Strip down and take a good long look in the mirror. Your reflection is the photo-physical manifestation of every decision you’ve ever made, your unique genetic relationship with time and externals, and your current system state. Which is to say… this is you, now. This image is the fullness of your humanity expressed in a single quantization of time. Reject it, and you reject the entirety of your existence. Accept it with unrelenting compassion, and you – maybe for the first time – discover love.
But what use is philosophical intellectualization when your whole body wilts with shame at the mortification of having allowed your dimensions to start sliding off the bell curve of culturally indoctrinated hotness? Actually, you’d be surprised. But you’ve got to get down and dirty if you’re going win over your limbic mascot (your emotional brain) and get your whole system on board for celebrating and loving ‘The Before’.
My hallway mirror and I had been ships in the mist all fall and winter, so it was quite a surprise, come spring, to discover I was a honkin’ 30lbs heavier than my bikini ideal. Philosophy’s fun, sure, but damn it I’m a girl! I hardly recognized my own body; I had become a ‘Before’!! No one else to blame. Sure I’d been dealing with grief, and a winter that dragged me along with it to its bitter slushy end, but I was also digging deep into my humanity in an exploration of… Ya, ya, truth is I lasciviously maxed out my glamours and insatiables in an unrestrained orgy of debauchery, mostly while wearing extremely unrestraining track pants – hence my surprise.
“Oh shit,” I said, looking down, “this is not good, not good at all.”
I happen to be one of those lucky bitches who gets off on broccoli and hiking, so losing weight wasn’t my biggest concern. But I really didn’t want to feel like shit for the next few months while I whittled myself back down to my ideal system state proportions. Solution? Push the boundaries of permission (introduced last post).
I’m not kidding about down and dirty! OK, first up, permission to experience gratuitous joy in sensory context of body, connecting experience of body with ebullient brain state. Homework: new morning routine of dancing naked to fave tunes in celebration of being a woman who peaks her pleasures with total abandon. Hell ya! Next, take fun (strategically flattering!) ‘before’ pic that is a celebration in itself (see pic – pssst missing letter is M). Note: I know I look ironically, infuriatingly skinny in mine – one word people… ANGLES! Rework wardrobe to accept and accentuate new curves to improve aesthetic and social feedback. Done, and done.
But we’ve got to get our primitive brains primed if we want a true visceral change in perspective. I had to somehow seduce Mitch-the-insatiable-itch. Dressed as full-on Christina Hendricks from Mad Men sexy buxom secretary, I “took my new tits out on the town” – objectively ignoring anyone who was ignoring me and replaying any and all ogling to imprint it in my memory. I also made sure to engage in some very strategic boob-centric flirtations – figured hubby wouldn’t mind since it was all in the name of ‘research’ ~wink.
The internet will give you precedent of permission for almost anything. Thus, I discovered ‘gainers’ and the men who love them. Google if you dare! Defining the extremes can help you find your place in between. Nerd that I am, I made notes. I paid close attention to the specific language the women used when talking about their bodies and expressing their fantasies. I also made note of the luxurious, sometimes surprising, ways their men touched/fondled/caressed different areas.
Permission to celebrate ‘The Before’ must come from within, so once again I left my own man on the sidelines so I could take permission into um… er… my own hands. All for brain science! Now, without getting too TMI here, I can only say this: training a new glamour by incorporating the gainer language, visualizations, and tactile techniques into my own experience made for an… um… ‘transformative’ event – the first time, the second, the… But I’m afraid my brain training may have worked a little too well. I’m actually sitting here thrilling in my own cleavage. So why am I still bothering to lose the weight? Find out in an upcoming post!
5 thoughts on “Dare to celebrate ‘The Before’”
I have to confess I sat down to give a quick eye glance at my emails before plunging into the day’s work…and here I am, deep into your text, nodding, taking notes (you’re not the only nerd!) and cursing the reign of sweatpants which conceals what’s really happening….I like the idea of giving yourself permission, of embracing who we are in the moment, or recognizing that every decision we’ve ever made is present here in this moment, traced on this body…..
Thank you for the amazing comment, Lynn! I’m chuckling here at having drawn you away from work and into my cozy (if mildly inappropriate) world – muhahahah! Permission, when understood as a biological event, can give us access to whole new frameworks of attention and motivation. I’m curious, have you ever explored your own relationship with time? Might surprise you!
I knew I was pushing the line with this post, but I truly believe that only our most honest selves have the right to invite others into new trial-tested paradigms of acceptance and joy. Everything else is just Oprah-isms. All that “live your power” bullshit doesn’t do us any good if we don’t do the nitty gritty (down and dirty!) work to bring our whole humanity on board for change.
You think the way I do! ‘If things dont fit, change the parameters and the problem goes away’. Works with all sorts of problems (wa-a-a-a-a-ay beyond clothing – for various geeky reasons the first thing I think of in such matters is phlogiston)…A great concept. Look forward to the next post!
Matthew, I just love your comments!! Great minds think… (how does that saying go? lolz. I have to confess to a total google moment when I read the word “phlogiston” – who’d have guessed that J.J. Becher would be such a true prototypical Blank Canvas Thinker – man after meee own heart… sigh. The breadth of your own brain never ceases to amaze! No one ever talks about how reframing a problem is only the first step… gotta get down and dirty to really jump-start our rewiring – but of course that’s (almost) always the fun part.
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