As I struggle along with the dating life I don’t really have, I am also still struggling with my own self-image. It’s difficult, at best, to look at yourself and think your older, slightly wobbly body is okay. Adding a lack of male (or any) attention and things can go down the tubes pretty darn fast.
I added yoga to my life in January. I love it and love my teacher. I am much stronger and more flexible now. There is now muscle hiding under those wobbly bits! There is also a little less of the wobbly bits! If I could shed all the extra weight, plus a little more, I’d be awesome. But shedding the pounds at 54 is a tough nut to crack.
My knees can’t take any hard cardio, or do squats and lunges. The poses we do in yoga are held poses and my knees think most of those are okay. There a few where I do an alternate pose. I have a shoulder I broke eons ago. I don’t have full range of motion in that shoulder. It doesn’t hurt, it just won’t rotate like it did before the break. And to be quite honest, I’m not running anywhere unless I am being chased by a monster or something. I just hate to run. All this means I have to find other ways to shed to pounds I’d like to shed. I have, actually, lost a few pounds (yippeee!!!). It’s slow, and I am okay with that.
But even though I am looking better, I still struggle with facing the mirror in the morning and thinking I’m okay. All of us have mornings that are tougher than others. Some mornings I wish I had a curtain to pull over that bathroom mirror so I could avoid looking at all. Other mornings I think I look okay for an old broad. And those are the mornings I want more of.
Dating and self-image are so tied together. Well, we tie them together. It’s difficult not to tie one to the other when so many people want to judge you solely on your appearance. I am a bit chubby. Not obese. Not a BBW. Just a little chubby. But I can do some things a lot of skinny and ‘fit’ people can’t do because yoga has taught me to do them properly and I have built the strength to do them. So am I not fit and in shape?
This is the part of me I need to focus on. I am NOT a blob. I can walk for miles and feel good. I can do yoga poses that take a lot of strength and balance. And hold them. Not forever, but for a good 5 minutes (NOT an easy task). I am attractive enough. No one screams in horror when I walk in a room. Mirrors don’t spontaneous explode. Many of the men I have met for coffee have told me I am cute rather than pretty. I’ll take cute any day.
So it is up to me to accept me as I am. It is up to me to continue to work on the things I can, and want, to improve. And most importantly, it’s up to me to shut out the youth/skinny/glowing tooth obsessed world and love me for who I am.
This is one tough ride.