“It’s about what you put in here (points to mouth)...”
I’ve gained some weight.
Last year, due to Crossfit + workout classes at National Stadium I was smoking hot. But as a result of deciding I’m pretty much over lifting caribou-sized weights and stair running, but not over drinking copious amounts of wine, I put on 15, some days 20 lbs, since then.
It’s been a bit of a bummer, mainly because I want to wear my clothes, and you know, heart disease, so I’m looking forward to losing the weight, but am not quite sure how it’s going to happen. I’m generally pretty active – I have a famous pedal bike named Shoshanna, do yoga, and walk lots. Unfortunately, I haven’t seen a change in my eating habits or liquor intake, and clearly the intensity of activity is not burning off any calories.
About 2 months ago, a lady who works in the Towne felt compelled to tell me she was very worried with how fat I was getting and specifically that my butt and thighs were out of control. Her advice was to remember that ‘it’s about what you put in here (points to mouth)’. One particularly explicit response came to mind (tee hee), but I just laughed off my shock and embarrassment, and told her I know. She went on and on… and I just stood there saying, ‘yes, you are right, mm-hmm’.
When I told the story to others, they were stunned. Do you know this lady? She has some nerve! Why didn’t you tell her to mind her business?
I didn’t have an answer. Why DIDN’T I say something? What would I have said? Is it okay for someone to walk up to you, someone who you have not so much as ever had a cup of coffee with, and for her to tell you that you’re fat?
Sadly for both of us, my weight loss is not happening fast enough. Today, she commented on me wearing a dress. In hindsight, I realise she’d thought it odd that I was unashamedly showing my ginormous beastly thighs – but I wasn’t thinking on that level and just started making friendly conversation, responding that I tend to only wear dresses, but am looking to buy more pants because of my bike. (Sidebar: What a boring comment! Why am I jabbering on about pants?)
She says, “Don’t buy any just yet. You’re going to start losing weight soon. Wait til you lose the weight to go shopping…”
I froze mid-blink so I could rewind what she said and see if I’d heard correctly. I’m sorry… what? Not only am I fat, but I’m also forbidden from shopping? And AGAIN… AGAIN I said nothing! Just did a ‘heh heh’ forced chuckle and walked away.
I will stand up for any cause that I feel passionately about. I chase down litterers and speak up for people who I feel are being mistreated. My friends routinely sigh because I am always gently nudging (my term) slash lecturing (their term) them about being kind to the planet. My first blog post highlighted a situation where I’d been insensitive, and granted, I went about it the wrong way, but even in that case, I’d been standing up for something I believe in.
But earlier this year, a man stood outside my office while I worked late, and pulled out his penis. Rather than screaming, making a fuss, taking a picture - anything that would be about protecting myself - my immediate thought was about protecting the town. I pretended I didn't see him, so the police would have time to arrive and catch him. They didn't. And instead I ended up scared and devastated.
Maybe I didn’t react to the 'fat' comments because it wasn't that big a deal, or maybe, even when something is a big deal, I'm not used to standing up for myself.