Tuesday, September 20, 2011
A friend of mine posted this on Facebook, and given my blog theme of the day, I just *HAVE* to share it.
It comes from the website diannesylvan.com/?p=1358
If you can't make it to the website (I recommend it, some things are just BETTER with profanity), here is the content:
Ten Rules for Fat Girls
September 9th, 2011
Note: I debated with myself whether to allow comments on this post or not. But frankly, I donít care if you think Iím wrong. If you hate fat people, I donít want you here. Anti-fat bigotry and pro-diet propaganda will be deleted. I can do that because this is my sandbox and Iíve got the **** shovel. If you want to talk about how fabulous weight loss is youíve got a whole internet to do it in.
You may not know this if youíre new to my work, but: I wrote an entire book on body image and spirituality a few years ago. The whole subject is very important to me, but I havenít written much about it lately because my focus has been on so many other things. But then I got cable TV, and the old anger came a-flaring back up.
You see, Iím fat. 300 pounds of awesome from my double chin to my adorable toes. Thereís no concealing this fact. My fat is out there. It speaks. And it says ďI am lovable and worthy just like I am, and **** you if you disagree.Ē Iíve spent a lot of time and effort removing myself from body disparagement zones and have gotten comfortable with the idea that people can look like anything and itís all goodÖbut then I accidentally read the comments on someoneís blog, or I see some article that makes my blood boil, and I remember how many people out there live in a state of perpetual self-denial, self-denigration, and self-destruction just because of their fat.
It is to those fat girls, and to all of us who need a refresher course in body acceptance, that I offer these Ten Rules.
1. You are not obligated to be thin, healthy, or pretty.
Itís bad enough that our culture assigns moral value to foods: celery is ďgood,Ē donuts are ďbad.Ē Now, being healthy is itself considered a sign of your moral fortitude. Never mind the gap between the wealthy and poor and how that affects access to unprocessed food and the time and resources to exercise; never mind genetics or mental illness or stuff like, you know, character and behavior toward others. Thin people equal healthy people and that means good people.
Hereís a thought Iím sure will shock people: You donít owe anyone good health. You have sovereignty over your body and that means it is no oneís responsibility but your own.
Now, there are larger issues involved in our food supply such as workersí rights, animal rights, and environmental devastation to be considered, but I canít make other peopleís food choices for them, and I wouldnít allow anyone to make mine for me. Evangelizing about any kind of diet or ďhealth planĒ is presumptuous and unlikely to make you any friends; showing that the way you live makes you happy is a far more effective long-term persuasive technique.
Letís assume that being fat is morally reprehensible. Okay, fine. Letís assume itís the worst thing ever and every time a fat girl eats cake God kills a kitten. Whatever. How are shame and hatred going to fix that? How is discrimination and making people loathe themselves going to make them healthier? Obviously this doesnít work or the number of overweight people would be rapidly declining, wouldnít it, given how weíre treated? Has hate ever made anyone a better person?
Besides, how exactly does looking at someone tell you their state of health? There are millions of unhealthy thin people, but the automatic assumption is that theyíre healthier than I am just based on my size.
We also have this idea that our bodies are only worth their value to other people. Guess what? MY VALUE AS WOMAN IS NOT DEPENDENT ON WHETHER OR NOT MEN WANT TO **** ME.
Even in the Pagan community where youíd think body acceptance would be assumed, thereís been a rise in anti-fat prejudice lately with all these really weird ďyouíre using up too many resources! Mother Earth is sad that youíre fat!Ē ideas behind them. Of all the environmental issues that are mounting up today, thatís the one you have a conniption over? You really think my big **** is worse for the Earth than Big Oil? You need to sort out your priorities, Dances With Unicorns.
2. Donít talk **** about your body.
Aside from the fact that it makes conversations awkward, would you let a friend Ė or anyone Ė verbally abuse you? Then why allow yourself to do it?
Itís hard to follow this rule given that body disparagement is not only the norm, itís expected. A group of women is supposed to talk about diets and shoes and how much they freaking love yogurt. Iíd rather listen to my relatives talk about Obama than my coworkers talk about calorie counts. In such a situation you can:
A. Change the subject
B. Try to change peopleís minds by making body positive statements (only do this if you like to argue)
C. If youíre totally stuck, entertain yourself: mentally replace words like ďcarbsĒ with ďballs.Ē Itís way more fun to listen to people discuss good balls versus bad balls and whether or not theyíre getting enough balls.
