I started rereading “House of Leaves” by Danielewski. I read it when it first came out and it scared the crap out of me. I guess I want to repeat that experience again. So in the first few pages he mentions the wife of the protagonist and says that she’s nearing her forties and struggling with staying trim and aging and living a suburban life. And in another book I'm listening to ("The Bedlam Detective") there's another female character who's nearing her forties, struggling with staying trim and aging and living a provincial life.
I had to set the book aside for a few minutes after that and think for awhile.
Two totally different novels and the women characters are struggling with exactly the same things I'm struggling with! You mean I'm not unique in this? AWESOME!!!
It suddenly struck me that all my complaining and whining about my weight isn’t really about my weight at all; it’s about my AGE. I'm having growing pains again, only they're psychological pains.
I’m about seven pounds heavier than I was at my thinnest, so I’m about normal. It’s not the weight that gets to me, but a general THICKENING. Like I’m just more SOLID or something. I look in the mirror and I see pretty much what I am: A middle-aged wife and mother of two. It’s so weird! I mean, I think: Holy cow! That’s YOU in the mirror, Tanya. You with graying hair and a few wrinkles and…you’re like…A WOMAN. And a MOM. When people see you on the street they probably think "She looks like she bakes really good cookies".
I’m actually really good with that, but still some of it is hard.
I look at pictures of myself when I was in my twenties and I think: Holy crap. You were really cute! Why were you so hard on yourself?
Don’t you just sorta wish that you could go back to your younger self, but have the confidence and self-esteem of your older self? I do. And I’m sure twenty years from now I’ll look at my 38-year-old-self and see someone who is curvy and youthful and still cute.
I just wish I could see that NOW.