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To Be Comfortable

May 6, 2015

I’ve thought about this for awhile and for whatever reason admitting my weight has never been an easy thing for me. Oh, sure I can admit it to myself and call myself all sorts of degrading names like fat-ass and…well, really, there’s not much else that’s needed. So with this entry I’m going to finally admit it: I weigh 348.4 at present and that’s due to my weight loss, I was up at 360 at one point and then lost some weight and got back up to 358.. Yep. That big. Weight loss has always been a constant struggle for me as I realize it is a problem but I also felt helpless to do much about it.

Like I said in my first weight loss entry: I seem to gain weight seemingly by breathing. I know that’s not the case, but that’s how it feels and has felt all my life. I didn’t weigh this much originally. Originally I weighed 275 my sophomore year of high school and managed to beat my weight down to 220. Everyone who has seen my older pictures can tell the big difference. After graduation it’s been a slow, yet steady climb to where I am now. Even in college I only ever weighed about 285, but when I started edging toward my last year I started stress eating like crazy. Then I got gastritis and acid reflux and a hiatal hernia.

When I was working on being rid of the gastritis I got down to 299 again aaand feeling good I ballooned back up very steadily to where I am now–again. It’s embarrassing and I hate it but I figured as long as I kept it to myself it only affected me and it only bothered me. I thought I could live with that, but nope. I did the same thing I’ve been doing for years: I shamed myself into silence. And you’re probably saying, “It’s only weight,” and that’s true. It is only weight, but think about this: that number affects how people see you. They don’t see you, they see your weight. They see someone who can’t control their actions. Or someone who repulses them. Or any number of things.

A fat person is still an acceptable target for everyone’s ire and it’s especially that way because being fat is a choice, but it also isn’t. You do choose what to put in your body, but anyone who is losing weight, currently fat and wanting to lose weight, or used to be fat and has lost weight, knows that weight issues are anything but a cut and dry issue. Disregarding the economics issue of it because, while that does factor into it it’s also besides the point for now. You could easily eat shit foods from McDonald’s and such and still lose weight if you’re smart about it.

First there’s the stigma: If you’re like me and you gained your weight at a slow rate then it sort of does sneak up on you. By 7th grade I was already a big kid, but not as big as I am now. The kids would say to ‘sit’ on someone or some such like I was a monster. I tended to ignore them, but I was self-aware enough to know something wasn’t right. Girls don’t take a second look at you because of your weight, your peers treat you like you’re a freak that’s there for their amusement. And you get the look that signifies, “I would take you more seriously if you weren’t so big,” The worst part of it is people that try to be sympathetic by using your weight as a qualifier, “You’re such a good person, but you’d be better if ____,” no one ever puts it like that, but that usually was the subtext of most of my conversations growing up.

And being called ‘sweet’. I had a stigma against that word myself for years because it always signified the kiss of death for any chance of any kind of relationship beyond being a friend. Which leads me to my next point: How the stigma makes you feel about yourself. For me the stigma shamed me into silence and still does. I still feel like I can’t be completely honest with anyone because I always feel like they’ll judge me based on my weight. Friends? Sure, I have them and have had them throughout my life, but there’s always been a barrier included: don’t discuss anything too serious or they’ll hate you, they won’t be your friend, and hey! You’re fat so be thankful for the little bit of a social life that you do have.

I never did think of food as a constant friend, though, thankfully. So this current round of weight loss has been easy to ignore that aspect of this, but still..I know some aren’t that lucky. For me, food has always just been there. If I’m bored I eat. If I celebrate, I eat. If I’m hungry, I eat. If I go to a social gathering, I eat. etc. Which goes into my third point: How society makes you feel about yourself: I haven’t bought clothes in person since at least 2004. Why? Because I can’t find my size anywhere. And the sizes I do find never fit completely right. Go to a restaurant? Heh…yay! You get to eat and feel like you’re being squeezed by a tiny person. Go to a movie theater? Haha…you’re precious.

The worst experience I’ve had, though, as a big person has been at an Orioles game. Those seats are fucking uncomfortable so I ended up standing for the last half of the game. I know it’s a bit like asking the world to cater to me! And only me! But, like being a lefty, society isn’t really too keen on catering to fat people unless they have to. Which is met by more grumbling people about things being too big, etc. The thing is that you lose weight by being able to go out and do things but the other thing is: I don’t feel like going out and doing things because I know I’m going to be uncomfortable no matter where I go. This past weekend I went to Outback to celebrate my father’s birthday belatedly and they stuck us in one of those booths that was glued to the wall.

So, it’s with all of this in mind that goes through my head every day and every time I go out in public that…yeah, I don’t like admitting how much I weigh, I can’t be completely honest with people–even people I know who would have no problem with me regardless of my size. I can’t date certain people because I know they’d likely reject me, and my clothes don’t fit right and I can’t really shop anywhere in person except specialty stores and I don’t feel like re-enacting a prison rape scene with my wallet.

I also don’t blame other fat people for their own issues, either. I think when society views you as some sort of monster, your peers don’t completely like you, and your society tells you you’re not right…yeah, it’s no wonder they’re fucked up as well. It just breeds depression and anxiety issues. And don’t get me wrong: I realize my weight is a problem. I realize it’s doing me no good to be this size, but up until fairly recently and admitting my weight to more people than just my family…I really felt alone, like in the middle of the ocean without any help forthcoming, alone.

I’m planning to fight my hardest now and to keep pushing myself to get rid of this burden that’s held me back most of my life and made me feel so awful about myself. Thank you as well to everyone that bothers to make it to this point, I realize this is a really long entry.

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