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First of all, thank you everyone for the comments on my picture ūüėÄ I will post Ren Faire wedding pictures, probably because I will still be in a “Look how amazing I am!” mood and will want to show them off. (And to answer the comments about the photographer and the area.. the photographer was my mom, and we were standing there as one of the prettiest places in front of the magistrate’s office / police station where we were married. :D)

Many times I’ve thought of writing in here, just getting out my thoughts, and then a bout of laziness, or of who cares, comes around, and I don’t.

The therapy is helping. I’m trying to work through this mentality, that I am not as good as everyone else because I’m larger than them. Well that’s not the only reason for it, but it does make up big portion. And, oddly enough, Brian has told me how much he dislikes it when he hears me put myself down.. oddly enough, because I expect him to agree with me and have a preference for those thin, beautiful women who you find in magazines and pornography (I have an issue with porn and sexuality. Ive had more of an issue with my body image and porn ever since I made the discovery that my husband actually watches it. Yes, I am naive. But this is a tangent)

So I have finally watched the Susan Boyle clip that I have heard so much talked about, and I absolutely love it. Not only because she doesn’t fit the mold of what a wonderful singer should look like, and not because she’s singing a song that I love to sing, but because of the confidence that she shows in herself through the whole thing. Like her, Ive always wanted to sing, by myself, in front of a large audience. I’ve either sang in a chorus in front of a large audience (I miss doing theater!) or by myself in front of a small audience (which, I will brag, I got one of the few standing ovations of the night. I was 16 at the time). I don’t even know if, right now, I could have the confidence to get in front of an audience and sing. Hell, I don’t know if I could do it in front of directors for community theater. And that’s depressing, because that was always one of my loves, doing shows, and I miss it.

I don’t know if I have a point to this – I don’t write as well as some of the blogs I love to read, and it’s really more about me than current events. I guess the point is that I want to regain my confidence, my thought that I am beautiful and sexy. I want to believe that people really like me without second-guessing if it is a trick.

A friend just posted her status on facebook “I just bought jeans 2 sizes smaller than I would have in the beginning of the year.” A reply to it agreed that this really was the best feeling. Part of me feels horrible because my jeans size has gone up, not down, from where my small size. And part of me wonders “Is this what life is? Feeling wonderful just because your size went down, or like a failure because it went up?” For so long, it seems like thats how my life has gone. And I’m so damn tired of it.

Too fat, too thin. Is anyone happy with themselves?

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Once more, I live!

It’s been a long time.¬† HI, all!¬† *waves*

In the time since I’ve last posted, I’ve gone from a fat girlfriend to a fat fiance to a fat wife.¬† It was a immediate family only wedding at the courthouse, so we’re planning another one.¬† At the PA Renaissance Faire.¬† And I get to wear a corset.¬†¬† Woot.

But I’ll post a wedding picture at the end of this.¬† I got lucky going shopping for a dress with my mom – we didn’t want a “wedding” dress, because of my formal wedding, but we wanted something nice, and a 3 piece dress we found at Nordstrom was perfect.¬† Plus, I got to bust the myth that hot, thin men aren’t attracted to fat women.¬† ūüôā

___

I’ve been fighting with myself lately.¬† I had a long talk with my mom when I went back to PA for the holidays, alot of which centered around body image.¬† She talked about the fact that all I wear are ratty jeans, stained t-shirts, and old hoodies with holes in them.¬† Because that’s all I own.¬† I hate clothes shopping.¬† I have it drilled in my head that everything I put on looks horrible on me, because I’m fat.¬† Wedding dress?¬† Indeed was beautiful, but I looked ugly in it becase I’m fat.

We went clothes shopping the day after Christmas (Day after sales are awesome).¬† I needed her with me, because I really can’t judge myself – I can’t look past what has been drilled into my brain as something ugly and shameful to see how the clothes actually look.¬† I think there was only one thing that I bought that I said “Wow, that’s amazing” – a zip-up purple hoodie with a matching scarf.¬† Everything else I bought I had the thought¬† “Wow, this is a really nice shirt.¬† Too bad I’m fat, or it would look better.”