Before making a statement about your body, ask yourself if youíd say the exact same thing to the kindest, gentlest friend you have. If the answer is yes, Iíd be surprised if you had any friends at all; youíre certainly no friend to yourself.
3. Donít talk **** about other peopleís bodies.
If you want the world to learn to love all sizes and shapes of women, you have to start with you. Itís so much fun to gossip and snipe, isnít it? Itís what women are supposed to do! We must tear each other down in order to eliminate competition for the oh-so-rare, elusive man-penis!
Iím not just talking about fat shaming, either. ďGo eat a sandwichĒ is as mean a thing to say as ďgo on a diet, fatty!Ē Just like people donít know anything about your health or history by the size of your body, you donít know what a thin person has dealt with in her life either. Everyoneís got problems Ė beautiful people are just as screwed up as everyone else.
Rules 2 and 3 are doubly important in front of young people. Donít let the cycle of shame continue with your daughter or niece or young friend. End it here and now.
4. Wear clothes that fit.
Viva la Revolucion!
It doesnít matter what your style is, what your budget is, or what you think of your fat; wearing too-tight or too-big clothes will make you uncomfortable, and that discomfort will show in how you carry yourself. Itís hard to be confident when youíre constantly yanking a wedgie.
Whatever you like to wear, find the size that fits you Ė you can move in it, sit down, bend over, walk, without having to stop and adjust every three steps. Iím not saying itís easy to find attractive comfy clothes when youíre fat Ė itís a nightmare. For all that fat people are supposedly taking over the world, we must all be walking around naked, because we canít find crap for clothes. Itís part of that whole ďwe will make you thin by making your fat life miserableĒ thing, which is ridiculous (and doesnít work). If you find an article of clothing that you love, get more than one if you can. I love v-neck black t-shirts, so when I found one in a nice Supima cotton on clearance I ordered five of them.
5. Demand better treatment from healthcare professionals.
Your doctor is prey to the same forces of fat-hatred that you are every single day. So itís likely that regardless of your state of health at some point a doctor is going to recommend you lose weight. Iíve had some doctors who went about it in far more acceptable ways than others Ė really itís more the attitude than anything else. Coming from a cardiologist, itís less ridiculous than coming from an allergist. If your doctor is generally responsive to your needs and doesnít force the issue itís not as big a problem as, say, one refusing to treat you for anything until youíre thinner.
(Yes, this happens. If you donít believe it, youíre probably not fat. The horror stories Iíve heard from fat people in the healthcare system are enough to make you sick.)
That claptrap about obese people being a strain on the economy is nonsense; cancer costs millions of dollars to research and treat but nobodyís suggesting we let cancer patients die to save money. Since a lot of fat folks are uninsured thanks to our crackerjack health care system, we donít get adequate care anyway. Itís just another smokescreen to keep people fighting amongst themselves while the rich line their pockets with the profits of our self-loathing.
Remember this, though: your doctor works for you. He is performing a service. There are thousands of doctors out there, so if yours is a jerk to you or tries to pull that ďall your problems would vanish if you lost weightĒ crap, fire his **** and go somewhere else.
Hereís a question to ask when your doctor tries to tell you your sore throat, aching back, or the axe sticking out of your skull are due to your weight. ďIf I were a thin person, what treatment would you prescribe?Ē
Seriously. Statistics show that weight loss fails over the long-term 95% of the time. How many conditions can doctors get away with prescribing something with only a 5% success rate? Yet dieting is considered a panacea. You know what else has a 5% success rate in treating disease? Bleeding someone to let the evil humours out.
You deserve respect and attention from your healthcare professionals regardless of your size. Donít accept abuse and condescension. And certainly donít pay for it.
6. Find a way to move.
Like I said, youíre not obligated to be healthy, but you probably want to be Ė thereís this weird thing we humans do where we donít want to die or feel like crap if we donít have to. While the evidence directly linking being fat with illness is sketchy at best (studies have shown that active overweight people actually live longer than thin sedentary people), youíd be hard pressed to find evidence that disagrees with the idea that regular movement is good for you. Our bodies werenít designed for our modern lifestyle, and it shows in how we feel. Exercise benefits body, mind, and emotions Ė and it can be fun, if you find the right kind.
Iím not talking about torturing yourself with some ďwork out until you vomitĒ **** (people do know that throwing up is a symptom of illness, not a badge of honor, right?); Iím talking about getting up and moving around a little every day. Even supersized folk have options. Walk around your house a few times. Put on your favorite song and dance to it. I know itís hard to leave the house and exercise when youíre fat Ė aside from any physical limitations you might have, people are ****. Despite the fact that weíre supposed to lose weight to be acceptable, weíre mocked when we are seen sweating. But even if you donít go to a gym (lord knows I donít) or attend classes, try to move more. Youíll feel better.
