I took more time than usual choosing an outfit this morning, because of two terribly conflicting forces. First, I was on my way to the 2010 Gay Men's Health Summit and, diametrically opposed to this fact, I went shopping for pants yesterday and discovered I now measure a 36 waist.
Believe me, I know I have my priorities screwed up. And I should celebrate the fact that I have now been smoke-free for seven months, and clean and sober for 21 months. Funny how quitting cigarettes and crystal meth can wreak havoc with your waistline.
But I've bought into gay cultural norms all my life. The hair, the body, the gym membership, the dance floor, you name it. My recovery process has rid me of a lot of my old ideas, but standing in a Niemann Marcus dressing room trying to squeeze into a size 36 definitely tests everything I've learned about loving myself and accepting my aging process.
(Watch a video on gay body image issues from the Summit after the jump!)