Leaning In – Profile Photo Edition

Something happened this morning…

It is “nothing about me” and “everything about me” … and “everything about you,” too.

Let’s see what you think!

Good Ol’ Facebook asked that you find your very first profile photo and put it next to your current profile photo to see how you’ve changed over the years.

The featured photo for this post is my first Facebook photo in 2008-2009-ish. I don’t remember exactly. (The Facebook account I now have is only six years old. Like with my many previous blogs, I joined and quit several times before finally sticking with it.)

Lots of my friends pushed the “like” button on my post and two or three of them shared their own “then-and-now”shots. Most did not and one in particular said she didn’t want to “scare anyone”. <<< This is what I want to talk about.

What does that mean? Scare anyone?

What danger lurks in comparing yourself then to now?

Of course, I don’t love everything about how I look these days. I especially dislike my double-triple-quadruple chin. At 62 (in December) I don’t expect to look the same as I did 15 years ago. But I don’t think comparing two photos is scary. Do you?

Here are my two photos side-by-side. (Top-to-bottom, actually!)

I didn’t do anything special for either one.

In fact, I am cosmetic-free in the second one, taken yesterday. (It was past time to update my photo for this blog, so I was taking one anyway!)

I also noticed – after the fact – that my lazy (legally blind) eye is getting lazier and I may be pulling it down a little, too. Or… I’ve had a stroke. No joke intended.

Point is : No, not a perfect picture. But it’s me, who I am, captured in a moment of time.

The first one was taken using an actual camera turned around with my arm outstretched in front of me. Not bad, considering.

Here’s the thing, both of these photos are ugly or beautiful… or neither… depending on who is looking and/or judging.

Scary? No.

I could muse that age has been the softening agent for me… the thing that has allowed me to quit being so worried and picky about how I look. And for me, that feels truthful.

But.

The woman who made the comment on Facebook is my age.

And, she’s not alone! I have friends who have never shared a current picture of themselves. 

Not ever!

As far as Facebook is concerned… they are perpetually 35. 

For real!

I can think of a few other women my age or older who would never, ever share such a comparison.

So…

What’s the matter with me?

Have I no shame?

Have I actually stopped caring what other people think about how I look? 

How about you?

Would you have taken me up on the challenge?

What do you think about all this?

I’d love to have a long-overdue conversation about the way society views us – mostly women, but men, too!- and how we view ourselves! 

No pressure, as always. I hope you will think about it, though.

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