The Other Side of the Broom- on being fat, and not giving an eff!

I was going to post this last week, but then decided to wait a while before posting it, as I wanted to go into more detail on certain things. But then I saw this:

…and decided to post this anyway…

Although I admire the tenacity of people who challenge themselves, I personally find this restrictive and unnecessary. Please note that what follows is a personal rant on fat shaming, and not a personal attack on anyone at all, but it is rather about me and my experience, and the constant crap about what a woman should eat, should not eat, what a woman should look like not look like, dress like, feel like. It is not about hating people who diet, or being against people who wish to diet, or even caring about how other people wish to eat. I’m against the policing of women’s bodies. As stated before I was going to post this last week, but wanted to do more research on objectification and fetishisation of fatness, which I’ll post some other time instead.

I bake, so yes I’m going to be eating Cookies, muffins, cakes, candy and chocolate, I even offer these things to my Gods!

I eat chocolate when I want to and that is not that often, as when I decided to stop caring about society’s ridiculous ideals, and started paying attention to my own needs and wants it didn’t become something I needed to avoid, but rather something that I could enjoy if I wanted to. I am personally against dieting, I am against cutting out food that you enjoy, I am against the notion that half of the stuff listed on that list is “junk food.” *

I eat almost all of the things on that list, and I am perfectly healthy according to my Dr. I eat fruit, veg and vegetable protein, but I do not deny myself food that I enjoy.

Thin equating to sexiness is a fallacy. Beth-fucking-Ditto anyone!

I’m actually tired of hiding in a bubble, where I’m scared to express myself and my actual opinions as they might be unpopular. But you know what? I’m not doing that anymore. Welcome to “The Other Side of the Broom”! 

I’ve been in a bubble of denial for quite some time, saying that I might actually lose the weight, I’ve been doing that since my father died, and the truth is after 4 years it is time to stop fooling myself. How many diets did I try, where I cut out all those foods listed, and then my body craved them, even though it never had before? How many times did I restrict my eating to only healthy foods, only to be mocked, not only by others, but my own body? How many times did I say No sweets! No this no that! only for me to crash even though I was replacing each of those things with a healthy alternative? 

I am fat. Yes, I am. I was once very thin. And before that I was fat. I lost weight easily at the age of 15, probably because I had a lot of energy to burn, and it was easy to exercise for 2 hours a day 6 days a week.

I am not justifying my reason for being fat, I eat. I eat healthy food. I eat unhealthy food. I eat. I’m fat. My BMI is not in the ideal range.  I eat chocolate flavoured cereal for breakfast, and vegetables and carbs for lunch and vegetables and carbs for dinner. I eat fruit as a snack and as desert, I also eat chocolate, pizza, pies, subs, but I know when I’m satisfied, I don’t just carry on eating even though I’m getting full. I listen to my body. I drink milkshakes and coffee with 4 spoons of sugar. I drink 2% milk instead of Fat free. I eat cream. I bake almost every week, and because what I bake tastes damn good I eat it. I lick the batter out of my mixing bowl, because it is Yummy.

I eat because I’m sad, I eat because I’m happy, I eat because my food doesn’t yell at me, it doesn’t tell me that I’m disgusting and fat, and it just waits for me to eat every delectable morsel, I eat because I want to be healthy and not starving. I eat because when someone takes the time to cook a nice meal for me, that tastes really good, it is stupid to say no thank you it has too many calories, even when you’re eyeballing the plate longingly and lovingly. I eat because I’m tired, I eat because I’m awake, I eat because it’s summer, I eat because it’s winter, I eat because I saw a nice meal I’d like to replicate. I eat because I’m bored, I eat because it gives me energy, I eat because it keeps my brain healthy.

I have cellulite, I have stretchmarks, I have clothes that do not fit me anymore, I have bra’s that are too small. I have wobbles in my butt, my arms, my legs. I am healthy, I have good cholesterol levels and my blood pressure is perfect, I don’t smoke, so my heart is healthy as it can be.

On the average day, I consume far less crap than what I did when I was a teenager, I’m more aware of my body’s needs.

I haven’t exercised in a few months because I burnt out, because I had much more pressing concerns than trying to fit in a particular dress. In fact every time I’m getting into it I hurt myself, my body sabotages itself because it would rather deal with stress through art and writing than running. And here is the thing, for months I exercised and didn’t lose anything, my body refused to give in to a ridiculous ideal. I may have had more muscle in my arms but I didn’t lose any weight, and I still couldn’t fit into clothes I’d worn a few months before starting the damn regime.

