I understand that there are a lot of thin people who just don't know what it is like to struggle with weight. While I don't ever think that there is a good reason for being mean and rude to people, I know that they just don't "get it". Those are the people that I feel a little sorry for, because they are in for a hefty life-view adjustment should they one day struggle with maintaining their fitness as they get older.
What gets to me are other ladies who are so disgusted by extra flesh that they flay their own spirit with an acid tongue, and take a bit of my skin off too. I have a rather close relationship with a lady like this, and it confounds me so much that I'm sure that I look like a whipped puppy, cocking it's head in confusion.
I don't understand how any person can look at their body with utter disgust. Sure, I'm not happy with the amount of squishiness that I carry, but I don't hate my body. These are the arms that hug my family. These are the legs that play soccer with my daughter. This is the body that is so very happy when my husband snuggles against it. This body may not look "perfect" to me when I stand before the mirror after a shower, but it is my body. It is the only body that I will have during this mortal life, and I love it no matter what it looks like. Even the broken parts are alright, because they are part of me.
Since I've been losing weight, I have become so much more excited about shopping for clothes. I enjoy finding clothing that looks more my age, and turns my husband's head. For me, being at the size that I am is exciting, because while it isn't where I plan to end up, there is much more freedom here than there was at my high weight. Now, my lady friend, she has a different perspective. Even though her youngest child is only a few months old, she looks at her body with disgust. It makes me sad. I wish that there was something that I could say that would cause her to love herself more, and to be more forgiving. Instead, I find myself drooping a little more every time that she grumps about how bothered she is at the number on her jeans. My back loses some of it's starch because we are nearly the same size. I have a few pounds on her, and whenever she says how disgusted she is with the size of her body, I feel myself shrivel up a little more.
I decided today that I am going to go out shopping, all by myself. I've established the bad habit of asking my lady friend along, mainly because I don't trust my own sense of style. I've been teased a bit about wearing things that other people wouldn't, or in ways that seem odd. As I was trying on clothes the other day, it struck me that I really shouldn't be asking anyone else how I look. When I look at myself in the mirror, if I am happy with the way that clothes make me feel, that is all that should matter. I don't need to be preoccupied with whether or not someone else thinks my outfit is flattering. When I am happy, no one notices my clothes. They notice the smile on my face.
If there is something that I've learned this week, it is that it is wrong for me to allow anyone's negativity drag down my own happiness over where I am. Sadness and disgust have never been motivators for me to treat myself well and strive for better health. Instead, they deflate me. So, I am committed to embracing optimism, contentment, and happiness with an iron-tight grip. The world may look at me and only see a fat woman, but when I look at me I see a woman who has reached her halfway point. I see a woman who has succeeded in increasing her health and strength, and who has every reason to be confident that reaching a "happy weight/size" is easily within her reach. I've gotten this far, and can finish strong. It doesn't matter if it happens during this next year, or takes me a couple of years. So long as I am striving for better health every day, the results will show on my body. Because I have done so much to nurture this body that I love, I have the freedom to have pride in my shape, even if other people see me as far from lovely. I am not defined by the size of my jeans. I am a beautiful woman with a happy smile, and full curves that make my husband crazy. If someone wants to be disgusted by this size or shape, I feel bad for them. I won't join them. Life is too short to waste a moment on hating me. I've got too much loving to do, and not so much time to do it in.