The shopping made me happy, because I did need new clothes.¬† And it did include some more theraputic talks with my mom.¬† She said to me¬† “You’re young, you’re pretty, and you deserve to wear pretty clothes.¬† There’s nothing wrong with wearing old clothes around the house, but there’s also nothing wrong with wearing something nicer when you go out with you friends, because you’re young and pretty and you deserve to look nice.”¬† And she’s right.¬† Although sometimes it’s hard to not tell myself “Who cares, this is good enough” when the truth is that I care.

I told my mom I’m going to seek out therapy again, because working past my body issues is not something I can do alone.¬† I think I can get a therapist through my insurance, and hopefully I can find someone who is body positive.

___

And, as promised, a photo! (please don’t think Im posting the picture in a “OMG interwebz validate me!” effort.. I just loved the day, loved the dress, and want to share, my own body image issues aside :D)

B and me!

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On livejournal, Im a member of a community geared for retail people to complain about customers they have.  One young woman wrote about the fact that she is very, very thin, and she had  a customer who started telling her she was too thin, that men like women with a little meat on thier bones, that she should eat more, etc, etc.  The poster said that she actually eats, but has a medical problem where she cannot gain weight.  Of course, her customer did not know that, but that did not mean that they had any right to make that comment.

The post got a ton of replies, many from people going through the same thing, or knowing people who do.¬† “Yes I eat.¬† No I do not have an eating disorder.¬† I’m a normal, healthy person who just cannot gain weight.¬† Please leave me alone now.”

Ok maybe I’m naive, or I just don’t pay attention.¬† I have friends who are insanely thin, who eat alot, but I don’t think I have ever heard that being naturally super-thin go through something similar that overweight people have to go through.¬† I was really surprised…¬† after all, thin is supposed to be the ideal, right?¬† A commenter said that she was tired of hearing that men don’t like really thin girls.¬† It was eye opening to hear a line that was used often towards me being said to someone on the opposite end of the physical spectrum.¬† (And it begs the question…¬† if men don’t like thin girls, and men dont like fat girls, who the hell do they like???)

Human bodies are seriously amazing.¬† I have been watching a serious on the Discovery Channel called¬†Human Body: Pushing the Limits¬†that talks about the different, seeming impossible things that our bodies are capable of.¬† It’s really fascinating to watch the things that science is discovering now.¬† I can remember the last episode I watched, a man was shipwrecked or stranded, and his main source of food was fish he was catching.¬† After a while, he was put off with eating the parts most people normally eat, and found himself craving the eyes and other usually discarded parts.¬† Why?¬† He was lacking in essential nutrients, and his body was sending messages to try different things to make up those nutrients by making those strange things desirable.¬† It’s the same reason, the show said, that humans can eat things like onions or garlic.

Which really just leaves me to think – if I am healthy, if I have nothing medically wrong with me….¬† what is wrong with¬†letting my body tell me what I do and do not want?¬† While I was dieting, I would be hungry, and thinking of food, but I would not eat because it would put me over calories.¬† And although I maintained that for maybe a year, in the end my body said “that’s enough!” and I just could not keep it up anymore.¬† So Im happily once again where I was.¬†¬† I exercise, and I eat what my body tells me to eat…¬† and in all honesty, the food I have been eating has really been the same as when I was losing weight.¬† The difference is that Im not measuring and counting everything.

The idea goes the same whether you are naturally fat or naturally thin.  Our bodies know what they are doing. 

(I apologize right now – sometimes when I write, I go all over the place.¬† I hope I made sense ūüôā ).

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Thoughts on diabetes

DISCLAIMER:¬† I am medically illiterate.¬† I know nothing about diabetes except what I have learned from my parents and my sister – and I admit that openly.¬† I know that there is not one factor that says “Yes, this is what causes it.”¬† That aside, the point of this is not to say that “this is what they did to become diabetic”, the point is to¬†say that I don’t think thier actual WEIGHT, the number on the scale,¬†made a¬†difference in what happened.¬† I think it was genetics and choices.¬†¬†¬†

First of all, thank you to everyone who replied to my last entry.  You guys make me feel better.

Now, onward!

There are thoughts I have been having and semi-formulating into a post, but an entry Rachel wrote in her blog made me decide to put my 2 cents in.

