Disclaimer: This is not a happy post. It's unlike most of the things I post. You've been warned.
My mother is mental. Maybe she hasn't been diagnosed by a psychiatrist, but stay around her long enough and you start to notice. As a child, I knew my mother was different. She would do things that were weird, but I told myself every person has eccentricities. As I got into my teen years, I learned not everyone acts the way my mother does. Nor should they.
It was around 15 or 16 that I started making the promises. Promises to myself to make me a better person than my mother. Ways to check myself if I thought I was becoming how she was. They started off small. I won't get mad at myself if I cry like she would. I won't obsessively clean. (I think I learned that one too well.) I won't pull my hair when I brush it. I won't lie.
Then the promises got bigger. I won't call my child ugly. I won't treat them as inferior to make myself feel better. I won't cheat on my husband. I won't obsess on my looks.
I've lived by these promises. I slip up on the little things. My child still believes in Santa Claus. I get mad at myself when I cry for too long. I pull my hair when I brush it.
It's the big things that I've never slipped up on. Those things meant the most, and so I put in effort to make them stay true.
So now I come to my internal debate. I've never obsessed on my looks. I'm the Plain Jane of my family. I live in T-shirts (usually ones with geek references) and jeans. I wear little make-up, if at all. I almost became the antithesis of my mother.
I am now 32. I understand the things I can change about myself and the things that will never change. My hips will never get smaller. Neither will my nose. But I've also learned what can change. My tummy could be flatter. My arms more toned. I've tried to be logical and intelligent about myself and so far it's worked.
And then I cosplayed. I made sure I was comfortable in the clothes. And I was honestly happy with how the outfit turned out, and how I looked in it. This year I decided to make more outfits and cosplay again.
All was going well until Christmas time. Between December and February, I gained 10 pounds, making me overweight according to most charts. My self-esteem took a nose dive and so trying to be logical, I decided to work out, something I hate and have never had to do before. I knew I could drop those pounds and be back to where I wanted to be to cosplay.
As of today, I've only lost 3 pounds, which has been discouraging me. The alarm on my phone goes off, telling me to work out, and I debate myself on the merit of actually doing it.
- Side 1: Yeah, work out time!
- Side 2: But we're not getting anywhere. I'm going to be a fat Lilith/Nami/Lucy at Otakon.
- 1: We're are getting somewhere. Maybe not in weight, but in muscle.
- 2: Maybe, but I want weight off. The number makes me feel better.
- 1: You're an idiot. It's what's visible that matters.
- 2: But most charts say we're too fat still.
- 1: That's true, but if we keep working, you'll look good in that cosplay we've been working so hard on and the number will go down. :)
And so today I have a new confidence. I'm going to keep working and when cosplay time rolls around, I'll just put on those clothes and not judge myself. I won't care about the number, I'll care about the time and effort I've put into not only myself, but the outfit too. I'll stop comparing myself to fictional characters that have unobtainable figures, and be happy with my own.
And I've decided I won't break a promise to myself and obsess over the little things. Because in the end that's all weight is.
For something a little happier, head over to TAYClassic . They are crazy happy over there. Or maybe just crazy. Either way it works. :)