Being Part of the Team

I’ve been thinking about this since Friday night, when I realized I was on the fatosphere feed.

It was kind of funny… fatfu had emailed me to let me know that she had added me, and said to let her know if I didn’t want to be on it.  Of course I have absolutely NO problem with being on it, but I didn’t check my email until AFTER my post had already showed up on the feed.  I was all…. wha?  Wait… um… that’s MY post!  How did MY post get on the feed? Oh my god!  I’m on the feed! (My daughter was in the room and thought it friggin’ hilarious.)  I kind of freaked out for a minute there.  Not a bad freak-out, mind you… but a freak-out all the same.  Once I calmed down a bit, that’s when it occurred to me that there might be something waiting for me in my inbox, and sure ’nuff… there it was.

Now I’m going to show y’all just how much of a dork I am.  I found it exciting that I’ve been added to the feed.  After all, there are many people that I admire and like whose posts make it on the feed.  Being lumped into the same group as these men and women that I enjoy reading, that make me think, and have made such a big impact on my life in the last 8 months?  How is this a bad thing?

But then I started to really think about what this means.  Because while there’s no specific team leader, no specific set of goals that absolutely everyone is striving for (that’s not to say that nobody has specific goals, just that there’s no universal set that everyone in the fatosphere have voted and agreed upon), I still view it as a “team effort.”  Everyone involved in the fatosphere (and quite a few not directly involved in it) are striving for the same generalized concepts.  Helping people to see that they don’t have to let their weight/size direct their life, and to get the public-at-large to view us as people first, fat people second.

And see, that’s what has made such a big impact on my life, personally.  Finding the fatosphere snapped me out of The Fantasy of Being Thin.  It helped me to see that accepting myself the way I am isn’t such a crazy idea after all.  (I was really struggling with this one, and now I see that it was the globalized and internalized fear of fat that was stopping me.  I had come right to the point of “giving up” [on dieting], but for some reason I felt like I was supposed to want to keep dieting.  Like it was some moral imperative that I continue to fight my body to try to make it a smaller size, regardless of whether or not I was successful.)  And once I stopped, stepped back, and really took a good look at my life and my family, I realized that I wasn’t such a freak after all.  At least half – if not more – of my family members (on both my mother’s and father’s sides together) are “overweight.”  Quite a few of them have been larger than me, and some smaller.  I’m pretty much right in the middle of the weight range, for my fat family members.  And, let’s face it: if that “Calories In/Calories Out” shit really were true, universally, then I would probably be about a size 4 by now.  All those times I complained about the fact that my underweight husband eats more than I do, and does less than I do, and stays skinny being unfair… I was right.  When you look at it that way, that is.  But it’s just more proof that my genetics have waaaaaaaaaaaay more to do with my size than my lifestyle does.

And I’m sure I’m not the only one who has come down that road.  I’m not the only one to ever faithfully diet only to have absolutely no “progress” whatsoever.  I’m not the only one who looked back on her life and realized that if this shit that people kept shoving down her throat were true, she’d be thin and “acceptable” by now.  I’m not the only one who was tired of hating herself because she couldn’t conform to some irrational ideal, and wanted to be able to like herself, if not love herself.  It feels like it, sometimes, but I know I’m not the only one to have gone through all of that.

And it was finding the fatosphere that turned it all around for me.  It was here that I learned that learning to love myself – even though I was (and probably always will be) fat – was a good thing.  The people involved here really have made more difference in my life than 10+ years in therapy ever did.  And it’s not just me – finding these people has made a difference in the way I interact with people, and it’s even given my marriage a new lease of life.  I never realized that starting to feel good about myself would make such a huge impact on my life as a whole.  I can’t even put into words how thoroughly amazed I am at how much difference it has made.

And now, when another person starts going down that same road I did, and stumbles upon the Fatosphere, I’m going to get to be part of that.  I’m going to have the privilege of being part of a team of people that will show that person that s/he can be happy, without losing weight.  They can let go of their fantasy of being thin, and their life won’t end.  It’ll only get better.  I get to be part of the team that educates these fat people, and makes them realize that they have been treated unfairly and they don’t have to take it.  They will learn the truth about all this so-called “science” regarding the “obesity epidemic” (and don’t get me started on the whole “epidemic” shit – you can’t CATCH fat, for fuck’s sake!).  And they will start viewing themselves and the people around them in a new light.  And slowly, day by day, that weight they’ve been carrying upon their shoulders – the weight of the internalized fat-hatred and fear – will lessen.  It won’t completely go away until society finally gets its head out of its collective ass and accept that, yes, people are supposed to come in all shapes and sizes.  Just like skin color, there is supposed to be variety in the human race.  Until that happens, though, that weight will never completely go away.

But I get to be part of helping people along a path of self-acceptance, and eventually, acceptance of all people, fat AND thin.

And that?  That’s exciting.  And humbling.  But most of all, it’s an honor.


11 Responses

  1. Congratulations!!!

    Incidentally, I had pretty much the same reaction as you did (OMG, seriously? Me? Wow! Really? REALLY? Wow.) when I found out I was added to the feed (the Fat Liberation feed, in my case) :mrgreen:

  2. Speak the truth Sister! Speak It loud! Speak It Proud! You are not alone! In fact, you have inspired me to take action as well. I am going to write a strongly worded letter to the surgeon general, informing him of the truth. I will show him a link to your blog so that he can learn that fat is not a product of lifestyle but of genetics, and that calories are irrelevant. Surely he will take action and have the caloric content removed from food labels since it is irrelevant. I will also send him a link to the Queen Fatty’s The Fantasy of Being Thin so that he can see the pain we suffer through at no fault of our own. Surely, faced with the facts he will back down, he is a man of Science after all and we have science on our side. Fat is genetic. That is why the number and size of fat people has remained constant over time and why Poland is suffering through a crisis of almost 11% obesity. I will get to it as soon as I finish my lunch and clean up, because you wouldn’t believe how messy ranch dressing covered bacon can be.

  3. You know what, I’m not going to let you get me riled again. You are a sad, pathetic little person who gets joy out of trolling fat blogs. Is your life really so bereft of any sort of meaning? If I thought you deserved it, I’d feel sorry for you. But your evil bile, your vitriol, will not affect me anymore. I’ll just sit back and watch you quietly burn yourself alive from the inside out with your hate.

    You are meaningless to me.

  4. Congrats!

  5. Yay, Nuckingfutz is on the feed!

    Consider the troll un-fed. I suspect she prefers it that way anyway.

  6. Holy shit that Tara person. Wow.

    And yay Nuckingfutz.

    And incidentally why would you ruin good bacon with a buttload of ranch? WHY?

  7. Welcome to the feed, I’m looking forward to reading your blog! I wandered over here via Shapely Prose.
    Oh, I like how the sentence “many people that I admire and like whose posts make the feed” is divided into links of the bloggers you like. 🙂

  8. Yay, another blog to read! I like your comments on other blogs, so I can’t wait to read your posts. 🙂

  9. very very cool.

  10. Welcome to the feed 🙂

  11. “It won’t completely go away until society finally gets its head out of its collective ass and accept that, yes, people are supposed to come in all shapes and sizes. Just like skin color, there is supposed to be variety in the human race. ”

    I’ve also got a very thin husband as well as two kids, and I’m always telling them what you said above–that people are supposed to come in all shapes, sizes, and colors.

    I think that the first step in de-assifying our culture is to work on the children *g*.

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