I’m in the witness protection programme – or, at least that’s what I tell anyone with a camera within snapping distance. ‘Please don’t take my photograph or videotape my speech or even include me in a crowd shot.’ I can’t lay claim to any native American ancestry so that whole capturing of the soul thing doesn’t ring true. But I simply detest having my photograph taken. I detest seeing myself on film or on video. And I wish that people would respect that. The me that I see in the photo is not the me I see in the mirror. Somewhere between glass and celluloid, I seems to gain three chins and forty kilos.
Not that I’m vain or anything. Well, no more than might be expected being female and of a certain vintage. I rarely look in the mirror unless it serves a purpose. And there is a skinny woman inside me trying desperately to get out. But despite knowing what I need to do to set her free (eat less, exercise more) and despite desperately wanting to be that person I saw in the skinny mirror at the contemporary art exhibition in Dublin last year, I can’t seem to do anything about it.The last time I remember feeling good about how I looked was in 1994, picking PC up at Seattle airport. That’s a while ago now. And I still have those jeans – this Murphy is definitely an optimist.
I went to my kinesiologist to see what’s up – to see if she could figure out what’s blocking me – why I am so desperate to lose weight on the one hand, and blatantly refusing to do what it takes on the other. We’re slowly making progress in getting to the bottom of it and I’m tentatively scheduling my transformation to start mid-April. You’ve been warned.
So what, you might ask, has all this to do with being grateful? Well, in the grand scheme of things, when my good friends are losing livers, grandkids, jobs, and partners – if all I have to worry about is why I can’t lose a few pounds, then I need to quit my bitchin’ and be grateful that I had the wherewithal to gain those few pounds in the first place.