Just donít go into it expecting to lose weight. Move to enjoy life more. Move because dancing is fun or because you love playing touch football with your kids. Maybe youíll lose weight by being more active, maybe not Ė but youíll definitely feel better and have more fun.
7. Stand up for yourself.
Fat people are expected to just take whatever abuse is heaped on us because thereís something wrong with us that everyone Ė everyone Ė knows how to fix. Itís assumed that weíre stupid, as if our whole lives were lived in a cave full of cake and weíve just been waiting for a random stranger to deliver the Skinny Gospel.
ďOh my God. Calories in and calories out Ė thatís it? THATíS ALL THERE IS TO IT? OH MY SWEET JESUS IíM CURED! WHY HASNíT ANYONE EVER TOLD ME?Ē
You donít have to take it. You donít deserve it. You are a human being worthy of love and respect. Iíll keep saying that until you hear me.
Even if youíre not quick-witted enough to come up with a retort to every insult, you can get a lot of mileage out of making eye contact with an **** hole and saying, ďExcuse me?Ē Bullies of all kinds tend to wilt when challenged in front of others. Fix the spotlight on them and watch their power go poof. Powerful women scare the hell out of weak-minded dickweasels.
Iíve had more trouble with strangers than loved ones, but family and friends can be even harder to deal with because itís assumed they mean well and want the best for you. Itís also assumed, as Iíve said, that everyone knows whatís best for you but you.
ďAunt Gertrude, I appreciate that youíre concerned about my health, but I am healthy and am happy with my appearance. Please respect that I donít want to discuss my size.Ē
Often strangers will try to pass off their cruelty as concern. Donít be fooled. What theyíre saying isnít ďI care about your health, total stranger, for I am a concerned citizen.Ē itís ďI find your body unacceptable and you should feel ashamed because I am insecure.Ē
The popular idea in psychology is that fat people are ďshielding themselvesĒ from something using their bodies. Weíre pushing away our emotions, stuffing our pain, et cetera. That may be true for some people, but assuming itís true for every fat person is as irresponsible as assuming every physical ailment comes from fat.
Although in my case, my fat is a great insulator. It helps keep idiots out of my life.
8. Deal with your fat.
Donít pretend to be skinny if youíre not. Take up space. Itís okay. Youíre not fooling anyone by sucking in your gut anyway.
We tend to gloss over an important aspect of fatness: fat hygiene. That stupid stereotype about fat people being smelly comes from a few people who donít pay attention to the needs of their fat. Donít punish yourself for being fat by treating your body like garbage.
Wash your fat. More importantly, dry it. When you get out of the shower make sure youíre dry under your fat rolls and between your legs and breasts. Make sure youíre wiping your **** adequately. Do not fall victim to the perils of Swamp ****. There are unhygienic people in every size, but if youíve got more flesh you might need to spend more time attending to it. Thereís nothing wrong with that. Youíre saving yourself a lot of discomfort. If you get rashes from sweating in the heat, apply powder or try to find workout clothes designed to wick moisture. If I wear a skirt, which is rare, I put tights underneath it to avoid getting heat blisters on my thighs.
If your chair is too small, find a bigger one. If the seat at the movies is pinching you, put up the armrest and take up two spaces. Ask for a seatbelt extender on the plane. You can also get them for your car Ė they should be free from your dealership since theyíre safety equipment.
Touch yourself. Youíre not gross. If youíre doing yoga and your bellyís in your way, take hold of it and shift it. Iím serious. Most people donít think about that, but it can really help Ė touch your flesh. Itís yours. You grew it; you own it. Donít be afraid of your body. Often because we are heirs to such body shame, we avoid getting to know our flesh, so when something does go wrong we donít realize it until itís really serious.
9. There are worse things in the world than being fat.
Iíve heard quite a few thin women say things like, ďThank God Iím not fat. Iíd kill myself.Ē Or ďgetting fat would be the worst thing.Ē
Oh? Worse than child abuse, genocide, homophobia, or being allergic to chocolate? Worse than being an ****? Worse than treating people like crap because of how they look?
Is being fat worse than being an ignorant bigot? Worse than being a murderer? Worse than drowning kittens? Amebic dysentery? Losing a loved one? Losing a limb?
