Worth Your Weight hit the one-year mark last week. Whoa. Like some FA bloggers have said, my own blog grew out of the desire to stop spamming other FA blogs with tome-like comments. Blogging takes more dedication than commenting, though, and I have a whole new appreciation for bloggers who update frequently. It takes a lot of time and effort. Unfortunately, I’m not able to comment and update as much as I’d like to, but it’s still nice to feel like part of an FA community. I must thank Fat Fu for that.
I am very thankful for all of you. Yep, even those I debated with — even when we couldn’t agree, even when we couldn’t persuade the other, you made me refine my argument and for that I am grateful. Readers and commenters here … well, you make this place what it is. You keep me coming back myself, and I’m really honored by our interaction. Thank you for visiting, sharing, lurking. You make me smile and further my journey.
My own FA progress is coming along nicely. Not perfect by any means. I still have at least one “I hate being fat” moment a day. Yet, resisting the urge/imperative to diet is getting easier. I actually shudder to think if I’d never stumbled across FA. But I wish I had done so earlier, like back in college or even high school.
Fat acceptance is truly a gift. It’s given me my life back to some extent. Before FA, no matter what accomplishments I had elsewhere — no matter what successes I imagined/hoped for/fantasized about — there was always the glaring “failure” of still being fat. I sometimes avoided going out because of being fat. I’m sometimes still tempted to hide, on a low or blue day.
This may be naive, but I think if fat haters/concern trolls could exist in the mind of a fat person for a day and truly experience the loneliness, guilt, self-hatred, shame, self-esteem suicide, and pain fat people deal with every day and have dealt with every day, every hour, day in, day out, year after year … just maybe they’d let up. I feel all this stuff on a regular basis, and I’m actively pursuing being a fat-positive woman! Sometimes I just think the anti-fat people believe fat shaming and hatred is no big whoop. Like a paper cut or something. Rolls off the back rolls. Erm, no. It’s more like being stabbed in the back, through the heart — and then twist.
Here’s something that sounds completely bonkers. My school friends knew I was fat. I was fat in school. Yet, years later I avoided meeting up because I hadn’t succeeded in losing any weight. Madness. It made complete sense to me at the time, and now I’m just like, “Huh?” They knew you were fat! Why would they have expected you to become perfect in the interim?
There are many paths I shunned because I thought fat stood in the way. (That includes romantic avenues. Yes, s/he is interested in you! Yes! Go for it. Even if you’re wrong, rejection is less painful than regret, IMO.) No more. It’s little acts of standing up for myself, but there are bigger things in the works, too.
I wear sleeveless shirts again. I used to whenever I wanted but then got self-conscious about my upper arms. Heh, guess what? Thin women have the water wings o’ flesh that undulate when they wave goodbye, too. Mine are larger. So what?
Another little thing is that I’ve allowed myself to wear watches and wrist cuff/bands again. I had been taught that they aren’t for larger arms. That bracelets and the like should gracefully slide halfway towards the elbow. Forget that noise. Mine may stay firmly at wrist, depending on the selection for that day. And that’s just fine. I like knowing the time, and I enjoy jewelry I’ve acquired over the years.
For years, I’ve put off a return to Japan until I’ve lost weight. (I grew up there as “The Fattest Girl in the World,” but strangely photographs of me at the time contradict how I was treated and how I felt — a common experience, post-FA.) At least now the only thing standing in my way is money.
The crux of fat acceptance, in my view, is that fat is a natural variation that’s been unjustly vilified, and the high-pressure attempts to correct it actually make one fatter. It’s not that the default human is thin and fat people are rebelling against the norm. We’re part of the norm. There’s short and tall. There’s black hair, brown hair, red hair, and blond hair. There’s brown eyes, green eyes, and blue eyes. (Not to mention the myriad combinations.) Why is it at all logical to assume thin is the only size humans are supposed to be and fat is a deviation? It’s really not.
Basically, the gift that is fat acceptance (including HAES) is enabling me to learn how to be (more) myself … not wanting to be anybody else, including thin. It’s a rough ride at times. Sometimes it’s like a summer drive at dusk with my favorite song on the radio. But at least I’m on it, you know. I feel lucky to have accidentally made my way aboard. Roll on.