He joins Kepa and talks about how his weight loss journey has impacted his body image.
Sit back. Absorb. Laugh.
‘Does Jack Give A Sh*t?’ ~Jack Sh*t
Do body image issues affect men the same way as they do women? There’s a simple answer to that question: “Hell if I know.”
You see, I don’t understand women at all, even though I’m married to one (Anita) and am at least partially responsible for raising three daughters (Sallie Mae, Holly and Pisa), I still have no clue as to what makes you lovely creatures tick. It’s a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, folded inside a brassiere.
Just a glimpse in my bathroom will explain the vastness of the difference between the she-folk who roam my home and me. I claim six items at most in that room: a toothbrush, toothpaste, shaving cream, razor, a bar of Dial soap, and a towel stolen from a Hampton Inn. The other 845 items in there belong to my wife and/or daughters. Not only do I not use any of them, I can’t even identify the vast majority of them. Clarifier? Fortifier? Exfoliating pads? Microdermabrasion gel? It makes my head spin…
So, no… I don’t claim to have any special insights about women. But I can tell you this: guys aren’t wild about being fat either.
Oh, I don’t think we have the exact same issues as the gals (for one thing, we’re perfectly happy still using the word “gals” even though we realize that you hate it). When you tell us that our ideal range should be 150-175 lbs, we take that to mean 190. When a woman hears that her goal range should be 120-140 lbs, she generally takes that to mean 99 lbs. We probably should try to meet somewhere in the middle.
I know that at my heaviest (close to 300 lbs), I could look at myself straight-on in the mirror and convince myself that I was just husky, big-boned, large-framed… that I actually looked okay. Then I’d see a photograph that someone snapped of me when I wasn’t looking and that illusion would go up in smoke. This was how the world viewed me… not at that one angle that I could pull off looking halfway normal.
I can’t speak for my entire gender, but I know that I’ve short-changed big chunks of my life by being too dumpy. Whether it was trying to talk the neighborhood kids out of playing shirts-and-skins basketball, swimming with a t-shirt on or being extraordinarily self-conscious about how I looked on the beach, there have been plenty of times when I’ve felt out of place because I was out of shape.
These days, I’m in a whole new world. I’ve lost over 90 pounds and am feeling pretty damn good about myself. Truthfully, I’ve got a bit of a swagger in my walk these days. I catch a glimpse at myself in the mirror and nod my head appreciatively. I no longer have my “camera radar” set on maximum sensitivity in order to dive out of shots. I don’t sit on the sidelines anymore; I get out there and participate.
We may not have the same exact headaches and hindrances, men and women. We don’t have the same exact annoyances and issues, you and I, but we’re not all that far apart either.
We both want to live healthier lives, want to be there for our friends and our families, want to live our own lives to their fullest.
For me, that’s what this journey is all about.