New Place - New Fixtures and Fittings
Recently I moved to a new property. Moving presents multiple challenges and will test the patience of even the most kindred spirits, as I am sure many of you can relate to! The move I embraced as a fresh start in a great new space. The property has all that I need to live comfortably, its safe, well located, pet friendly, has parking, is very close to public transport and amenities... so what more would one need I hear you ask? It's even got lots of great fixtures and fittings including mirrors...
Agh the Mirror!
The mirrors are in the living area and the use of the mirrors has been a design feature to create space or more the illusion of the space being larger than it is. It works and it does not bother me at all in the living area. It brightens the space and is great to do a quick check that there are no foreign bodies in my teeth prior to walking out the door! So what is the problem with the mirror?
It's My Friend and My Enemy
The mirror for years now has been my friend and my enemy, is that what has been named "the frenemy"! Yes that is right my friend and my enemy. On a good day it's been my friend and on a bad day it's been my enemy! Scary but true the majority of the time it's (the mirror) has been my enemy. The mirror has brought about many an emotional breakdown, tantrum, yes a grown up tantrum because it's highlighted a body part that isn't perfect. In fact I cannot recall a time from the age of approximately ten to 40 that I looked in the mirror and saw myself. All I saw was imperfections and ugliness and nothing good enough or worthy enough of anybody's attention.
The Battle with Body Image
For years now I have battled with body image. Here is a factual description of Body Image, taken from the National Eating Disorders Collaboration www.nedc.com.au
"Body Image is the the perception that a person has of their physical self and the thoughts and feelings that result from that perception. These feelings can be positive negative or both and are influenced by individual land or environmental factors."
This description is a really professional way of saying there is NOTHING you can find that you like about yourself, most days in fact if at all. And it's awful.
More on the Mirror and Me
My love and hate relationship with the mirror began some 30 years ago and to say the least has been destructive and not something I would wish on anyone. My poor association with the mirror has brought about episodes of anxiety, depression and hundreds of days spent hiding in oversized clothing. The healing continues and most days now I am happy to say I am comfortable in my skin. Managing the mindset is a daily challenge that I refer to as mind workout, I refuse to let it beat me and fall back into old habits that were a contributing factor to poor body image and associated eating disorders and abuse of my body.
Hold ... On The Purchase
So when I moved to my new place, there was and is no full length mirror in my space. Recently I was tempted to go and buy an impressive mirror that I rationalised could double as a piece of art. I contemplated this decision for some weeks whilst looking around at various mirrors and I happily came to the conclusion that I choose NOT to have a full length mirror. The purchase will not help me in any way and I have come too far ahead to want to regress with my ongoing recovery. So if you see me in the street with my undies tucked into my skirt- just tell me. If nothing else, we will both have a great giggle and I would rather a giggle at a silly moment than experience the trauma of an episode in the bloody mirror - ANYDAY!
Having a healthy body image is a social issue that I am truly passionate about. Having suffered for many years and not just my suffering, (those near and dear to me suffered too - that's another story) I want to help and support other boys, girls, men and women who can identify to themselves that they have some challenges to work on resolving so they too can enjoy life in the beautiful skin they are in. In my mind a poor body image is a manifestation that can have ongoing repercussions for way too long. That's why I want to share my story and help those that are brave enough to acknowledge the issue and face it head on so they can live their best life.
So in Cinderella's words ... Mirror mirror on the wall
Who is the fairest of them all?
To that I say - ALL OF US
Let's beat that beast called negative body image for men and women of all ages.