At Buffalo Wild Wings, I ordered lots of food. Hey, I was super hungry. Plus, I have a tendency to order too much then complain about being too full halfway in. Yes, annoying. I know. I’m working on my indecisiveness.
Anyhow, after the waiter leaves, I said to my guy friend playfully, “OMG. I’ve ordered half the menu. I’m soooo fat.”
His eyes swelled with fear then shock. If he had pearls, he probably would’ve clutched them.
At first, I thought I had lipstick on my teeth. “What?” I croaked.
“You. Are. Not. FAT!”
I rolled my eyes. “Boy, bye. I am fat.”
“No.” He shook his head. “You are curvy. Trust me, I know fat. You’re just thick.”
“I’m fat. I’m obese. I’m overweight. It’s fine.”
What was interesting was that the ‘F’ word for him was so negative, so vile that he couldn’t possibly equate that nasty attribute to me. He got an A for effort though. Haha. But like him, so many other men and women avoid the word ‘fat’ or if they do use it, it’s become one of the main cuss words.
I’m not even going to lie. In my adolescence and early 20’s, I was once one of those people that if someone called me fat, I’d melt and dissolve into the wind. No coming back from it. I’d go over it a million times in my head. Fat. Fattie. You’re FAT! Why the fuck are you still fat? Be skinny. Skinny is better. Skinny is acceptable. You will be great when you are skinny.
Funny thing is that when I did have an eating disorder and got ‘skinny’, I was the unhappiest I’d ever been in life. But, everyone else seemed to dote on the fact that I’d lost so much weight so fast and blah, blah, blah.
Why do we glorify thinness but bash fatness? And I know the internet trolls with their Google degrees are going to come out of their troll lairs with the following argument: fat acceptance glorifies obesity and health problems.
Firstly, I welcome them with the real ‘F’ word. After that, my rebuttal consists of not only fat people have health issues. I’ve been fat mostly all of my life, and I’ve had no major health problems. I have fat and skinny friends with health issues. Good or bad health doesn’t discriminate like we do. And if I did have bad health from being fat, that still has nothing to do with you because you aren’t me nor do you pay my medical bills.
Back to our scheduled program…
So why am I talking about this? In an interview, I was asked about the word ‘fat’. Why is it such a negative word? Why do most girls and women cringe and melt when they are called it? And most importantly, when I decided to reclaim it.
I reclaimed the word when I started having open conversations about body acceptance with other body positive activists in the community. The conversations were real and enlightening. These women (and men) were not only fat but they were other things, too. They were fat and business savvy. They were fat and confident. They were fat and stylish. They were fat and athletic. They were fat and sexual.
They smashed the fat stereotypes in half and I set out to do the same.
Let’s say this at least eight times: Fat isn’t a bad word. Stop making it that way. It’s starts with you. It’s an adjective, people. Just like any other adjective. Sometimes, we’ve got to take a look at ourselves and stop being so freakin’ sensitive. So what if your boyfriend calls you fat. Do what I do and say, “Yes, I know. Anything else you want to point out Captain Obvious?”
If you are obese, overweight, curvy, or thick, 9 times out of 10 you are probably fat. And that’s ok. And if it’s not ok, then change it. Simple as that. But let’s not wallow in the fact that our bodies are shaped differently or the scale gives us a number that isn’t ‘acceptable’ to society’s standards.
Why not start living right now? Don’t let a couple pounds deter you from enjoying what life has to offer. Your body is good so be good to your body.
You’ve only got one.