When Hanlie posted a comment on my last entry on Father’s Day about how she’d not seen a “before” photo of me, I started thinking about what “before” implies.
When you lose weight, it’s natural for people to want to compare what you looked like before and what you look like now. Heck, I love seeing how people have transformed physically. In this context, “before” is about what’s changed and “now” is about what’s different. But when I looked at some of my “before” photos, I realized that there’s much more going on in them than just me being fat. There’s a lot of “now” in the “before”s.
Looking at is as a “now” photo, I see my beautiful flute and think about how much I still love music and still love to play. I see Larry playing his guitar and think about much he still loves to play. There’s nothing “before” about that.
It was raining buckets when this photo was taken. It was the night of daughter Cassie’s last marching band performance at the last football game of the season. All seniors and their parents were recognized in a little ceremony on the football field. I remember, again, hating having a photo taken of me in my size 3X coat, but being so happy for and proud of my daughter. Now, while I don’t wear a 3X coat anymore, I’m still happy for and proud of my daughter (I think we still have that umbrella somewhere, too.).
What makes them the same is the love and respect we had for each other then is the same that we have now. My weight changed nothing about Larry’s feelings toward me or our relationship.
I’m sure most of us still cringe a little when we see “before” photos. But when you look beyond the physical and see the constants in the photos, they become easier to digest.