Before and after photos are one of those things that frustrate the hell out of me when it comes to fatness and weight loss. Seeing so many people congratulated on no longer having a “before body” is part of this frustration since we are taught to be in awe of those people who have an “after body.” Before images are always framed as being worse than the after image, in relation to weight loss it is the after image that always triumphs the before.
I don’t have a before body or even an after body; it’s a forever body. My body isn’t a failure and having an “after” image doesn’t make the before any less worthy/beautiful or as good of a body.
You all can guess at the things I did between the before and after.
*There are numerous forms of before and after photos that don’t frame the before in a negative way but I have yet to see one with weight loss.
This is awesome and so true. For the record, there is nothing wrong with losing weight or gaining weight. What I have a problem with is associating weight with happiness. I am so tired of watching girls at the DC agonize over what they’re going to eat lately. I’m tired of listening to the endless diatribe of diets floating through the newly warm air signaling the coming of summer and obsession to obtain the perfect beach body. I’m tired of hearing the daily string of self loathing coming from my friends’ mouths and my own.
No, this does not exclude me. I am just as guilty. But to move past it, I think it’s important to take a step and acknowledge why you are truly feeling insecure and fixating on your body. My anxiety doesn’t stem off from my body, but rather takes root in my heart or my mind, and then entwines itself through my flesh. Sometimes it’s hard to look through the thicket and not get pricked by the thorns. You are beautiful inside and out and no matter how overwhelming life gets, you will survive. You don’t need prince charming to cut through the weeds and defeat the dragon to tell yourself that. Be your own hero.
Weight will not make you happy in any capacity, whether you want to lose or gain.
Weight will not make you smile. When you look back on happy times, do you think of how you picked a salad over pizza or that time your best friend made you laugh?
Weight will not make you successful. Weight did not get you where you are now – your hard work, determination, strength, and passion did. You didn’t land that great job or graduate from high school or college because of your weight.
Weight will not get you friends. You’re kick-ass personality will do that all by itself!
Weight will not get you a boyfriend. In fact, all two times that I’ve had a serious boyfriend, I was probably at my highest weight. And my happiest. So tell that gnat-like voice that whispers to you that you’re not good enough to go fuck off.
Your body is merely a capsule for all the wonderful things that you are. Once you start letting go of the numbers, and deal with what is truly pulling you down, you will be happy.
So here are my before and after pictures…