Letter to my fat self, Part I………

I was working through a book by Marianne Williamson called A Course in Weight Loss: 21 Spiritual Lessons for Surrendering Your Weight Forever. I was working on it months ago, but I got pulled up short with the second lesson. Yep. I couldn’t even get past Lesson Two. The assignment was to write a letter to your Fat Self. I thought that would be no problem. I have a lot to say to her for sure, but then I read the lesson. I’m supposed to write a loving letter? That seemed so false. I HATE Fat Me. So, how do I go on from here?

Well, I’m going to do two letters. First, I’m going to write the letter that is actually in my head. I’m going to share this one with you. Just to warn you, it won’t be pretty. It will be full of harsh imagery, swear words, and rage. I don’t at all believe in prettying up your real feelings, but perhaps as I work through the negative ones out here in the light of day where anyone can stumble upon them, I’ll eventually be able to write the kinder, more gentle and loving words to myself that I need to hear.

Marianne says that to “judge an aspect of yourself as ugly is to abuse yourself.” Really? I’m not sure about that. But, I also don’t know that “tough love” has really worked for me in the long run. So, how do I reconcile all of this, all my conflicting feelings not only about my weight, but about the very fact that I’m supposed to”honor” a part of myself because it does seem to be strengthening that aspect of myself. She would contend that “Not-Thin” me is in my life because she bears a message and that once she is heard, she will disappear. Well, I’ve been struggling, and have had some limited success, with the whole “tough love” approach. I don’t know how much longer I can go with it. Maybe I ought to give her approach a chance. But, not before “Queen Bitch Me” has been heard as well. She’s the one who really HATES that I am fat. HATE, even in lovely capital letters, just does not completely express what I feel about that part of myself.

When I was in college, I was notably thinner. I know that now, but it was not what I wanted to be. I did not want to gain that “freshman 15” or whatever. I had an extremely overweight roommate, and yet I completely lacked any sense of sensitivity about this issue. I tacked a sign on our mirror that stated, “Jan, you dipshit fat pig.” I thought I could shame myself into losing the weight. That never exactly worked, although I would contend that I’m trying to make it work now. We’ll see. I wasn’t embarrassed until one of my favorite professors came by for a tour of the dorms and saw it. I wasn’t embarrassed by having that up in a room I shared with a truly overweight person. I could be understanding about her weight, but when it came to my own, I was so ugly to myself that it spread to others. That was not the only occasion that this was the case.

So, without much further ado, cause you know I can “ado” all day in avoidance, here’s the letter I would write first. Bad words, bad grammar, and just rage all around….

Dear Fatty,

I loathe you. I wish you would die. I feel like all my hopes and dreams died when you sauntered into my life. I wish I could gouge you out of me. I imagine sharp knives slicing through fatty layers, layer upon layer, and ripping them to shreds. I imagine blood flying everywhere as I tear your horrid carcass from around me. I would flail with those blades like a warrior of old, like some TV ninja, tearing at the very flesh of my body.

I cannot believe how you let this happen. All the damn fucking excuses. You don’t exercise. I know. You can’t go out because of the smoke, and dancing on tables and partying used to be the easiest way to stay relatively in shape. You’re afraid of walking out into the country because scary men stop to ask for directions while masturbating. Really?? That might have happened, but when it did, you kept working out. I know you are sick. I do really know that, and I can be kinder about the fibromyalgia and the depression. I know they contribute to weight gain in some people, but I also know being so fucking fat means that you actually make those conditions worse. I know some of the very drugs you take to try to help with those conditions make it worse. Who the fuck cares? I don’t. Deal with it and quit the fucking whining. That’s all you are and all you’ll ever be.

And, forget about ever having sex again. I’m not sure anyone would want to wade through all that fat to find the appropriate parts, and I know for sure you would not like it because of how much I hate you, Fat Me. In my fantasies, I am not fat. That would not work if I was. I try to push you so far from my mind and imagine a self very different. I really do hate you. I have feared you my entire life, worried that you’d become a reality. And, like some monster out of a dream, you just stepped into my world, an almost unreal aberration. You are like a monster. You ARE a monstrosity. An embarrassment.

I wish you dead. Simple as that. I remember when I looked in a store mirror and wondered who that poor, fat, middle-aged woman was and rejoiced in my heart that I wasn’t her. Oh, but then I realized the woman I was pitying for being fat and unattractive was me. Me. Of all people. I was stunned, but still you continued to hang around, to grow, to overwhelm me.

