Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Fire Dancing In Union Square - I Am Not My Hair

December 11, as part of the San Francisco Food Bank's Canned Food Drive!

I am not my hair... and...

So here I am looking in the mirror. I imagine it is somewhat like waking up from plastic surgery. The face I¹ve known my whole adult life is disappearing before my eyes.

Since July, I've lost nearly 40 pounds and it is starting to show up in my face... Or rather, starting to not show up in my face.

It was one thing when I looked in the mirror and didn't recognize my body --- I mean, that's weird enough. And let me tell you, it is weird. It's especially weird now as I'm moving from a "fat" body to a "chubby" body. One of my girlfriends recently described it more or less saying that now I just look like I'm a chubby normal person rather than a not-so-fat fat girl. It's
definitely a different place to be.

But that's not nearly so challenging as waking up and looking in the mirror and my face just plain looking different. I'm not talking wrinkle lines, grey hair or zits or things like that. They are much more gradual and one seemingly has time to acclimate to them.

I'm talking big chunks of my face are seemingly gone. It looks weird when I write it -- but it looks weirder in the mirror. In the last 3 weeks I've ping ponged around in a 7 pound range which I swear all shows up in my face. At the top end of it I look like a different person than the bottom end of it. I'm massively impacted by it and I feel like I'm going crazy.

Did you know that you have fat on your forehead? I mean, I'm not that surprised my jaw looks different -- no more double chin makes sense. I -am- surprised my chin looks different and I notice a different shape to it. I'm not surprised my cheeks look different -- they were pretty full to begin with. But the sallow in my cheeks is a new look and the fact that I see my nose differently because I have less cheeks is just disturbing. But my forehead? I mean, that's a complete shock. I guess maybe it's just a shocking shock where the rest of them are just shocks I hadn't thought would happen but make logical sense at least.

My whole face looks different to me. So now I'm really struggling with looking at myself in the mirror.

Who is that person looking back at me that I don't recognize? I've never seen her before in my life. Not her body. Not her face. And I'm left with a feeling of, "that's not me."

And while I am not my body or my face or my hair or any of that, I do live in that body that owns that face and that hair and all of that is, at best, unfamiliar and feels wrong/off/weird/strange/just not right