Self-Image

September 1st, 2016

I look at myself, and what do I see? Scar tissue, stretch marks, and scratches. A bent arm. A swollen wrist. Hair that just won’t act “professional.” Thighs that won’t fit into my old slacks and jeans. A small, but still annoying, wheat belly. Pasty, pale skin. Dark circles under my eyes. A wonky jaw. Callused feet.

I look at myself through another’s eyes, and what do I see? A sly smirk, and smiling eyes. Wavy, soft hair. A strong body, and soul. Arms that can carry a load. Legs that can stand all day, and still run around at night. Soft skin, and smooth curves.

Show me what you see? Tell me I am beautiful? Make me believe?

It isn’t everyday that I have trouble with my self-image, but it is many days. In high school and much of college, I wore baggy t-shirts, and sweatshirts. My body was a thing to hide. As I got older, and married, then into dating again, I wore tighter shirts, and skimpier clothes at clubs and parties. Learning to be more confident in my body.

Now, I’ve reached the point that many of my clothes are growing tighter, or not fitting at all. My last doctor visit showed my weight higher than I ever remember it being. I don’t feel bigger, but I don’t feel confident, either.

And my independent spirit rebels – I don’t need someone else to tell me I’m attractive. But some days, I do. I’m not asexual, I want to be attractive to others, not myself. And I know I am, there is evidence, even sober evidence. It’s just that, like many of us, it is sometimes hard to believe.

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