Thursday, September 11, 2008

Why I'm OK with Being a Plus-Sized Woman -
The site with comments to no end.

I've been thinking about this a lot lately, especially in my quest to lose weight. Please believe me when I say I have no desire to be a super skinny model. I'm about 5 foot 5, give or take an inch depending on who measures me, hahaha. Mr. R says I'm 5 foot 4, my stepdad says I'm about 5 foot 6. Either way, I'm short, but not a midget, and I'm certainly not tall. My goal is to be healthy, to be happy, to not starve, and to enjoy food and celebration in its entirety. I want to enjoy a bowl of ice cream, or a dinner with my husband without hauling out a food scale and counting points. I want to live, not measure. With that in mind, I decided that it would be foolish to even attempt to get below plus size. Let's face it...I have a plus sized figure. I always have. Even back in high school, when I was thin, I was very curvy with a big butt, wide hips, breasts, and rarely weighed below 150 all through high school. But I was healthy and active and you can't look at pictures of me from age 14 to 18 and think I'm fat.
As much fun as I had in college, I way over-ate, and never bothered exercising, so I put on about 40 pounds my freshman year. I weighed about 180 to 190 when I got married at age 19. Then I immediately got pregnant with Missy, and weighed 225 when I had her. I managed to drop the weight and was at about 180-185 when I got pregnant with Tiger. When I was pregnant with Tiger, I had a sit down job (like I do now) and immediately ballooned up to about 240. He weighed 8 lb 4oz, and I dropped back down again to about 180. Breast-feeding helped a lot with that. Well, imagine my shock when I got pregnant again, when Tiger was 5 months old. Again, the weight crept back on, and I weighed about 240 when I had Bucket.
So here I am, 240 pounds, 23 years old, and 3 babies. I actually joined a gym and dropped back down to 180, and was well on my way to my beloved 150 when Bucket starting having issues, and I was asked not to bring him to the gym nursery anymore. Within those next few years, I grew increasingly depressed, and the weight crept on. I couldn't bring him anywhere, due to the stares, and my own feelings of insecurity. I actually woke up at 5:30 every morning, got the kids up, and took them to the park to play at 7am so we wouldn't have to interact with any people, and therefore wouldn't have to explain Bucket's erratic behaviors. I made myself a prisoner of my own home, and when you're bored in your house, you eat. And I ate. And I ate. And when I was done eating, I ate again. And so year after year, I noticed I might weigh 5 pounds more than the year before. And 5 pounds is so easy to excuse, isn't it? You can say, sheesh, I have my period, or I'm retaining water, or I just had a steak! And then the next year, you might have gained 7 pounds. And you do that over and over until you realize you weigh 270 pounds, and you haven't had a baby in ten years. And that's a lot of steak. And now the task seems insurmountable! You're surrounded by tv shows like the Biggest Loser, where people can lose 100 pounds in three months. And that sounds great until you realize people gave up their jobs and families in order to participate, and you couldn't do that your children. And you don't have the time to exercise for 8 hours a day, and you don't have a personal chef to make you exquisite meals that fall within the 400 calorie limit. And so your exercise is chasing a naked toddler down the street, and your diet is eating left over mac n cheese off your son's plate. And you get in deeper, and deeper.
I keep starting my sentences with "and." I'm pretty sure that is a grammatical no-no.
Anyhoo, I was lying in bed with Mr. R the other day. I'm not trying to be disgusting or TMI, because I am a Christian woman, but I was...ummm...naked. And he had his head on my stomach and we were watching tv. I think I was rubbing his hair. And he was talking about how much he loved my body, and in my head, I'm thinking, "What an idiot. He had me 120 pounds ago, and he knows what I really should be looking like." I think he can read my mind at times, because he propped himself up and looked at me and said, "Quit being so hard on yourself. I think you're gorgeous." Now, he is not excusing me for being so far overweight, but he's not dogging me for it either. So it makes me wonder, if I'm truly being too hard on myself. And that being plus sized is not the worst thing in the world. After all, Marilyn Monroe would be considered a plus sized woman these days, and she was quite the beauty. I think of beautiful women, like the model Emme, and Queen Latifah, and Sara Ramirez, and Mia Tyler, whose picture I posted above. All women who delight in their curves, in their womanliness, in their femininity. And I think, "yeah, I can do this. I can pull off this body. I can be strong and confident and curvy. I think I'm gonna get a margarita. They have 300 calories and it's absolutely worth it!"

Therefore, I made a list. Top 10 Reasons to be a Plus-Sized Woman.

1) Breasts. Yup, I got em. They're real, they're spectacular, and I didn't have to pay extra for them.

2) Older skinny women pay to have fat injected in their faces to give them a more youthful look. Well, guess what, I already have a chubby face, so I look youthful already!

3) Rap songs are written about our butts. (see "Baby Got Back" and "Apple Bottom Jeans") True, these are both bad novelty rap songs, but do you hear songs about girls with flat butts? Nope, didn't think so.

4) Having a butt. No implant for me. Mine came naturally and looks fantastic in all types of jeans.

5) Babies love to snuggle on me. There is not one sharp bone protruding on me except my nose. When I worked in the nursery at church, babies fell asleep on me all the time. BECAUSE I'M COMFY!!!

6) No problem conceiving. Because I had the necessary fat to support a successful pregnancy, I had very healthy pregnancies, and healthy babies.

7) In case of giants, my bra could be used as a slingshot. Yep. It's true, go ask Goliath (oh wait he's dead.)

8) Ever notice that most plus sized girls have the best hair? I sure have. I think it's because we actually eat, and our hair gets the same nutrients our bodies do. Both my sister and I (she is plus sized also) have awesome hair. We get stopped by strangers on the street to ask about how we do our hair. We don't. It comes naturally to both of us.

9) Someday, I'm going to be a roly-poly grandma. Do you want a roly-poly grandma who wears an apron and gives you cookies, or a stick figure who gives you celery? Yeah, me too.

10) God created me this way. He did not make a mistake. The Bible says, "I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." Psalm 139:14. If God's Word says it, it's good enough for me!

My new weight loss goal is to get at 200. That's it for now. 120 pounds seemed so far away. Like there was no point in even trying. 70 pounds is still a lot of weight, but seems somehow more attainable. At 200, I will re-evaluate and see what needs to be changed.


Miriam said...

hey love, I'm on the fence about your jubilance... I applaud your self confidence and love that you are willing to embrace a body that does not live up to the magazines (sheesh, who's does...), but on the other side, folks with more weight on their bones live shorter life spans... and frankly, you're the bee's knees, and if anyone, girl, you should live forever...(you've got a golden heart), don't give up that time... we need you around...
xo! -M

Sarah R said...

I've always wanted to be the bee's knees! ;)