“The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.” — Marcus Aurelius
So basically the story goes that I was overweight as a child primarily due to cultural and social factors (like my family and living in America). I then did Weight Watchers at 12 years old and ended u plosing about 60 lbs, bringing me to a nromal weight. But I still wasn’t bikni thin and didn’t have the perfect body, so I did some extreme dieting to lose maybe another 30 more. Ganed about 10-20 lbs back since I couldn’t keep up with that forever and because of theextreme dieting, developed an aversion to any and all attemps to write down what i ate or limit myself. However i did have a bit of coordinated weight loss for my boyfriend’s prom- and he still didn’t think i was thin enough. But after that, though my weight did go up and down mostly in response to my mood- for instance, getting back into weight lifting, losing said boyfriend (and some weight), geting into a toxic relationship (gaining weight), being unemployed and directionless after college (gained weight), interning in dc which I loved (lost weight) andteaching english in france (lost weight)
in france when i was teaching i was effortlessly thin. definitely not model thin, but healthy and curvy. of course i never felt like i was thin enough. i didn’t pu any special effort into achieving this, though i did walk a lot, exercise, and prepare almost all my meals at home due to a limited budget
then i gained weight again, and it was like an avalanche. i broke up with my sort of boyfriend but wasn’t really detached of him emotionally, and left paris which i really didn’t want to do emotionally because i finally felt like i belonged for the first time in my life. while i had started gaining a little weight back in grad school in paris- eating like my best friend, and letting go a little bit due to the rigorous studies- i probably put on at least 10 lbs, more like 15 in about 3 months. i maintained that weight more or less troughout the program, then put on another about 15 lbs after school ended and i was looking for a job.
making my post- grad weight about 25 lbs heavier than my highest “normal fluctuation” weight. all my clothes didn’t fit, and as i’m also older and more womanly, i had killer curves that required buying stuff in the woman’s plus size section. which, for a person who believed losing the weight was mybiggest personal triumph, seemed like abject failure. of course i felt like an abject failure for a host of other reasons.
butit was kind of an interactive system. and i knew at some level that once i made peace in my mind i would have peace in my body and i thought the weight would kind of magically go away. of course, as i recovered from my existential depression and started to feel normal- honestly, i would say today is the first day i really feel like my new old self- i still had/have some holdover habits. my brain is always fighting between making me want to stay on the fatter side to stay more invisible and under the radar, ward off shallower people, fight the good feminist fight, and because i do like food, and of course, wanting to be more healthy and get back to th e”old” me and seeing my weight loss as “proof” of success. Which has not always been easy for me to own.
Despite the weight challenges, and not feeling happy, I have accomplished a lot in the past appro 2 years of increased weight:
getting my mba
traveling to more than 10 countries
getting my first job
working in france
finding a career i like
getting rid of shitty men in my life
adapting to life in paris
owning my wants, desires, and dreams
being totally sexually liberated
finding my voice
this blog with more than 500 entries and 452 followers and counting
however, it is clear to me that being healthy is really important for me and it is deifnitely letting myself down to eat shitty food on a consistent basis. My health is important. and i do feel like i would feel better at a lower weight. there are times i could feel myself energetically lose weight, like my heart just felt ten pounds lighter.
the truth is that getting back to my “happy” weight is not really what i want. no number on the scale or reflection in the mirror, no admiring gaze or fat loss percentage, no amount of achievement can really give me what i’m looking for here. and i think that’s why i’ve become “lazy” or undisciplined. because i know what i really want is inside of me.
and it’s not even approval from a man. i have gotten hella approval from men with my new curves. and in a way i totally dig them. it feels like a little too much, and i look at my old pictures in envy, but the truth is that being heavier forced me to find soem self worth an dself esteem by looking within. i coudl only find out this way tat there was more to beauty, for real, and that i could be beautiful at any size.
Both inside and out.
and that i not only do receive love, approval, sex, you name it at a bigger size, but also that i deserve to. and i am not a failure, as i told myslef before, during and after puting th epounds on.
i do hope to take the pounds off. but more importantly, i hope to take the weigt off the lie i tried to tell my soul, that i am only worth my achievements.
this fat has been a shield for me. it has been a gift. it taught me so many lessons.
thanks to this fat, i have really come into myself as a woman. i have found my power, my sexiness, loved my maternal feminine softness, gone against social standards, and really felt beautiful.
without this fat, i probably would not be the beast that i am today.
losing weight is not really a priority in my life. it hasn’t been, because it is ultimately not that important.
being healthy is.
i have made losing weight into this holy grail of wat it means to be a worthy and accomplished nad deserving person- and it’s not.
i have also found that the “protective” effects of fat- like supposedly being less sexual and less appealing to others in general- are not actually all that true. Curves are not something you can hide behind. you may feel like the elephant in the room, and just so much bigger than everyone around you, but it can also feel a bit powerful to be larger than life. and to take up all the space you like, and to eat that chocolate that the skinny girls are putting down because they are afraid they won’t be sexy if they eat too much.
so yes, being fat has, overall in my life, been a mixed blessing. it has not only been a curse. even as a child having to overcome environmental conditioning to eat unehalthfully, that really helped me grow as a person. and now, accepting my fat as what feels like my cardinal flaw is an important part of learning self acceptance.
i feel likei put on te fat because of the neuroticism and ridiculously crazy singleminded desir eto come from france. to me it has been a symbol of all my unhealthiness and lack of self worth.
but maybe the obstalces is the way, and i can absorb the lessons this fat has taught me, and release the actual fat itself.
not to mention, seeing all the plus size models out there, especially that my beset guy friend is always dating, i’m just like, hmm, i could do that.
and i really want to take some boudoir pics. especially while i still have a little extra on me. i love my body, and i want to remember it.
so yes, thank you body as you are now, for all the amazing things you do. Damn girl!
also you are so feminine and curvalicious and shapely, i am pretty nice to the eyes and to the touch.
and most of all, thank you for helping me experience this life. thank you for getting a funny feeling in my tummy to let me know i am mad or sad. thank you for feeling relaxed and letting me know i’m happy. thank you for orgasms. thank you for seeing, for eating, for touching and smelling.
thank you for being me.