Tuesday, March 19, 2013

The Day I Found Out I Was Fat

I always remember being a thick girl in a family of slender ones. I always remember not being able to use my sister's hand-me-downs because by the time she was done with them they were already too small for me. I remember always having my cheeks pinched by doting aunts as they said, "Oh what chubby cheeks!" But it never occurred to me that these were signs that I was fat.
I never hated myself when I was young. Sure my brothers and their friends called me fat, but they called everyone fat. It was like the go-to insult in Junior High. I knew I was thick. Thick, and nothing more. Not fat. Not chunky. And certainly not obese.
Then came high school. I had been going out with this really great guy who was classically handsome and very funny, charming and loving. He was generous and gave me anything I asked for. But he never complimented me on my body. He would compliment me sexually, but never physically. At first I thought these compliments were one and the same. But then when I really thought about it, I realized he had never called me beautiful. He had never grazed my thigh and told me he loved the way my skin felt. Basically, I was good at fu**ing, but not so great to look at. At least that's how it felt.
On one particular date, we were at a very romantic outdoor concert, enjoying the breeze as we ate our picnic lunch and listened to Mozart. At one point I stood up and dropped my purse, and my handsome man picked it up for me and put all the contents back inside. Then he came across my I.D.
"Look at this," he chuckled, "We way the exact same as each other!"
I could have died.
That's when it occurred to me that I was a big girl. Still not obese, but at 160 lbs I certainly wasn't skinny. I began to cry then and there and a couple weeks later he and I broke up. I didn't want to be with a man who made a joke out of how much I weighed.
I didn't know I was fat until someone pointed it out to me, and I didn't hate my body until I was given a reason to. I was happy not being a size 2. I was a proud size 10 with a great sense of style and almost illegal love for shoes. But in one day I went from looking at the 10 on my tags as being something that made me unique to being something that made me just another fat girl.
I wasn't a different person after being called fat for the first time. I was still me. But I looked at myself differently. I looked at my skinny fiends in their bikinis and was too ashamed to wear anything less than a tank top and shorts to the beach. I began to loo at myself and hate everything my eyes saw. Including my eyes. There wasn't one thing about myself that I loved. Or even liked. Or even could tolerate anymore.
My point is, self-confidence has nothing to do with how you look, and everything to do with how you look at yourself. It took time - years even, for me to be comfortable in my own skin, and even now I have issues. I have goals for myself still that I plan to accomplish on the road to being a confident woman. For example, I still don't let my husband see me naked with the lights on...
I do know, though, that I love my body now more than I ever have before. In reality, I'm probably actually in the worst physical shape of my life. But I don't feel like I need to please everyone with being another molded, sculpted, cookie-cutter girl. I am now officially a plus-size woman, wearing a size 1X in almost everything. But I'm in a better place now than I've ever been.
It's a long road to get there, but I can tell you the first thing I did. I got use to my body. Every day, I would get completely naked and stare at myself in the mirror for about 5 minutes. I would turn around, look at my back and but and legs. I would stare (in disgust, at first) at the cellulite that has plagued me since as far back as I can remember. I would just look at it all. Take it in, Get used to it.
Here's why I think it helped: every day, we pass billboards, watch TV, go to movies, read magazines, and listen to news reporters who all have one thing in common: the "perfect" body. Yes these woman are breathtakingly beautiful, but so are we. So are YOU. We get so used to looking at them that when we look at ourselves we see only the so-called imperfections. We see the short stature, the sagging boobs, the floppy tummy, the dimpled butt, the extra chins, and the stretch-marked upper arms. We see the things we think make us ugly because we don't look like Kate Moss. Well guess what? She doesn't look like you, either. I'm sure there are things that she and all the other models and actresses and so-forth look at about themselves and hate. There are things they want to change. They're not the same things as you, but they exist. They see imperfections, too. I know they do. My sister is one of the most beautiful woman I will ever know, but every time I'm with her she's complaining about the way she looks.
Truth is, you are just as real a woman as them, and vice-versa. We all put our pants on the same way. We all have jobs. We all breathe the same air. Why should you hate yourself any more? You shouldn't.
Take my advice. Just do the mirror thing every day, or every day that you can. You'll absolutely hate it at first, but after a few weeks, you'll be looking at the world differently, I promise.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Hating your body 101

My name is Lei and I'm fat. There, I said it. I'm about 80 lbs overweight, according to my BMI (body mass index). I have cellulite from my waist to my knees, stretch marks on my tummy, and at least 3 chins. I have 2 beautiful children whom I love more than anyone or anything in this world. But I have to blame them partially for the way I look.
Now before you go off on me for blaming my kids, let me reiterate - I said I blame them partially, not completely. I didn't have stretch marks before I had them. Okay that's a lie. But I didn't have them as badly as I have them now, that's for certain. My tummy and boobs weren't as saggy before I had kids. But if stretch marks and sagging are what it took to bring my babies into the world, so be it. I have no regrets there.
My goal with this blog is to obtain something of a following and to give people a woman (me) who is completely honest about the woes that entail the life of a fat woman. I want to let everyone know that there is one among them who admits she's got problems, attempts to fix them, wants to be beautiful and slim and hot again, but isn't. Not yet anyway. This won't be about dieting (that's not the plan, anyway...) or about exercising or about weight loss. It is all about my journey to find ways to accept the things about me that I currently hate.
I know I called the blog "How To Hate Yourself," and that may make people think I hate myself. I don't. I love my life, for the most part. There are things about myself that I hate (don't we all have those things?), but I love myself. The reason I called it that was twofold: primarily because I couldn't think of another title that wasn't already taken, and secondarily, because the methods I use will either make you love yourself more, or they will have the complete opposite effect.
If you hate something about yourself for reasons that have to do with emotions, or really any reason other than that you hate your fat body, I probably can't help you. I'm not a shrink, although they have been close friends of mine at times, and I can't help your with any emotional despair you may be feeling. there are people who can help you with that and you should definitely seek help. But that help is not me. All I can do is give MY opinion and the methods I used and still use to cope with the things I hate about myself.
These are not drastic methods, and they are not proven. But they are things I do every day to boost my self-esteem a little. I find new things every day, too, and sometimes they contradict other things I did before. No, this is nothing ground-breaking. But what I do hope it is, is a safe haven of sorts to those out there who think they must look a certain size, wear certain clothes, or drive certain cars in order to be considered hot and sexy.
I want to be me, and I want to be sexy. I want those things to be one and the same. I want to have my completely unique style, wear my makeup however I want, do my hair any fashion that pleases me, and be completely sexy in my own trademark way.
Everyone has a style. Don't let anyone tell you it's not in style. You're style is always in style because you are always you.
I will post my first lesson tomorrow. Thanks for reading, and please tell your friends. I am passionate about this message, and I would love to inspire as many people as I can. Thank you.