I kind of regret making the first post of this blog all life-is-wonderful-and-sunshine-and-rainbows-and-flowers-and-kittens. I mean, everything I wrote here was and is true, but life still has it’s hardships. It always will. That’s one of the things you have to accept if you’re going to be happy.
That being said, I’m struggling with something I want to think out loud about right now. It’s what is on my mind today, and has been weighing heavily for the past week, and has been a thorn in my side since I was about five years old.
I remember being very proud and grown up to move from size 6 to 6x. I was finally out of the little kid section of the store and able to wear clothes from the girl’s section (I can’t be sure but I’m going to guess that this was probably the section my older sister’s clothes came from at the time). That might have been the last time I was proud of my size.
I’m 44 now and, long after I moved away from home, my mother sent me a project I did in Grade 5. I was an “all about me” thing we did in class, who I am, who I want to be. Littered throughout the damn thing is comments about me wanting to lose weight.
Want to hear some more weight related childhood memories? My mom was making cookies and I asked if I could have one; she said no, but if I lost 20 pounds she would make a whole batch just for me. I asked my mom if I could take ballet lessons because I thought I was a really good dancer; she said no, because none of the boys would be able to lift me. We were all talking about what we would do if we won a million dollars; my mom said she would send me to fat camp so I could lose weight.
I could go on and I have in the past, but at this point the voices in my head tell me two things: 1. that’s why you’re so fucked up about food, and 2. you’re 44, motherfucker, get over it already.
An important life lesson I learned many years ago is that “why” doesn’t matter. Whether or not my brother called me names, whether my parents kept our food pantry locked, whether I hid junk food wrappers so I wouldn’t have to deal with the shame and disappointment they brought, the fact is I can’t go back and change any of these things. And maybe in the grand scheme of things growing up overweight made me a kinder, more tolerant person. However, while the “why” doesn’t matter, I’m still sitting here crying about being fat.
Maybe I should focus on “why” I want to lose weight, “why” I still feel I should lose weight if the very thought of it causes me so much pain. Here’s the thing, though. I don’t fucking want to lose weight. I don’t want to diet. I don’t want to think about it, I don’t want to care. I don’t want to feel guilty for eating a cookie, I don’t want to rebel and eat hamburgers and chips and chocolate constantly now that I’ve decided to try again when I was perfectly happy and satisfied to eat salad last fucking week.
Okay, I want to lose weight because my clothes are tight. I could buy bigger clothes. But it’s embarrassing. Squeezing into a plane seat, uncomfortably shifting at the theatre, wearing shitty old clothes because I’m unwilling to give up the possibility that I will fit into the pants I wore a year ago or the shirt I wore five years ago. And it’s dangerous. I feel my body labouring more when I’m bigger, my extremeties go numb when I’m not giving my body the fuel it needs to work properly, I know the dangers of heart disease and diabetes and all the other bad things that being fat can cause.
Why does it have to be so damn important? Why do people always have to say something? Why does the mere act of declining a cookie at work cause people to tell me it’s okay to just have one, and that I shouldn’t feel bad about it, and diet diet fucking diet. Why is everyone always talking about losing weight, not just in reference to me but for themselves? Why do larger role models, big women who make a name for themselves in spite of being large, suddenly lose weight after they become famous? Why is every role for fat actors about being fat? Why do I still get so fucking worked up about this??
I am happy, I’m in a good place, my confidence is strong and it is good. For the first time in my life, I am in a relationship that has absolutely nothing to do with my weight. He doesn’t love me in spite of my weight and he doesn’t love me because of my weight. Although, if I were to be honest with you, I do think he would struggle with a lot of insecurity if I were to lose weight but that’s his problem, not mine, quite frankly.
So I thought I had it all figured out, I thought I was past all this. I promised myself that I would lose 60 pounds this year. It’s March, I’ve gained 2. I decided that I would talk to someone about this because I don’t know where to go with it anymore, but then I figured what could someone tell me that I don’t already know, what could I try that I haven’t tried before? I asked my little sister/best friend/confidant for support and that is kicking me in the face like a sonofabitch.
I don’t want to try, anyway. I just want to be. I don’t want to work at it, I don’t want to think about it, I don’t want to care, I just don’t want it to be a part of my life anymore. It makes me mad. It makes me rebellious and disappointed and ashamed. I wish I could stop eating for fuel and only eat for pleasure, the way I smoke a joint every now and then, or have a bottle of wine on the weekend. I wish it didn’t matter if I exercised or ate healthy or…
But that line of thinking isn’t going to help. It’s out there, I can’t avoid it. Maybe I should talk to someone about this. Or maybe I should just buy some bigger clothes and shut the fuck up about it already. But then I’ll never get past it.
Want to know something funny? A large part of the reason I started and continued this search for internal/eternal happiness is because I thought if I was happy, I would no longer be fat. I have since learned and accepted that one has nothing to do with the other, but I still hold on to the hope that some day my fat will disappear and I will be thin and it won’t matter. Good luck with that, me. Fool.