Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Attitude

People have a severe stigma to being overweight. As one of those who are deemed 'obese', even 'morbidly obese' (what does that really mean anyways?), I am subject to ridicule, whether the people are aware of it or not. I am frequently afraid to go out in this body of mine because I see the looks of heavy judgment. Overweight people are considered either unwilling or unable to fend for themselves properly. They either "don't know" how to cook healthy foods or are "too lazy" to do so (thank you, Oprah, for further enabling this mindset, you tramp). Both are severely unflattering attitudes towards the overweight.

When I had my second kidney transplant, I was 114 pounds. You see now that it didn't last. I recovered from my illness and without getting into the habit of eating healthy, my weight returned and I became heavier than I have ever been in my life. But it didn't happen overnight. Soon after I recovered from my transplant, I began swimming because it was an easier form of exertion than walking, which I still did nightly (until that vicious dog bit me, then I was a little more hesitant). Fat people do not get that way overnight. It is NOT a conscious decision. Those who do not bear that burden of obesity do not seem to realize this. I did not wake up from the operating table thinking "Glad that's over with, I'm going to go to McDonalds now and order one of everything off the menu with double fries!"

Many overweight people also have very slow metabolisms. I am burdened with that as well, thanks to medication that keep me alive and healthy. My darling sister has a metabolism like a roaring wildfire in the middle of summer whereas mine is like a soggy log.

And then there are the pernicious habits. One of the ones I'm trying to overcome is eating after dinner. I get hungry after 9 or 10, but it's not an appetite sort of hungry, it's a nibbly, snacky sort of hunger. I also have gained the habit while reading and, well, it's been a very read-y sort of week, what with Harry Potter (which I haven't finished yet, so hush) and all and you know, grapes are only so appetizing until my body rebels against whatever it is in fruit that makes it go like a bullet through the system. Ugh.

So, give the overweight a chance. Do not dismiss or judge. They are neither less intelligent, nor less ambitious than anyone else. They *are* resentful, however. They deal with a lot of abuse. I've had to endure talks from people who think that they know my circumstances intimately. I've heard insults from doctors and friends. I tolerate it because I realize that they *don't* know, but it doesn't hurt any less.

2 comments:

Jen said...

It's pectin. The substance in fruit that makes it a bowel stimulant.

My biggest hurdle to being losing weight is my food allergies. My body has been starving for so long from nutrients that it's hard not to pack on the pounds when I do eat. My metabolic rate is so slow for years I wouldn't sweat when I exercised, I just collapsed/blacked out for an hour. Every story is different. I use to weigh 102 ten years ago, then the sickness got worse.

Pearson Family said...

Just so you know, babe, you're not alone! I know you feel like the world is watching and judging you, and I feel that way in a different aspect.

I feel judged about being a mom-- breastfeeding vs. nursing (we call lactation consultants nipple nazis around here!), or spanking vs. not. And so many people have such strong opinions on them! There are lots of other issues and when comparing myself to other moms, I often feel badly. Very badly.

I'm like you--I generally agree or disagree softly (hard to belive, I know!). Because, most times, aren't people talking just to hear themselves talk? They want to hear that they're right. So, rather than create a huge debate, I try to make it more lighthearted.

I choose to surround myself with people who lift me up, not tear down. They leave my problems as my problems, until I ask their advice.

And Kit, I admire you so much. You are empathetic and full of love. It seems to me, that you more than anyone just want to see people happy with who they are. And it shows in your friends. People are drawn to you. And then, you become their greatest ally and greatest defender (if they ever need it).

So there! Here's to not caring about what other people think!! Keep up the great work and for working on a goal because you want to. I LOVE YOU!