Hating yourself is pretty **** awful too. Trust me, itís way worse than being fat.
10. Donít expect to feel awesome about yourself every single day forever.
This one hit me hard after I had written an entire book on body image and, despite all my effort, still had periodic wars with the mirror. Even knowing every rule on this list, I still have days when I have a hard time loving myself.
Given the world we live in, itís really quite a revolutionary act to love yourself at all, even for a single hour. With the constant bombardment of not-good-enough messages out there itís bound to happen, so donít judge yourself for occasional negative body thoughts. Just gently bring yourself out of it and remember you are more than a number on a scale, more than a body at all.
If you challenge your assumptions, day by day you silence your inner critics. This takes time and constant effort, but the reward is a happier life and often a healthier one. Every journey has its pitfalls, though, and sometimes you fall flat on your face. Even full grown adults can still be toddlers.
This is where affirmations can be really useful. Look yourself in the eye every day and tell yourself you refuse to measure your life by your BMI. Tell yourself you are loved Ė because you are, I promise Ė and accepted exactly as you are no matter what, and that even if youíre not strong enough to believe it every day, itís still true, and that truth will be there when you can reach out and grasp it.
Remember you cannot leave a mark on the world without taking up space.
Again - this is not MY blog, but was taken from diannesylvan.com/?p=1358 - please check it out!!
Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Here is my plan to try NOT to lose weight:
I'm going to try NOT to lose weight -
-- I'm going to try to become stronger and healthier
-- I'm going to try to become happy, even with an obese body
I'm going to try NOT to be athlethic -
-- I'm going to try to be more active
-- I'm going to try to be more adventurous
I'm going to try NOT to diet -
-- I'm going to try fuel my body correctly
-- I'm going to try to give my body what it NEEDS, not what it WANTS
I'm going to try NOT to have a perfectly clean home -
-- I'm going to try to tidy up every day, and stay on top of chores
-- I'm going to try to invite people over, to show it off instead of be embarassed
I'm going to try NOT to save every penny -
-- I'm going to try to spend my money smarter, and save for what I want
-- I'm going to try to catch up on past debts so I can live in the PRESENT
I'm going to try NOT to look my very best every day -
-- I'm going to try to look better more often
-- I'm going to try to not wait until I'm skinny to dress sexy
I'm going to try NOT to finish my entire to-do list in a day or week -
-- I'm going to try to do a little bit more each day
-- I'm going to try to keep silly, petty things off my list in the first place
I'm going to try NOT to become everything I want to be -
-- I'm going to try to not be like anybody else, because I'm not
-- I'm going to try to love who I am now, just the way I am
Tuesday, September 20, 2011
If you were told today, right now, that you have a disease that makes losing or gaining weight and losing or gaining fat LITERALLY impossible -- that the weight you are NOW is the weight you will be FOREVER -- what would you do?
At first, do you think it would be fun and enjoyable?? Or would it be a curse??
-- Would you eat out all the time, knowing you won't gain weight? Would you skip the veggies you don't like, because the calories savings no longer matter?
...Or would you eat to fuel your body correctly? You know nutrition is important, but would you be able to give up on the rules alltogether? Since "rules no longer apply," would it be easier to eat healthy food because you WANT to, instead of because you HAVE to? Would you be able realize that the nasty foods, grease, fat, and sugar slow you down and make you tired and lethargic?
-- Would you stop exercising because you know it's no longer going to help you lose inches? Would it be easier to take the day off? I mean, why work out and get a sweaty if you won't see results??
...Or would you still have the motivation to work out, knowing your heart, lungs, vessels, and entire body still NEED that exercise? Would you start to realize you're loosing your stamina and flexibility? Would you realize you're tired all the time because your body is out of shape? Would you still exercise to stay strong, even though it meant you'd never lose a pants size?
-- Would you care for yourself any differently? Would you dress any differently? Would you wear comfortable clothes because you're stuck with the uncomfortable body you're in? Would you hate yourself and regret not losing weight earlier so you'd be stuck in a healthier body when the "disease" hit?
...Or would you learn to embrace the body you're in, no matter how big? Could you learn to work it? Would you figure out which clothes flaunt it best, instead of which clothes "hide" it best? Would you make it up and make it beautiful, and learn to be one with it, no matter what it looks like?
~ I'm kinda stuck on this one... I seem to not be happy with myself. I don't dress well, I hate exercising. I"ve never really been in shape or ate healthy, so every step is a learning step, and I don't really have any condition to "get back to."