Diabetes runs heavily in my family.  Out of my parents, my sister, and myself, I am the only one who is not diabetic.  My sister was diagnosed at 16.  The health scare of OMFGIDONTWANTTOGOTHROUGHTHAT is part of the reason I started the cycle of losing and gaining weight.  But then I stopped to think about some things.

True story:  My mom was the first one to be diagnosed, but she suspects that she first developed diabetes when she was pregnant with me.  Her eating was good, her blood sugar was fine, she was reaching the last 2 months of her pregancy and was getting checkups every week.  One day, due to an unrelated incident, my mother broke her excellent eating and ate a bunch of sugary, bad-for-you crap.  Her blood sugar shot up, and the doctor said that if it was that high at her next checkup they would have to take measures.

Except, of course, that didn’t happen.¬† Not because her sugar went down, but because she went into labor.¬† And in the early morning of April 10, 1985, I came into being¬† (YES!¬† Its comming up.¬† Buy me stuff, if you desire :D).¬† My lungs were unfinished and I had no chin.¬† My mom has a picture that she made the nurses take of me, that we affectionately call my “dead baby picture” because…¬† well thats what I looked like.¬† I was black and blue and hooked up to a bunch of machines.¬† I have a perminent scar on my ankle from an IV.

Scary stuff, huh?¬† There’s a point to this, I promise.

This story, more than any, fueled my want to lose weight.¬† My Goddess, I thought, I don’t want to have to put up with the worry if my baby is going to live, or if she is going to have cerebral palsey or any kind of brain damage.¬† I don’t want to buy things for her and tell her “Look, I got this.¬† Now you have to live so you can use it.”¬† I better lose weight NOW so I never ever have to deal with this kind of situation.

But I think back on the conversations myself and my mother have had.¬† Ive asked her for the details on my birth, and never has she ever mentioned her weight as a factor.¬† And she’s not trying to proctect me or make herself look better.¬† She openly admitted¬† “I ate a lot of things that night that I shouldn’t have.”¬† One night.¬† One night of extremely bad choices that made her blood sugar go up.¬† Was it the breaking point, biologically?¬† Perhapes.¬† I know that you can develop gestational diabetes (please someone correct my spelling on that, lol), and that’s what happened.¬† (She wasn’t diagnosed with type 2 until I was about 5 or 6).

But she, and I, were completely healthy for the 7 months she did carry me.¬† There was never a moment of “Hi, your at risk because your fat.”¬† Neither was there for my older sister.¬† The high blood sugar came as a surprise to the doctors.

As for my sister, I was 12 or 13 when she was diagnosed.¬† I don’t remember much of the circumstanes – I’ll have to ask her and update. but I do remember this – at the time, she and I were both selling candy as a fundraiser for the youth theater company we were a part of, and every moment my sister would buy a candy bar for breakfast.¬† This was at the time she took the fasting glucose test, because I remember my mother said “You know if it turns out you are diabetic, you won’t be able to do that anymore.”¬†

And once again, nothing was mentioned – that I ever heard, and I think if the doctor made a huge deal about my sister’s weight my mother would have mentioned mine to me – about the fact that my sister was overweight.¬† Why should he?¬† She was overweight, yes, but we were both active.¬† We participated in musical theater.¬† My sister held a part-time job which she had to walk to.¬† We weren’t those lazy fat people that you always hear about.

¬†Now there’s me.¬† Almost 23.¬† Diabetic parents, sister, grandfather…¬† I think a cousin out there somewhere.¬† And Im not.¬† I haven’t checked my sugar in a while, but I¬† have been around them enough to know what the signs of low blood sugar are.¬† Ive seen them enough, and Ive never seen them in myself.¬† I had a fasting blood test when I was in high school¬† (I was falling asleep in class and my teachers demanded I have blood tests as well as an EEG, to see if the childhood seizures I suffered from came back.¬† Which my mother thought was stupid, even though she did it¬† “Who ever heard of someobe having a seizure every day at 12:45?”)¬† and it was completely normal.¬† I am once again over 200 pounds.¬† So why is it that I’m not taking insulin pills along with the rest of my family?