So maybe my body is a blanket of comfort, but the thing is for years I’ve been looking in the mirror and saying “You’re ugly and disgusting” even though my boyfriend loves and touches and caresses every curve, wobble and stretchmark on my body, and tells me without any coaxing how Fucking sexy I am, and how much he loves my curves, and my ass.

When I was thin, it was my tiny breasts that got mocked, I got many nasty comments from girls saying I had crash dieted when in fact it took me months of hard exercise, exercise that strained me and a year of eating certain types of foods.

I was weight-shamed, not just fat-shamed, so although all this fat-shaming/thin-shaming goes around, I’ve been through both, and both viewpoints are ugly and stupid.

The reason I went from goth, to “normal”  for a short period was because I gained weight, and couldn’t justify being a fat girl in black, with big bustles, lace and ruffles, but I stopped caring about it and got myself back, only to realise how much I still hate my body, and each mark, dimple and pillow of it.

All our t.v/hollywood heroines are thin, some are unhealthy to stay that way, some are naturally that way.

Aishwarya, is told she is too fat and should have lost her baby weight by now because people like Victoria Beckham are tiny a few weeks after giving birth. Policing women’s bodies, is WRONG!

I’m tired of seeing these people being our so-called role models, while anyone who dares to take up space is considered “thinspo”, I’m not a before picture, I’m not an after picture, I’m a person.

One of my friends on FB put this status “Nothing tastes as good as thin feels”. I disagree, I’d much rather eat a delicious coffee vanilla cupcake I made lovingly than worry about how good or bad I’ll look to other people.

Another friend a while back said on FB that because she is thin, she can wear whatever she likes.

I don’t think they realise how much statements like that actually hurt people, even unintentionally. And maybe I’m the only one that gets hurt by these statements but I don’t think I am. These statements can hurt because some people have not learned to accept themselves for who they are and what they look like because they are constantly made to seem inferior to others by the media. I’m one of them.

When I was about 10/11 I was told by a boy that I didn’t have the legs for skirts, because I was fat. Well guess what I don’t wear pants. I hate wearing pants, they are freaking uncomfortable. I used to wear pants all the time when I was a child, in fact I dressed like a “boy” often, but even though I’m still considered “unfeminine” by some people I hate wearing pants. Maybe if they made pants that fit my fat ass and chunky thighs without having a gape in the back or being too tight in the front, I’d actually freaking wear them, maybe if they made pants for all body types, and they cost the same as pants for perfect bodies, then I’d wear them.

A boy in my high school said stretch marks were disgusting, but I’m guessing that if they actually lived a damn life, they’d have some marks on their body too…Scars, tattoos, freckles, blotches, stretchmarks, lines.

Another boy in my high school remarked on cellulite saying how hideous it was. I’m guessing this boy never saw many women’s bodies, real bodies, not t.v/movie/magazine/gaming bodies, but actual physical flesh and blood bodies. Bodies that appear in the media, are plasticised, airbrushed and photoshopped to the point where they are merely symbols for perfection, rather than representations of the actual person. I know many thin girls, and was even a thin girl once, with cellulite.

I’ve never seen a perfect person, only perfected images.

* Edit- As I highlighted in my comment section I am talking about monitoring food in order to be thin, and like an ideal image or to be considered sexy, not about monitoring food for health reasons or even ethical reasons. I’m a vegetarian after all. And when I say that I’m against cutting out food that you enjoy, it is about me being against people telling me and others that in order for us to be considered sexy we have to give up food that we love. I may not have been too clear on that when posting, so I hope that clarifies things a tad!

 

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17 thoughts on “The Other Side of the Broom- on being fat, and not giving an eff!

  1. Thank you for writing this. I love baking, I use it as an outlet for my creativity, but I always have the guilt once I’ve baked it because I worry that I should be making salads and fat free everything instead. I am really glad I am not alone.

    • I understand that guilt very well, I only hope that we can all stand together and realise that we are not all meant to look the same and have the same body sizes and shapes, and that we are allowed to enjoy baking and eating, as long as we are listening to our bodies, and are happy with who we are!

  2. As soon as I try to deny myself something I want it even more! I have a lot of friends who lost lots of weight on various self-punishing diets only to regain it all because after the novelty of buying new clothes and the compliments wore off they actually felt miserable and not “themselves”.
    We are biologically designed to store as much extra weight as possible for fallow periods so to actively lose weight is incredibly difficult and against our body’s instinct to hang-on to it!
    Fortunately the majority of cultures in the world appreciate larger women because this denotes good health, whereas excessive thinness suggests starvation!
    I really hope that one day we can all be judged for something other than our looks x

    • I also know many people who lost plenty of weight and gained it back even quicker, I was lucky I guess in that my weight gain was a gradual thing over around 5 years, and then when my Dad died, I really didn’t care about keeping lean anymore.

