Did you know that fat is protective? In more than one way. Beyond keeping predators away, it has physical benefits. As pollutants and toxins are stored in fat in order to prevent them from entering the blood stream and damaging critical organs.
See, even in nature God is all about healing.
Society hates fat people more than almost any other. At least this American society.
There is a line in the song “I Still Remember” by Aha Gazelle that says, “Nobody likes the fat kid; that’s worse than the black kid.”
If you’re fat then you’re hated for not measuring up.
But then on the flip side, if you’re fat then you’re hated if you dare to be happy and do things. People hate that almost more than if you hide. Because it challenges and exposes them. It makes them question why they’re not out doing what they want to do. It takes away their excuses – and they HATE that.
So it has been a really big struggle for me. Hated constantly. Not even treated with basic respect. Dismissed so readily. Have to fight for almost every little damn thing.
I’m not saying the alternative is better or doesn’t deal with the same thing. I know. I’ve been on both sides. Either way, objectified. But not so easily dismissed and treated so poorly as when you’re fat.
The sad but true benefit is that it’s a great litmus test of people’s character. How they treat me. And trust me, 99% fail. I’ll encounter countless strangers and can confirm that the negative treatment towards fat people is prolific and unapologetic. Hardly anyone thinks twice. And there are no safety nets to fall back on. Socially, legally, etc. There is literally no one coming to save you or back you up if you are fat. Hardly ever. You are truly on your own.
Treatment by medical “professionals” is among the most traumatizing for me. I’ve had physicians give me medicine that I didn’t consent to. Lie and give me treatments I specifically rejected beforehand. After berating me for not bowing down to their professional opinion. Even though it is MY body. And my pains are categorically dismissed. Even when I passed out publicly – told it was just anxiety. Even when I was in a car accident – berated for insisting on getting checked out for pain that ended up being an injury that was so bad that it left me permanently disfigured. But no, I’m fat so apparently that’s the only thing that matters; it’s not possible that I could actually need help.
One extremely skinny family doctor told me that numbness in my wrist was from being overweight – but it was really an ergonomic work task related issue that was easily fixed by changing my posture and wearing a wrist brace.
It’s gotten so bad that I dread, absolutely dread going to get medical treatment. I am in the most vulnerable position and yet the medical professionals at all levels seem to think my fat is an excuse to honestly abuse me. I’m not able to relax at all in that environment. Even at my worst I have to be cognizant in order to advocate for myself.
And yes, I imagine this happens to others. But I know from experience that it is on a whole other level when you’re fat.
But even then, the character litmus test proves to work again. As it becomes crystal clear who entered the medical field for money. Versus those that actually care and want to help.
It might sound like I’m switching gears, but this relates to the whole fat thing: I was thinking about how I needed to believe that some people loved me until I was able to start loving myself. Really loving myself.
It was only then that the scales were washed from my eyes and I was able to see how your love was not enough. Maybe it wasn’t even love at all.
But I needed to believe so in order to survive. God let me have that delusion as long as it benefited me more than it hurt me. Until I was strong enough to face the truth.
It works kinda like this:
I thought you loved me,
which over time helped me love myself,
which then allowed me to see some of your actions differently,
which then made me realize you were not loving me,
which was REALLY difficult to face,
and forced me to choose myself over you,
which REALLY sucked but I had to do it.
And yet as I let you go, I feel myself reentering my body more and more. Each time I take that step forward towards myself. For myself. Which overall is a really good thing, even if the process of doing so is incredibly painful and rife with sadness, grief, and anger.
And as I reenter my body, I become intensely aware of my physical pains, among many others. I feel so alive, but also in a tremendous amount of pain. And that’s okay. At least it motivates. Wakes me up. Pushes me forward.
My pain won’t go away like before. As I keep cleaning up my life, the pains become more obvious and ignoring them, burying them is not an option anymore. I don’t want to go back and live that way again.
So although I’d like to, and have tried for decades, to lose the weight by focusing only on the physical, it doesn’t work for me.
Instead, I am realizing that not only is my physical body holding onto this weight in order to protect my physical heart. But also this weight has insulated me from the social world. Because I wasn’t yet ready.
And now that I am strong enough, I have to deal with all the social, spiritual, mental, emotional stuff before my body will release the physical fat that it is using for protection. And it’s not just relationships with others. Maybe more so it is the relationship with myself.
Like for example, being organized. That’s a gift I give myself for my own well-being. And I dare you to try to focus on improving your physical health while trying to ignore chaos in your life. Maybe you, but I couldn’t do it. And it’s not so much a matter of will. I have the will to do all sorts of things. But for me when my worlds fell apart over the past few years, I lost my organized life due to only having the energy for essential survival tasks. Until I processed the grief enough, I couldn’t really force myself to get back to everything I needed and wanted to do. But once I finally stopped trying to muscle my way through and instead faced all that happened and is happening, only then was I able to truly pivot back to picking up the pieces. And as I do that, I reenter my body and am able to make decisions that make me feel better physically.
Religious people try to dismiss me and shame me back into the hell I escaped by quoting the translation that is the Bible verse that says in the “end days” people will be “lovers of self”. As if taking care of the blessings God has given us is somehow narcissistic versus an expression of gratitude. Or even worship.
They cherry-pick that translation completely out of context in my opinion. There are so many arguments against how they weaponize it. But my first thought is what do you think it means then when Jesus says to love others as we LOVE OURSELVES? Who do you give more power to? Jesus or…?
And despite you using the Bible as the ultimate judge that somehow gives you the task of defeating me, who do you think Jesus has more of an issue with? Me who is minding my own business as I work really hard to take care of all that has been given to me? Or you who somehow has time to shame me?
As Young M.A says, “The way these n****s hate, I hope they get a check for it… I hope you pay your bills before you pay attention… how you a hatin’ ass n***a ’bout to get evicted?”