The difference, I think, is in what I eat.¬† Not that I eat great – my good i worked in fast food for 4 years, my eating was horrible.¬† I think its because I don’t eat sugary things.¬† I judt dont like them.¬† I’ll eat¬†a candy bar, sure, and I have my weakness (mm.¬† Peanut butter cups.¬† joy right there).¬† The rest of my family has always had a more diverse eating pattern than I, and its really the only difference I can think of.

In other words, was it their weight?  No.  I think it was the combination of a predisposition to the disease plus the choices that they made.  Proof?  When they are eating non-sugary things, and doing some form of moving (my sister still walks everywhere that our mom or her boyfriend doesnt drive her, or when my mom worked as an activity director in a nursing home and walked miles a day) along with taking their medication, they had no blood sugar problems.  They never followed the 1500 or whatever calorie diet.  They, GASP!, ate intuitively, and moved, and took their meds, and they were fine.

As for me?¬† My resolve is to add more exercise to my day, since I no longer walk everywhere – but stuff I enjoy like running and fencing.¬† I plan on working on my intuitive eating, and not stress about my calores.¬† And you can bet that when I decide to have children I’ll stay away from sugar altogether – which really isn’t that much of a sacrifice.¬† And I think that then I’ll be fine.

_______

And on a completely random note, the boyfriend and I went grocery shopping over the weekend.¬† One habit I have kept from my “diet days” is making large quantities of healthy foods, portioning them out, and freezing them.¬† It’s cheaper than going out for lunch and it tastes better than packaged food.¬† ūüôā¬†¬† So now I have a bunch of Spanakopita and Italian Wedding Soup in my freezer, enough for about a month I would say,¬† Im a happy little girl.

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Ok I havce been a bad blogger. Truth is, school and things have been kicking me in the behind, leaving me stressed and exhausted.¬† But I’ve been feeling good about myself.¬† I can look in the mirror and not cringe.¬† Heck I actually like what I see sometimes!¬† And for someone with a lifetime of self-loathing, that is a feat.

Until tonight.

I really di8dn’t want to do leftovers / whatever we have laying around tonight – we’re going grocery shopping tomorrow and are shelves are bare.¬† So the boyfriend and I decided to go to Outback.¬† Our bread comes, and the boyfriend cuts himself an end.¬† I take the knife to cut the other end¬† (because the bread ends are always the best part) and cut myself a piece.¬† It’s not a huge piece; larger than his, because he cut a tiiiny piece, but it’s a normal size, I would say.

Boyfriend looks at it in surprise and says “Holy crap!”

Cue Fae dropping her piece of bread back with the rest of it.¬† It must have showed on my face, because he started apologizing right away.¬† But I didnt want it anymore.¬† All of a sudden I felt like crying.¬† Im pretty much back to being the size I always was, after all.¬† Only that must¬†not be good enough.¬† (I know I know that that’s BS.¬† If it wasn’t more than good enough, we wouldnt have lasted 6.5 years.¬† But this is whats going on in my brain).

It took a few minutes for me to compose myself, for him to tell me (multiple times) that he didn’t mean it to be offensive, etc, etc.¬† I did end up eating my bread, but I didn’t enjoy it the way I usually do.

I want to be strong.¬† I want to love myself, as I am.¬† I look at the fatosphere blogs, and I see all these strong, beautiful women, and I want to be like them.¬† But Im sure that they too were where I am now, trying to come to grips with the idea that its ok to not be a size 0.¬† And I know there are young women out there who haven’t even heard that idea yet.

Maybe it was an over-reaction.  maybe I should just chill the hell out.  Maybe all of you are out there rolling your eyes.  But this is my therepy after all.  One step at a time.

_____________

On a happier note, its Spring Break!¬† Im going to go visit my dear friend M, we are going to watch Ghost Hunters dvds and she is going to teach me how to sew.¬† I want to start making my own clothes, it is hard to find flattering clothes in styles that I like that don’t cost an arm and a leg.¬† Any of you crafty readers out there know of any good sewing pattern websites, let me know, k?¬† And I’ll let you know how my first pattern comes out!

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Im so disappointed

Im sure this topic as been rehashed over and over, but I have to say something.

