Size 20, Healthy and Happy

Jesus fuck! I am enough, just as I fucking am right this second: with my pink slippers, cut off t-shirt and black stockings, slouching over the desk, angrily writing this:

I’m tired of having to explain to all kinds of well-intentioned people that I am happy as I am, that I don’t need or want to change my lifestyle, and that whatever size I am, whatever I eat and whenever I exercise is my fucking choice — these are all my decisions and for all that’s holy, I shouldn’t be required to explain myself to anyone.

People see that I’m overweight and that’s almost always enough for them to want me to change my life, like my life is theirs to do as they see fit. People assume I must be filling my mouth with sugary, greasy foods, and they assume that I must be so lazy, sitting on my fat ass all day long, and of course, they also assume I must be unhealthy because if I’m a size 20 I might be diseased and unhappy as fuck, and if I’m not, then I ought to be! How dare I not want to be a size 2? What is wrong with me for looking in the mirror and actually liking what I see?

I’ve been overweight ever since I can remember. When I was 11 years old, my grandmother who was obsessed with my weight had my thyroid checked and having found out that my thyroid was just fine, and that my only medical problem was a hormonal imbalance, she decided I should start taking weight loss pills and had me on a calorie deficit diet for almost six months. She wanted me to be as thin as she was when she was young.

I remember hating the foods she wanted me to eat, and I remember refusing to eat for days. I was at a point where I slept most of the day because my body was so exhausted, and then she would wake me up and force feed me boiled fish. I remember her force feeding me crap I didn’t want to eat, like boiled cauliflower and celery, and I remember throwing it all up and crying, begging her to leave me alone.

This went on for a very long time, and to my grandmother’s delight, I did lose all the extra weight, but I was never as thin as she wanted me to be.

Then, after she put me off the diet and the pills, I gained all the weight back and then some more. Because neither she nor the supposed doctor that was endorsing all of this, had no idea about losing weight in a healthy way or keeping that weight off. Needless to say she was disappointed as fuck when I gained the weight back.

I grew up and although she had tried to get me to diet again, I didn’t do it. But, having been bullied about my weight for such a long time in elementary school, I tried all sorts of diets on and off, wanting to lose weight so that the kids would leave me alone. In my teenage years, the bullying did stop, but I wanted boys to like me so I started starving myself, since I knew by now that diets weren’t going to work for me. I was constantly losing weight and then gaining it back.

By the time I got to college I had decided to stop trying to lose weight.

Almost all my life, I hated myself for being fat and I hated myself for not stopping being fat. Most of my life, I was afraid to even admit that I was fat; I knew I was, but I avoided saying it out loud, in front of people because I was scared of being treated differently, of being considered less than because of it. It’s stupid of course — people can see that you’re fat, there’s no need for you to actually say it. But only recently I came to accept myself for what I always was and for what I’m happy to be all my life: a fat woman.

I’m 27 years old now and I’m a size 20 self-sufficient happy, beautiful woman.

But society can’t have size 20 self-sufficient happy, beautiful women roaming around. Oh, hell, no. If you’re fat, you have to be unhappy, otherwise how else would thin people’s image of themselves be validated? We must convince all fat people to start exercising and diet so that they, too, be as thin and unhappy as we are — but, remember that all of it, it’s for their own health!

All my adult life, whenever I had health issues and went in for a check-up, the first thing doctors would say would be that I was obese and that I had to lose weight. It didn’t really matter if my weight was a factor in the health problem I was reporting to them, it really is like they’re somehow programmed to put everything on surplus weight whenever they see it. Which is why I always dreaded going to the doctors, the only time I’d actually go was when shit hit the fan and I was either in a lot of pain or scared for my life. Once, I went to the neurologist about a serious episode of migraine combined with vision problems and the doctor sent me home with a prescription for aspirin and a recommendation to see a nutritionist about my weight problem. *wink wink*

Another funny thing is that female doctors are more inclined to put everything on extra weight than male doctors. Makes you think, doesn’t it? It should.

The way society sees fat people and the way people are encouraged to treat overweight people is fucking working against us [fat people]. Society keeps saying that obese people should lose weight and be healthy, but real health issues are being ignored by medical personnel and attributed to the fat, instead of being properly investigated and treated.

Recently, I went to the doctors’ office for my hormonal imbalance and although my hormonal imbalance might be causing the weight gain, instead of treating the problem, the doctor suggested I deal with the symptom first and lose weight. This had made me so angry.

When I told the doctor that I wasn’t going to go on a diet, she went on trying to convince me that exercising leads to a metabolism change (which by all intent and purposes, exercise alone does not do that to anyone) to which I replied I do not have the required time for the hardcore physical training needed for any amount of significant weight loss.

But she was resilient, this one. It was as if her life depended on convincing me that I had to stop being fat! She then went for the scare tactics, talking about diabetes and other weight-related health issues. I told her I don’t have diabetes and that I’m actually quite healthy. She didn’t care about that, so she explained to me that these possible threats are in the future, like 20 to 30 years from now. I’d be 50-something by then… Bottom line is that this doctor was suggesting that although I was healthy and I had no illnesses caused by my weight, I should make a lifestyle change I didn’t want on the off-chance I might get diabetes when I’m 50.

Right. The conversation finally ended when I told her that I was not interested in losing any weight, at all. After that, we actually talked about treating my hormone issues.

The point is, people, we should all stop assuming that fat people are unhappy or unhealthy. Although most of us, fat people are neither unhappy nor unhealthy, we fucking will be because of you.

For the love of all that’s beautiful in this world, please, stop trying to make us feel like we’re less than human beings. And a word out to all the doctors out there, please, treat fat people as you would any other person; don’t immediately assume that everything they’re complaining about is caused by their weight. Some shit might be, other shit, on the other hand, might not. Don’t play with people’s lives just because you’re not comfortable with their size.