When I was in 8th grade a boy told me “I should be anorexic.” Needless to say, I have never been able to forget that. In 5th grade, I got into a fight with my best friend, at the time, and she told someone “I’ve finally gotten 200 pounds off my back because that’s probably how much she weighs.” I have never been able to forget that either.
The most uncomfortable subject for me to talk about is weight. It’s right above sex and going to the gynecologist. I try to avoid the topic at all costs even when my Mom is pointing out how skinny that girl is or how that girl over there could stand to lose a little. The first thing my Mom notices about a person is their weight. Honestly, it’s the first thing that comes to my mind as well. Unlike me, my mom is vocal about it. I try to conceal it in an attempt to convince myself that I’m not this weight obsessed person. It never occurred to me that not everyone’s first thought about a person was their weight until recently. My parents and I frequently attend shows featuring celebrities we’ve seen on TV. My Dad comments on the person’s personality. Were they nice or intelligent or downright weird? While my Mom takes a different approach, “Wow she is so skinny! Look at her bones! The camera adds weight, sure she’s skinny on TV, but this is ridiculous!” I realized the difference between my Mom’s comments and my Dad’s. My Mom’s comments always bothered me. Even though I never voice it those thoughts about weight come to my mind as well. I try to push those thoughts away and focus on more substantial thoughts about a person. Recently I told my Mom that the way she brought up weight first bothered me and she hadn’t even noticed she’d been doing it.
Almost all my friends throughout my life have been thin, I don’t know how it happened but it did. About half of those thin friends think they’re not thin and love to complain about it like they’re training for the Fat Complaining Olympics or something. Fat people don’t complain that they’re fat to other people; skinny people complain that they’re fat to other people to get the reassurance that they are indeed not fat at all. It drives me crazy. “Jackie, do I look fat in this?” “Jackie, look at my stomach, it’s so pudgy!” My philosophy is to never mention to someone; that I feel fat, that I think I look fat or anything that links me in any way with the word fat. If I don’t say it, people won’t think it and I’ll be able to convince them that I’m actually a skinny, confident person. Truthfully, I’m scared, I’m scared that if I ask someone if I look fat they’ll say yes and I won’t be able to ever feel comfortable in my skin again, but that’s beside the point.
I’ve never been the skinny girl. I was never the girl you saw and thought “god, eat something” or “where does she put it all, she’s so lucky.” But I was also never the girl who had to shop in the plus sized section or the girl told by doctors to lose weight. I’m the somewhere in-between girl which makes it even worse. Am I fat or am I thin? Please do not answer that!