~I can sometimes lose weight or maintain weight when I'm not "trying," but as soon as I "TRY" I seem to get stressed and either stall or gain weight. And I get stressed out. Why? I think because I'm try too hard for all-or-nothing, and I'm not doing it for the right reasons...
~ I keep waiting to live, until I'm skinnier or happier or prettier or richer. What a load of crock!! I'm me, even now! I'm 27, and not getting ANY younger! Why wait?? I have to learn to love myself and embrace who I am, because I may never get the chance to be skinny. JUST DO IT!!
~ A year from now, you'll wish you had started today! ~
Thursday, August 11, 2011
So, 10 days ago I posted a blog about the weddings coming up, and how I have to start doing SOME exercise, even if it's just walking or simply just moving more. What have I done so far? NOTHING. I just don't know why it's not as easy as it sounds. I'm at work until after midnight, by the time I get home it's usually about 1 a.m. Then, it's not uncommon for me to stay up until about 3 or 4 a.m. That's my schedule. The next morning, I'll set an alarm for anywhere from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., depending on what I have going on and what time I did finally shut lights out the night before.
Ok...to be fair, I have been getting more things done than usual during the day - I've put together and hosted a bridal shower and bachelorette party last weekend, I've been working on a financial situation and making a bunch of phone calls during the day, and though I'm not good at cleaning and would even say I've been doing THAT, I have been tidying the house a bit more than normal when I get home. Fine. A for effort in those areas.
But walking around the block? Nope. Walking on my breaks at work? Nope. Eating better? Not so much. So much as lifting an extra pound? Nadda.
When I'm *AT* work, boy do I make plans. I've even been recently motivated to pull out my 30 Day Shred video after seeing a blog about someone's amazing results. Ironically, I had 32 days from THAT point until the first wedding I'm in next month.
Today? 30 days on the dot. 30 days from today I have to be in a wedding, with fat arms that I *HATE* and a dress that currently doesn't zip up.
I've printed myself a 30-day checklist type of thing, and I'm HOPING and PLANNING (but, I've been planning yesterday and the day before, too) to do the first day of 30 Day Shred. Once I start, I'm hoping it'll be easier to keep rolling with it... that's what they say...
It's just strange... I know what I have to do. I know what I should do. I know that nobody can do it but me. I know that I have to just do it. But, I also know that I have the attention span of a kindergartner.
As soon as something seems more fun, or more productive, or if I'm just plain tired and ready for bed at 1:30 a.m. - the last thing I wanna do is move my fat, out of shape @$$!!! LOL
Really, Jen, it's not that hard. Quit your whining, grow up, and just do it already... or you'll go in time out!! ;)
Monday, August 01, 2011
This is me with my 2 best friends:
The one on the right is Erin. We've been friends since high school, and she lives in Southern Wisconsin, across the state from me. She's getting married in a small ceremony on September 9, 2011.
The one on the left is Memory. We've been friends since college, and she lives in Northern Wisconsin, about a mile away from me. She was married at the courthouse in December, but is having a religious church "official" ceremony on September 17, 2011.
I am touched and awed to have the honor as serving Maid of Honor to both of these amazing friends.
~The dilemma is this: I have had over a 1-year warning of being in a wedding in September 2011. I have had PLENTY of time to change my habits and change up my body, so I would have no regrets when these photos come back. I know that they will be my best friends whether I'm fat or not, but *I* want to be comfortable in my skin and confident, so I can be the best MOH and friend to these girls I can be. ~ It is now August and I haven't made a single pound of progress. That's good, I'm trying to stay positive; I have not really gained, I have been maintaining for years. BUT, I really, truly, honestly hate my body and I'm depressed even thinking about next month. I tried the dresses on last night:
This is the dress I'm wearing 1st - for Erin - on 09/09/2011:
(The back is NOT supposed to be gaping open, FYI)
This is the dress I'm wearing 2nd - for Memory - on 09/17/2011:
(This dress will have a brown layer under the skirt and brown sash)
~As of today, here are some stats:
Weight - 226.0
% Body Fat - 45.1%
Pounds Fat - 101.95
Excess Fat - 52.23
Lean Mass - 124.05
Rest. Met. Rate - 1711
Neck - 15.5
Arm - 18.0
Forearm - 11.75
Wrist - 7.0
Breasts - 48
Chest - 43
Waist - 42
Belly Btn - 50
Pelvis - 48.5
Thigh - 30.0
Calf - 18.5
Ankle - 9.5
*sigh* Sure looks like I have my work cut out for me in the next month, huh!??!!
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