¬†Man, I used to love Queen Latifah.¬† Seriously, that woman became my hero the moment I watched Chicago.¬† Beautiful, good actress, amazing vocalist, famous, successful, and fat?¬† I would tell people that I thought she was a great role model on just that alone – that you don’t have to be a size 0 in order to get what you want.

And let me tell you, when I heard her sing ‘Big, Blond, and Beautiful’ in Hairspray well, you can imagine.¬†I’ll admit, this song and this woman in general helped me think of trying to accept myself for who I am.

But the other night I was watching tv wih the boyfriend, and I saw it.  One of the Queen Latifah Jenny Craig commercials.  I knew they were out there, but to actually see it was flooring.  And a huge, huge disappointment.

Queen Latifah, you could have done so much to help young women see that they are perfect just the way they are.¬† Doing some looking online, I found that she’s also started the program. Why?¬† You say you want to be healthier, not thinner.¬† Oh, you don’t need to be part of an ad-campaign to do that.

While looking it up online, I found a website (ifitandhealthy.com – I would post a direct link to the page but it’s really just useless) that posted that she said she already eats healthy – organic, vegetables, etc – but she eats large portions, and thats why she’s not thin.¬† This was thier reply to that comment:

“Organic food and vegetables is always a good thing to eat, of course; I suspect, however, that she did not gain weight eating organic vegetables. Just because cookies, candies, white bread, fruit juices and many other foods are made from organic ingredients, does not mean they are good for you”

*facepalm*¬† well of course!¬† She’s fat, so of COURSE she does nothing but sit at home all day eating cookies, candies, white bread, and OMG evil fruit juices!¬† Guys, I figured it out, I figured everything out!¬† I am saved!¬† Halelujah!

Sorry.  I had to get that out of my system.

The whole business really just makes me sad and disappointed.¬† There’s so many issues in all of this.

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In my amazing philosophy class last semester, my teacher said that a belief someone has must meet 3 criteria before they can truely “know” it.¬†

1.  The person must believe the statement is true
2.  This belief must be backed by evidence that is true and relevent
3.  The statement must be true.

I very much like this criteria, so thereofore I am going to apply it to my favorite idea about overweight ladies:

<b>If you are overweight, you will not be found sexually desirable</b>

There is the belief.¬† I can say that is not something I “know”, because I do not believe it, thereby eliminating criteria #1.¬† I have never been shown statistical or scientific evidence on this idea alone (that a woman above the “normal” range, no matter how much, is not desirable), so there goes criteria #2.

As for criteria #3, that the statement must be true, allow me to tell you a story of two brothers, B and J

The time I am going to speak about, B was 17 and J was 15.  Both were normal, good-looking boys, a bit silly like most boys are, but tall and thin and intelligent.  Both started dating girls within two weeks of each other РB found a girl who was 16 years old and 250 pounds, but was pretty and intelligent and liked to make people laugh.  J found a girl who was 13, somewhere in the high 100s, also smart and driven.

But of course, that would not last, right?¬† After all, both young women were overweight, no matter what society’s standards, they are therefore ugly and undesirable.¬† Everyone knows that.

Except now, 6 years later, J and his young woman are engaged, and will be married this year.¬† And B and his young woman have been living together for almost 2 years.¬† Although both women tried for some time, neither one ever became “thin.”

And I know this story is “true” because I am the woman B started dating at 17.

It took me a long time to figure out.  I wanted to be beautiful and thin, and I thought no man would look at me.  But not only have I been with the most wonderful man ever for 6.5 years, Ive been hit on more than my thinner friends. 

So in my mind, there go all three of the criteria.  But this is a statement I have seen over and over again, in books and in magazines and on the internet and anywhere else I can think of Рno one will want you unless you have a weight that someone else tells you is acceptable. 

Its easy to get sucked into.¬† Feeling guilty because I am not thin enough.¬† In reality, who cares?¬†¬† People who are jealous of me, probably.¬† I’m intelligent and successful and I have what they do not – a healthy, happy relationship with my significant other.

So the next time you have the urge to think “Fat people are not desirable, no one wants to date a fatty”,¬† just stop and think if that really is very important.¬† At a risk of sounding cliche, is it the fat or the person who is more important?

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