head of whatever jerk tagged me in it. Has no one any compassion?! 9 months ago, I looked like this!

But no matter how amazing a job my lawyer of a husband did at tearing down the photo, there is still a part of me that is really ashamed. I hate feeling that way. So this morning, I took some time for mascara, eye liner, and lipstick. I put on my new shirt with my new necklace. I found good lighting, and I took some fair pictures. Pictures of me knowing I'm being photographed. Pictures of me from angles that flatter. These are the real me. Not that terrible mess a thoughtless jerk posted online.


Anonymous said...

My favorite part of that picture is twofold: the smile on your face and the tiny bit of Abigail on lower right side, obviously imitating her glowing Mama.

We had family pictures during a reunion a few weeks ago and I was dying inside while the family fawned over a picture of me, my husband and the boys with a tire swing. The kids looked cute, for sure, but Mama was awkwardly holding one baby and trying to hold the tire swing rope in the picture with the other. This pose flattered absolutely no part of my body. But it was everyone's "favorite pic," because those boys just looked so cute.

I called the photographer myself so ask for a copy of the pictures because, while the grandparents might plaster that photo in their Christmas cards, I'm going to pick one where Mama looks cute too!

Good work on the run!

nichole davis said...

I know how we can all feel when we look at a picture of ourselves that we just feel terrible in. I also know that the rest of the world doesn't always see what we see in a picture of ourselves. You know what I see a beautiful women who worked hard to achieve a goal that most people wouldn't have the endurance to accomplish. I see the well deserved pride in your eyes and body. Most importantly I see the little girl looking up at her mama imitating her pose and the important example you set for her. I see a strong women and mother. Be proud of yourself what you did is remarkable. Love yourself where you are the one who created you does. :)

Anonymous said...

Exactly so! You said it very well, Nichole. TB