I was feeling GREAT yesterday! I wore a shirt to church that was too tight for me a just few weeks ago, it was a beautiful day outside, and all was right in the world.
And then it happened.
I had just finished talking to a friend in the hallway, and as I turned to walk away, I heard one of her children exclaim,
“Mom! She’s FAAAAAT!”
I wasn’t particularly bothered by it at the time. I mean, I know how kids are–I have a few myself. They simply make observations, no malice involved. There was no ill intent in this child’s statement; she didn’t yell, “Hey Fatty!” or anything derogatory. It wasn’t like the little boy who exclaimed at the book sale one year, “Look at how fat she is! EWW!! She’s gross!!” (That kid was old enough to know about social graces, and should’ve known better. Had to refrain from sitting on the kid and smacking the parents. Seriously.)
By the end of the day, I was down. I felt blue and defeated. Just because of an offhand observation by a 2-5 year old. Upon reflection, I realized that it wasn’t so much the child’s comment threw me into a downward spiral; It was the sum total of all the comments that I’ve heard over and over again…from family members to total strangers. Whether said innocently or maliciously, I was simply tired of hearing it. I AM tired of hearing it. Do people think that telling me that I’m fat is going to surprise me, as if it’s something of which I am unaware? Trust me, I am fully and painfully aware of, at all times, the limitations placed on me because of my size. I don’t need reminding by anyone, it doesn’t need to be stated, it doesn’t help one iota to even mention it.
About a year ago, when I was working out pretty steadily, I was walking into the Y when I heard a little girl say to her mom, “Mama, what did that woman do to her body?” I wish I had turned around and answered that little girl. Not harshly at all–she really wanted to know. And I hope her mama told her. I hope she didn’t just say, “Shhh–don’t say that honey, it’s not nice.” I hope she told her all about how important it is to stay active, and eat your fruits and veggies, and not just eat because it tastes good and you want some more or because you’re sad/happy/angry. I hope she told her that just because I was bigger didn’t mean that I was any different from anyone else, that what mattered most when it came to people was what was on the inside, that someone can have a outwardly beautiful appearance and be unbearably ugly inside.
Despite that little rant, I am not particularly sensitive about my weight, or even the word “fat”. It’s simply an adjective. It’s the state I’m in now, not who I am. And I’m really okay with that, because I am doing what I can to move in the right direction.
And now, for some good news: I HAVE been feeling stronger, and not nearly as jiggly. =) This morning I started out with 10 minutes on the treadmill, hopped on the elliptical for 13, and then we started a circuit which consisted of four different sets of shoulder work, then back upstairs for four minutes of cardio, and back downstairs for the weightlifting, and then upstairs…you get the point. We did that three times total. When all was said and done, I ended up with 20 minutes on the treadmill and 25 on the elliptical. Not too shabby. Six weeks ago, I wouldn’t have even made it through the four minutes on the elliptical! So, that’s what I have to concentrate on. Children will continue to notice, people will continue to snicker and make comments; even when I have lost 100 or 150 pounds, I will still be considered fat. C’est la vie. I’m going to keep going anyway. Because this isn’t for them. It’s for me; it’s for my husband; it’s for my kids. It’s for the glory of God, and I am confident that He will see me through.