Tuesday, June 28, 2016

I Love Me...All of Me

I'm fat. It's true. I'm not looking for comments like, "Oh you're not fat." I am. I want to take that word back. When we say that now, it has a negative connotation. I'm tired of that. I'm done. I'm fat. I'm working on loving my body just the way it is...by reading a book. I confess I'm reading the book on my Kindle app because I was embarrassed about the title. It's called, "Things No One Will Tell Fat Girls" and it's written by Jes Baker.

Her mission is self-love...for all. I've highlighted so many lines, I can't possibly share them all, but here are some of my favorites:

"Our bodies are our physical bookmarks that hold space for us in the world. Our bodies are magnificent houses for everything else that we are. Our bodies are a part of us, just as our kindness, talents, and passion are a part of us." (p.10) 

"Your size is irrelevant to your ability to find fulfillment, purpose, love, a sense of worthiness..." (p.17)

"We can't treat our minds and bodies well until we learn to love them...I'm loving myself. Just the way I am. Right now. And I am happy." (p.21)

She talks about all of the things fat people avoid because of being fat. One summer, I avoided the pool and swimming, which is my very favorite thing to do, because I felt like I was too fat. Shame kept me away. I avoid sleeveless shirts because of jiggly arms. I pose carefully for pictures, so you don't see my double chin. I spend too much time wasted on this madness. And it's not just me! I can't go a day without hearing someone bemoan the fact that they are "too fat" or they must "go on a diet" or something like that. 

And for those of you thinking about health, she quotes many studies and write, "It's actually a documented fact that being fat isn't an indicator of being unhealthy, and being thin is no assurance of good health." (p. 65) And she goes on to say that even if it is unhealthy, do fat people deserve shame for that? "I believe in glorifying all bodies. All of them. Because every single person in the entire world deserves to feel good about and love themselves. It's that simple. Fat and thin, healthy and unhealthy." 

Here is a sobering statistic, "In a survey of girls nine and ten years old, 40% have tried to lose weight." (p.14) Here's one more, "91% of women are unhappy with their bodies and resort to dieting." (p.14)

I'm done hiding. 
I'm done being ashamed. 

I'm fat.

I'm beautiful.
I'm kind.
I'm smart.
I deserve to be loved.
I deserve to be treated respectfully...and from now on, I demand it.

This post is about saying it out loud. It's about owning who I am and loving who I am. It's about doing it for all of those kids who hear us and think they aren't good enough as they are. 
 
Thank you to the Two Writing Teachers for this amazing platform to write and share writing! What a wonderful community you've created! I'm honored to be part of it. Join us at Two Writing Teachers.


21 comments:

  1. I so love this! This weight thing wraps around women in a TRULY unhealthy way no matter our size. This was experienced recently with apologies and discussions in line for ice cream 3 days in a row with conference friends. It was the women not the men. FINALLY in my own life I am disreguarding these talks as the ONLY universal measure of us. Have ice cream, don't have ice cream it does not reflect the most important part of who we are. I have internalized so much of what you are saying as a fatter woman and a less fat woman. I am on a weight loss journey for health reasons but it is different this time. It is not about " good or bad" it is a choice. And so...that is not the most important measure of me. Thank you for the brave writing today!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hmm- sounds like a book I may need. I am trying to make my peace with my body, but... I love your determination and the quotes you chose. Your last line: "It's about doing it for all of those kids who hear us and think they aren't good enough as they are," really resonated with me.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Very brave post today! A much needed post today!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Your piece is important for everyone. Cheers to you.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Such brave and true words today, Michelle. They will ring true with many of us.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Bravo Michelle! Truly accepting our self for who we are on the outside goes a long way on the inside and mind games we engage in. Love yourself, that is what I am working on too.

    ReplyDelete
  7. It's wonderful when we find words with sharing...great books make that possible! Thank you so much for sharing these important words today!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Well said! So much of what you said connected to this podcast I heard from "This American Life": http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/589/tell-me-im-fat And I love your feeling of empowerment and self affirmation, Michelle.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Oh my gosh Michelle. I heard the podcast Tara mentioned last weekend It was powerful, leading me to laughs, tears and pain. You are beautiful and smart. Sending you love,

    ReplyDelete
  10. NPR's This American Life podcast last week had a guest on who own's her fatness. You might enjoy listening to it, I did.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Michelle, this is amazing! You are doing such a service to your kids at an age they need modeling. I imagine this was cathartic for you. You are inspiring. Truly!

    ReplyDelete
  12. This American Life spoke loud to me last week, and now you are confirming the stance, too, Michelle. We've all grown up listening/watching how people, especially women, look, instead of considering who they are inside, how they act, much more important. I so want my grandchildren to have it different, but even the grand-girls, especially Ingrid at 7, already knows the score, wants to "look" right. I'm proud of you for sharing your pride loudly. And FYI, now that I'm older, there is a part of me that is in that corridor of the body reacting differently & there is little to do about it. Thus I am always wondering how I look. Thanks much for the inspiration!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Bravo!! I loved meeting you in real life at All Write. You exude love, enthusiasm for life, intelligence, and so much more. You are beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I applaud the way you put yourself out there. Society has a way of making us think we have to be this or that in order to be perfect. It's very overwhelming. Let happiness find the way and it looks like you're doing that!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Powerful words. And ones I'm glad I heard. Thank you for sharing - especially those wonderful, liberating quotes.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Michelle, loving ourselves is a very important topic that your post proclaimed here today. Thank you for providing a foundation for many to stand on. There is disconnect in what we can believe to be true and what is proclaimed (through advertisements) by a world that still depicts models as beauties to behold. I saw my first ad yesterday of a model who had a prosthetic leg. I stopped to ponder the impact that would have on others.

    ReplyDelete
  17. I want women everywhere to read this. The messages we send the younger girls (and boys) in our lives are ensuring that body issues will continue for generations. It shouldn't be this hard for us to learn to love ourselves. Thank you, thank you, thank you for this piece of powerful writing.

    ReplyDelete
  18. You are honest and brave and true and I admire your thinking and your writing Michelle.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Michelle,
    What a powerful post. As a mom of two daughters, I have been aware a long time of how the world sends damaging body image messages. As a mom I've always tried to watch my own language about myself as I worry that it will translate to my daughters. Thank you for reminding us to learn to love who we are.

    Cathy

    ReplyDelete
  20. Brave and honest post. Admirable.

    ReplyDelete

Please share your thoughts. I love comments!