Thursday, January 28, 2016

Does This Blog Post Make Me Look Fat?

My friend Amber is participating in a 365 Grateful Project this year. Each day, she posts a photo to her social media of someone/thing she is grateful for that day and a little blurb about the person/thing. As we hung out one evening, she asked if she could take my photo for that day’s post. I was honored.

When I got home and logged on to Facebook, her post popped up right away. The first thing I thought was Oh God, I look so fat.
Here’s what she wrote: “1/14/16 - Ramona - I am so happy to have this woman as part of my tribe. She is fierce and strong and sensitive and kind. She has taught me so much in the past couple years of friendship.” That’s incredible. You wish someone would write that about you on Social Media, right? It’s wonderful. But before I could let in sink in how kind and true her words were, I sat there berating myself for a fat face, bad haircut and wide body. 

Would I ever say anything like that to one of my friends? Never. I don’t think I’d even talk like that to someone I dislike. So why do I do it to myself?

I could list all the reasons I’ve gained weight since I've retired from roller derby. Some are valid reasons, some are excuses, but I’m not going there. I’m working on accepting that yes, my body is different than it was two years ago. It’s not good or bad, it's different. It simply is. 

The thing is, I know my body is amazing. This body of mine has played roller derby, given and taken hard hits, run races, hiked to mountain peaks, skied down mountain faces. It walks my dogs every day. This body has worked many long hours on tired feet. My body has danced, laughed, cried, taken lovers. This body has hugged some of my favorite people in the whole world. My body has healed from severe illness and injury, miraculously recovered from hangovers and migraines. It displays my beautiful tattoos, houses my soul. 

All of those things are astounding. They require strength, compassion, perseverance. Why is it so difficult to remember that my body is me? It's not a separate entity to be fought against.

Now, I want to go back to Amber’s 365 Grateful post because do you see what I did? I made it about me when it isn’t at all. 

So what's the post about if not its subject? Is it about Amber? Not really. Each post is about love and connection. Most of her photos are of people and in every single one of them, that person has a big smile and is obviously feeling loved.

With each post, Amber is giving love, showing appreciation, putting it out into The Universe without asking for anything in return. Maybe the least I can do is accept that graciously. Instead of disliking my photo, I try to look at it and see what she sees.

There's a gap between perception and reality. Sometimes it's bigger than others. The way I see myself is not the way others view me but what is true?

My sweet friend has inspired me so much with her posts, and I plan to start my own 365 Grateful Project on February 1st!


  1. I'm posting from my phone to see if it works better.

  2. Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I think it's a universal feeling that we don't talk about much. Not accepting a compliment truly is depriving the giver of a gift.

  3. Your posts are ALWAYS so on point! I love, love, love reading them! I can wait for your 365 grateful project!

  4. I loved your comment about how you would never say those things to a friend, so you shouldn't say them to yourself. You're so right. Thanks for the reminder! (And by the way, when I see photos of you, the first thing I see is your smile, the fact that it's a real smile, all the way up to your eyes)