The Self Sabotaging Girl Living Inside Me

There’s this weird thing that happens when you transform  your body. I’m not sure, but I suspect, that I’m not the only one to have experienced it. When I first lost the weight, and substantially trimmed down my body, it’s as if my brain got left behind. The fat me was still trapped inside the much slimmer version of me.

I remember waking up in the mornings and the first thing that would happen is my hands would fly to my belly, touching and checking to make sure that the slimmer version of me was real, not something I’d dreamed up. For the longest time, I  struggled with a terrible fear that I’d dreamed my weight loss journey, that at any moment, I was going to wake up and find myself back where I’d first started, fat, unhealthy, uncomfortable, 118kg’s again.

I’d walk past a mirror or see my reflection in a window and I’d get a shock by who I saw reflected back at me. I couldn’t believe that the new, smaller version of me was really me. It was the most incredible, liberating, confidence building experience.

Then, over time, my mind caught up with my body and I got used to how I looked. It stopped being the “new” me and just started being me.

But in the last few months, I’ve noticed a new shift in my persona. And it’s made me realize that the struggle for body positivity is a very real thing. In my mind, it’s like I’ve reverted back to the fat girl. And lately I find myself being very overly critical of how I look.

We had a photo shoot for a publication a couple of weeks ago, where my husband snapped this shot of me:

  And then this photo I snapped of the girls and I shopping this weekend:

Do you know what I see when I look at these photo’s? 

Fat me. 118kg me. And it scares the hell out of me.

I was with a friend over the weekend, she’s also been on her own long and successful weight loss journey. And she commented that I looked so damn good in the photo’s from the shoot. I was totally taken aback, because I don’t think I look good, I think I look fat. Her response….. do you know there’s a mental illness named after that.

And she’s right. I just wish I knew how to not see myself that way. I dunno guys, I’m struggling at the moment. It’s like my mind and my body have aligned and what I have now is less than I want to be, I just don’t know how to get back to that positive place, how to get back to that positive image of me that buoyed me for almost two years. That had me feeling confident and passionate and ready to take on the world.


  • Michelle Reitsma

    June 27, 2016 at 8:23 am

    I totally totally understand Sharon, I also wish I knew what to do. I m about 5kg more than I d like to be at the moment, but when I see a pic of myself all I see is fat and am overwhelmed with self loathing!

  • moonstormer

    June 27, 2016 at 9:16 am

    Wow I identify so much with this – i firmly believe that all women have some degree of body dysmorphic disorder because we all think we look different than the rest of the world sees us. I look at pics of me and all I can see are double chins and pudgy stomach, where apparently all anyone else sees are nice curves and happy smiles. But I also know that even at my slimmest I thought I could stand to trim even more. Determined not to pass that on to my daughter, but it’s really hard to see myself differently.

  • Vee

    June 27, 2016 at 12:03 pm

    Having fluctuated in weight dramatically back and forth for the last 20 years, I know this feeling all too well. Ironically, when I was at my lowest weight after a year of breastfeeding (58kgs) I looked in the mirror and only saw fat. And at my heaviest (82kgs) I would see fat, but my mind would trick itself into thinking it wasn’t so bad. Until I saw photos of myself and would be disgusted. It’s amazing how intelligent, fantastic women suffer from their body image despite logically wanting to love their bodies. Sterkte.


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