      It is very true that in many cultures larger women are considered healthier and wealthier, I remember seeing something like that on Oprah which made me smile 🙂

      I think the more globalised the world gets, the more influenced we are by cultures that are represented in the media, and that is unfortunate.

      I’ve seen things progress slightly with representation of different shapes, sizes and colours of people in the last few years, but then I’ve seen that blown to hell with more objectification and and plastification of all types of bodies, even male bodies.

      I don’t know if we will ever come a point where we will be judged on things other than our looks, but that really would be wonderful!

  3. Sorry if I offended you by posting that junk food challenge thing. It’s not only junk food I’m having to cut out. I have a lot of food allergies that constantly make me sick. I have to watch every thing I eat and read label on evvveerrryy thing which sucks, because of all those allergies. I too love to bake and cook. This isn’t a diet it’s a life style change for me for my health. I guess I could have explained myself when posting it. Again sorry it I offended.

    • You did not offend me, so don’t worry. It was the picture itself and what the picture represents that bothered me, not you wanting to participate within it.

      As I said, I was planning on making a post about fat-shaming last week, and had most of it drafted out already. The list and the tumblr tag itself “Fit-lean-and fucking-sexy” was a major button pusher for me, and mainly because I’ve seen and heard a number of fat-shaming comments from people over the last few weeks.

      It must be hard having to give up so much in your life on order to not get sick. Having to monitor your own diet for health reasons is not the same as monitoring your diet in order to be thin. Heart disease runs in my family, my grandad died of a heart attack, and my Oupa has angina and has to be careful with his heart as well. My father had high cholesterol and had to cut out red meat, my mother was also told to cut out red meat for cholesterol. For me cutting out meat was easy, I was 8 years old on my great grans farm, and refused to eat my friend the pig. That was an emotional and ethical choice for me, to cut out meat, but it has benefited my heart health greatly.

      I also know a few people with Diabetes, and people with wheat and gluten allergies, so I know that people cut out food for health reasons, and have to carefully monitor themselves, that is an entirely different set of issues than the tumblr image.

      I’m glad that you are taking charge of your health. Know that the issues I’m addressing in my blogpost are dealing with issues of weight and fat-shaming, and that that list and the Tumblr tag itself highlight those issues, and that it was in reply to the image itself and not you as a blogger.

      Thank you for reading, and I wish you the best of luck in your health pursuits!

      • I’m glad I didn’t offend. I didn’t care for the tumbler tag myself. I liked your post and thought it well written. I can agree on so many things you wrote about. It saddens me the way the media has played up through the years how women should look, dress, act, etc everything you wrote about. Its no wonder there are so many issues and self esteem problems. Cheers on your post. I agree with the meat thing. i can’t bring myself to eat it either. 😉

  4. I love, love, LOVE this!! I joined a gym primarily for Yoga classes and the instructor always says one thing in particular: “Honour your body. Let go of competition. Your pose will not be your neighbor’s pose, because your body is not your neighbor’s body.” I try to put this towards EVERYTHING in life. Whatever I do, I do while honouring my body. I feed it, I move it, and I love it. Your post reminded me so much of what my teacher says. Amazing read. >^-^<

    • That is beautiful. I’m constantly inundated with posts from a yoga group on FB, that keeps talking about weight loss this, and get thin and sexy that, which loses sight of what Yoga really is about! Thank you for sharing that!

    • If I lose weight, that would of course be awesome, but I think Yoga is more about being so *IN* your body during those moments. I spend the rest period in prayer and just concentrate on my body. FB groups are amazing motivators, but some go a bit overboard. Fit Chicks for one; they are motivational, but some are also quite cutting to those of us who are going for a different idea of fitness. Thin and sexy should not always follow each other!!!

      • Well put! I do what what my body tells me to do sometimes that includes walking, yoga and meditation, and losing weight is a possible benefit, but I do it because I’m motivated, not because of someone else’s ideal. When my body tells me in it’s not so subtle way to stop trying so hard I listen to that too…
        The Women’s Health South Africa FB group annoys me because they also just run overboard a bit too much.

        Sexiness has much more to do with a person’s state of mind and confidence than body size, but unfortunately people forget that!

    • Thank you for sharing! I agree, too many children are taught through media, and too many parents inflict their own insecurities onto their children, it is a vicious cycle and it must be stopped.

  5. Pingback: Who’s That FaT Girl in the Mirror? « curvyelviesays

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