Mirror, Mirror on the Wall, Here's Why I Don't Trust You at All
When you look in the mirror, do you see yourself? Like really, really see yourself? From head to toe, top to bottom, are you able to look at yourself and your body and see the reflection as it actually is?
If your answer is "yes," then I applaud you. One would think that as a 35 year old woman I too would/should be able to do that - to look in the mirror and believe that the reflection I that I see is, well, what I see, but alas, this is not always the case.
I blame digital cameras for this. Not celebrities, not skinny models... Nope, I blame technology. Thanks to being able to "like, dislike, remove, delete, edit, correct, or post and publish" with a click of a button, I am able to scrutinize and dissect every pixel of my being, ALL. THE. TIME. Don't like the way my arm looks in a photo? Delete. Smile half baked? Delete. Eyes a little closed? GOODBYE. Alternatively, arms look amazing? Facebook! Smile darling? Tweet it! Eyes sparkly and wide? Print it!
As much as a photo makes me critical, it also gives me confidence: I have learned to like what I see (and trust) on camera better than what I see in the mirror. My point is, you can't delete the (wo)man in the mirror. You can't alter a reflection. You can't change what you see. With a photo, you can find/create/and live with your best looking self...
The other day, my Nana's boyfriend Burt (oh, surely you remember that wild couple don't you?) gave me a CD of all these photos he had taken of me and Jonah from an event he had a preschool. I can remember getting dressed that morning (black leggings, cool white tee, beige boyfriend blazer, brown riding boots), looking in the mirror and thinking, "Hey, I look good. I like what I see... Stylish, thin, not your typical 35 year old exhausted mom. I can put pull it together." BUT when I inserted the CD and started the slide show, my confidence plummeted. According to Burt's photos, I looked FAT, shlumpy... totally and completely the disheveled part to my “perfectly.” Clearly, the mirror should not have been trusted.
Why do I think what I see on the camera means more than what I see in the mirror? Why have I grown to trust and like these images better? This inability to SEE what I see in the mirror has gotten so bad, that I now try on clothes, snap a few pictures, and look at the PICTURES to see if I should actually wear them. I guess because... the mirror can't show me the exact same thing??? (Confession: I have been known to take it a step further sometimes and send the pics to my friends to see what they thing too). The biggest joke? Generally, I KNOW HOW TO POSE to make "objects appear leaner." So are these images truly accurate??
I don't know that I'd go so far to say I suffer from body dysmorphic disorder but I will say that a series of photos from a party that aren't Facebook friendly, can easily damper my mood.
Are you like this too? Do you look in the mirror and like/trust what you see? Or these days, do you rely on digital images to tell you what's really happening in those skinny jeans?
Share your thoughts here... and maybe even a "fat" photo... If you dare...