Do you ever think about PERCEPTION? I'm mostly talking about self-perception, or how we see ourselves, and how effed up it can be. I mean, seriously--can we ever TRULY know ourselves?
I mean, it took me exactly ONE BILLION LADY TSUNAMIS to know that I started to feel blah two weeks before my period, with one solid PMS day of actually wanting to die. And it took me ages to learn that for two weeks before my red buddy shows up, I'm a bloated water tower, not SUDDENLY OBESE. This may seem obvs, but back in highschool, it was one big poetic mystery:
highschool karen: "I don't know WHAT'S wrong with me...there are just these times each month that I have the DARK CLOUD over me."
I'm serious. That's how Hamlet-karen worded it. "The dark cloud." I look back now and scream: YOU HAD PMS, DUMBASS.
Or, let's say you'll colour your hair. Maybe normally your hair is light blonde, so you'll get sick and tired of the whore roots you've been sporting and you'll go for a colour that's closer to your "original" hair colour; "dark ASH blonde." Then, after you rinse the excess goop out of your hair, towel dry it, brush it and begin to blow dry it, you will think "wow, it's REALLY different! I...er...like it! Yeah! I like it!"
Then, things will start to CHANGE in your brain. They will begin to morph into something else. Your dark blonde hair, in your mind, will be BROWN.
Then, it'll be GREY BROWN. EW. MY HAIR IS THIS DISGUSTING SHADE OF DARK BLACK-BROWN. IN FACT, IT'S WITCH-COLOURED HAIR NOW. YES, I LOOK LIKE A WITCH. I MIGHT AS WELL GO OUT AND GET A CAULDRON.
I LOOK LIKE WITCHY-POO NOW. IT'S WITCHY POO HAIR. I AM EMBARRASSED BY THIS HAIR. THIS SHOCKING, DIRTY ASHES, FLAT, MONOCHROMATIC HAIR. WHEN I GO OUT WITH MY FRIENDS, I'M GOING TO LOOK LIKE AN IDIOT. MY HAIR. MY HAIR IS SHOCKING. IT'S SHOCKINGLY DIFFERENT. IT'S MAKING MY SKIN LOOK PASTY GREY. IT LOOKS LIKE I COLOURED IT WITH SHOE POLISH. I WANT MY OLD HAIR BACK. NOW I LOOK LIKE I'M FIFTY, NOT FORTY...
and on, and on.
And then, you go out with your friends and ZERO people notice that you've coloured your hair. ZERO.
And how about body image? That's the most retarded, skewed perception of them all! That is why anorexic girls can look in the mirror and think they look fat. Of course, that is the extreme example, but it's not too far off.
Let's say you know that you're overweight. You know, somewhere in the back of your brain that you're chun-kay. You accept this with a laugh and conclude that's just how you are. Still, when you look in the mirror, and your hair is all did, and you've got on a new top, and your hoots look BA-BANGO, you're not that chunky.
So then you hit the town for that girls' night out. Or, you go to that big family backyard barbecue. SOMEBODY always has a camera. They snap all kinds of pictures. And then they post them on FACEBOOK. And then they TAG you in those photos. Then you log in, and facebook tells you that you've been tagged in a bunch of pictures. Oh goody! You click over to have a look!
You spend the rest of the evening weeping.
You had NO IDEA you looked like THAT. Oh my god--look at those THREE EXTRA CHINS. That picture is HIDEOUS. That's the WORST PICTURE OF YOU EVER. It's shocking. You're beyond mortified. How can you ever go out in public again?!? How come nobody told you you were GROTESQUE?!?
Nobody else thought you were grotesque. They just thought you were you. Sure, maybe if you saw someone whom you hadn't seen in 15 years, they might be surprised by your expanded appearance, but everyone else still thinks you're the same old lovable you.
But you, on the other hand are DEVASTATED.
So it all comes down to this: I've been exercising for SIX MONTHS. Six months people. Six days a week. Sometimes I work out twice a day. I've always tried to eat healthy and go for power walks and stuff, but after years of yo-yo dieting (since I was 13), and two kids, my body held on to the extra weight with a vengeance.
And then one day I'd had it. I was tired of being worn down all the time. I was tired of feeling depressed, and I was really, really tired of being forced to only shop in the Plus size section. Do you know why? The fashion sucks in the PLUS SECTION! At least in Canada it does! Okay, there's maybe one store around that has some cute plus-sized clothes. But for the most part, those plus-sized shirts are big, frumpy, ugly squares.
And I live for new shirts, so this was a deal breaker. I was walking through the "regular" size section of shirts at Wal of evil, and there was a really cute top that I knew I'd never fit into. That was it. Right then and there I decided more than anything I did NOT want to wear plus-sized clothing any longer.
So, I've been working out like a maniac. I've been eating more vegetables. I hardly bake anymore. Whatever. I don't know how much weight I've lost, because I stopped stepping on the scale years ago. I'll find out at my yearly physical, because the doc should know.
I have gone down from a tight size 20 plus to a 16, and now my size 16's are starting to feel baggy. Nearly three inches off my hips. Weight does NOT easily fall off anymore. It's a slow journey, but it's happening.
Okay, boring karen, what's the point? The point is this: even though my clothes have become baggy..even though I have to put a safety pin in my shorts to keep them from falling down...even though I was out powerwalking in these cute capri pants, and every 20 steps made them shlump down nearly to the HAIR LINE and I had to keep hauling them back up...
there is still a large part of me that doesn't believe it.
I'm a total pain in the ass. I already informed The Man that I will have to keep asking him the same tired questions, and getting him to affirm that I am indeed smaller. He keeps typing away on his work computer and says in the same slightly bored voice: "of course--you're a lot smaller." It's obvious to him.
I just need to hear it. I also do this to my sister. I'll say tedious things like; "talk about how you found that picture of me from last year and how I look smaller!" and we'll have the same convo again about how my double chins were way bigger or how much heftier I was.
It's like a sickness..except there are days when I feel much hotter and I can actually see for myself that I look way more fit.
So, recently I forgot that I linked my twitter account to my youtube channel, and when I upload a new video for my VLOG (VLOG IS AN EVEN STOOPIDER WORD THAN BLOG), it lets all my twitter friends know.
I got a nice message from my good friend Leanne at "One Odd Duck":
(If you want to see the vid in question, wherein I bitch about exercise, click here)
I lurv her. But what did I do? I ZEROED in on the "fading away" part and I had to FIGHT the urge to immediately send Leanne a message and ask:
"YEAH?!? DOES IT LOOK LIKE I'M SMALLER? COULD YOU TELL? TALK ABOUT IT!!!!"
Seriously. It's just not good enough to say "I'll believe it when I see it," because thanks to STUPID PERCEPTION, I SEE IT, and I still don't BELIEVE IT.
Perception is an idiot.
(by the way...on my youtube channel, all I do is yack about my HIDEOUS JOURNEY through the world of exercise with Jillian Michaels' workout videos. If you'd like to join me in my repulsive struggle, I would be super excited!!! )