Once upon a time, I was younger and thinner. I was that sort of thin that people presumed was due to an eating disorder, and that I needed to be harassed about it. I rolled my eyes a lot, because oh hey, I was that size because I was that size — I trusted my body to do what it needed to do with itself and left it that.
Years and kids later, I am properly fat in a way I never thought I would be. Hell, I’m even ‘obese’ by BMI standards. BMI is total bullshit though and was never intended to apply to individuals, so I have a huge dose of ‘does not give a fuck about that’.
But yes, fat. I tried and ‘succeeded’ in losing the baby weight after my first pregnancy. I lost 25 pounds in 6 months, nice and smoothly… and the second I quit calorie counting and forcing myself to exercise too much, it all came back and then some. And by ‘second’, I mean ‘less than a month’. It wasn’t that I started mainlining pie or anything — it was that my body was not okay with trying to lose the weight and made sure I knew it. Some came off later, and I just sort of rolled with it. I couldn’t care less that I wasn’t as thin as I was before that pregnancy — I was just annoyed that I continued to look pregnant. And no, not fat — seriously hardcore six months pregnant.
Fast foward past another pregnancy, and a new psych med, and I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been. I was 101 through high school, 114 through the Air Force, and 140~ between my weight settling after pregnancy one and pregnancy two. I’m something like 185 right now, and you know what?
I love it.
Now see, if there is any way in which I am bloke-ish, it is that I have always abhorred worrying about clothing. I hated trying it on in stores, I hated having to replace anything that got too torn up… it was just annoying. Yes, I knew that back then I had a goddess body and that anything I put on it looked amazing, so that sort of made things… easier, I guess? It meant that I could ‘get away’ with not worrying about what I bought.
Having said that, I don’t now either. AND I actually am having a lot more fun buying clothing for myself. I think that a part of it comes from feeling freer to express myself, which I’ve had fun taking advantage of compliments of a TeeTurtle addiction. But also, getting over my snotty thin girl things and trying garments like leggings, long tanks, things that are basic wardrobe staples that are great to build on. Today I’m wearing a jersey dress (with pocketeses!) over leggings, with some of my super-cute socks pulled over the leggings, and then my bad-ass purple pleather Doc Martins. Tomorrow, I am thinking that I am going to wear one of the tops I just picked up at Tesco off the sale rack, maybe pair it with my pearls to be super-fancy.
But really, it’s all about self-love. I used to think that I loved myself, but it was buried under layers of concrete and landmines to keep it safe from the outside world. It’s exhausting to love under those conditions. I was fortunate to marry someone whose gentle and constant love enabled me to clear the detritus and to get down to myself. I was fortunate enough that his parents love me unconditionally, which (after I got over being suspicious of it) helped me realised that I was worthy of love from others, and from myself.
There’s also me being, by nature, incredibly stubborn. I refuse to let society define me as acceptable or unacceptable. Instead, I dress in clothing that I find comfortable that fits me. I dye my hair whatever colour I like whenever I manage it (which has been ages ’cause no spooooooons). I freely admit to my illnesses, physical and mental. Some might say I let them define me, but that’s no one’s concern by my own. I will be the crippled, mentally ill, fat girl that I am, and that’s fine by me. And my husband. And my kids. And you know what? Those are the only three opinions that matter outside of my own. 🙂