My close friends say that I am at my funniest when I’m angry. I think that sometimes I am like a fat Lewis Black. The thing is, I don’t feel funny right now. I just hate everything.
I belong to a few fat groups on Facebook and usually it is a place for us to dish about fatphobic stuff we see, but sometimes we share personal stories. A fellow member shared this screenshot from a public news post that they commented on and a random stranger replied. (The fellow member gave me permission to share this image.)
I would say that this is shocking, but of course it is not. The internet is full of trolls and they can say whatever they want when hidden behind their screen. The reality is that these trolls are everywhere though, and they behave this way in public too.
Here’s the thing: I am not feeling great this week. My body is doing some weird shit and I don’t know if it’s lingering effects of the last month from the meds that made me worse, or if it’s the fact that I had the IUD removed and so my body is gearing up for its first period in over 2 years. I am in more pain than usual, my stomach is a wreck, my ankles are like three times their normal size, and yes, we all know that I sweat like a rainstorm, but it’s worse this week.
I stumbled on a fat friendly yoga instructor that lives nearby. I am going to pay for a private session once I get my first check. I hope that learning some new stretches can help improve my back and hip issues, but am even more pumped to hang out with a fat positive person that is fighting society’s idea of fat folks’ capabilities.
I started my new job this week. No matter how confident someone is, meeting new people and trying to impress them while in unfamiliar areas can really pump up the anxiety. I work in Beverly Hills now and I can safely say that so far I am the fattest person here. I had to speak up yesterday and say that the chair wasn’t working for my giant ass and so I stood during a meeting. The two women laughed because I made it funny, as us fat folks are trained to do, but I’m happy that I said something. I am also mad that the chairs in the conference room and lunch room are made for tiny bodies.
Everyone has been nice so far and yet I have caught a few of the (white) women looking me up and down – judging my swollen ankles. And so I sweat a little more.
I can guarantee you that I have never been a skinny person and there is not one hidden inside of me.
Yesterday I met with a department researching diet and exercise. They have several clinical trials for the keto diet. I am interested to see the results of these trials, and yet I feel like they are expecting me to ask if I can participate. Several times I heard, “we have staff members here participating in the healthy patient trials too!” I know they are wanting me to say, “oh can I please sign up!” because the thing is, everybody thinks fat folks need help changing. Surely there is a skinny person inside of my large body just begging to be freed.
It’s taken me almost 39 years to realize that the way that society views and treats us is wrong, and that we are not the bad ones.
And yet it’s only taken seconds to realize that it will never change.