I can remember my cousins wedding and feeling very pretty. I look at those pictures now, so nicely taken by my skinny sister-in-law, and I wince. I did NOT look pretty at all. I looked fat. And, maybe old, too. However, I think the old goes with the fat. I know that as I lose, I get more wrinkly, and that may be something else I have to deal with. I don’t like being old much, either, but being fat is worse. Being fat says something about you, or so it seems.

It does not mean that you live affluently, like perhaps it once did or like it does in some cultures. Fat people make less money. I could go on and on about the facts of being fat, but the one fact that matters to me is that it is ugly. It is weak. It is horrid.

I touch you, Fat Me, and I feel disgust. You are a filthy, messy, overwhelmed, overwrought, false thing. You walk around like you matter, like you used to do when you were pretty. And, instead, you are pretty disgusting. Revulsion would be the better word.

I would really like to cut you off. You’d suffer that way, and maybe die forever, not just physically, but psychically as well. You need to be gone from my reality and from my thoughts as well.

I so want to be beautiful, the heroine of the story. And, yet the mirror tells me this is not the case. I’m am the fat sidekick to my own life. I hate you and wish you dead. More, I wish you suffering.

I am trying to get out all of it, all the rage and anger and shame. Ah, yes. Shame. A favorite of mine. Thank you, Mom, although I probably have far surpassed you in this realm, for those initial lessons. Without proper shame, how do you know what you’ve done wrong? There is some truth to that, and those with no shame are dangerous. But, I carry it around me, wrapped in layers that may never fade away. Even if I lose weight, there will be that skin hanging down. How ugly that will be. It’s worse with the huge scar on my stomach. Fat and scars. Now, that’s a combo.

I cannot believe how fat I look in recent pictures. Friends post that I’m looking beautiful, and I thank them. I then make a mental note about how crazy they are because it’s so clear that I am NOT beautiful. I look fat, old, weighed down, unattractive.

Fat-Me, could you, would you, go away? I don’t think just wishing you away would work. And, how can I possibly love you? Really? You are disgusting. I don’t go to college reunions because I don’t want certain people to see me “fat.” I want certain people to either regret how they hurt me, how they lost me, or remember how unkind they were. That later is more for high school.

Hell, it’s simple. I want to win. Being the thinnest is winning. So is being famous or rich, but those two aren’t coming in quickly. They might someday. I sort of hope they do. But, being thin is attainable. Or at least it should be.

I’m rarely attracted to fat men. I see them much like I see myself. There are some exceptions, especially when I get to know them, but for the most part, I am disgusted with them as well. They can be famous movie stars, and if they are fat, I am disgusted. They can be kind and good to me, and if they are fat, my brain just cannot conceive of being with them. I tend to like skinnier men rather than big one, the soccer player as opposed to the football lineman. How could I even stand next to one of them if I knew I was so fat that I’d stick out on both sides if I hid behind him? Gross. Simple. Gross.

I don’t want to deal with Fat Me. I don’t like her at all. I don’t want to be compassionate. It’s what I do all day, and there are times when it just wears on the nerves. So, being compassionate to a part of me that is so completely out of control, so disgusting, seems almost impossible. It’s also not the only out of control part. I don’t seem to get out of control in fun ways, either. It quickly becomes an emergency, something urgent, something that is the elephant in the room. Literally. And, the elephant in any room I enter is ME.

I could write and write and write. No matter how scathing the words, I just am not sure I could explain how much I hate being fat. Someone reading this right now is saying, “Well, then lose the weight.” Fuck you and Fuck off! You skinny bitch, you don’t know a thing!!!! It’s not that easy. Truly. It’s a scary road, too. Change is difficult for humans. Other animals seem to adapt. We have adapted our personal environments so much that maybe we’ve forgotten how to adapt ourselves. Single-celled animals learn to avoid negative stimuli; they learn from consequences. Not us humans. We can do things over and over and over, getting into trouble again and again, but we don’t seem to learn very quickly. I know that’s true of my patients, and I know all too well it’s true of me as well. What the fuck is wrong with humans? We will indeed go extinct if we lose the ability to actually learn from our mistakes.

So, how do I learn from this one? How do I learn from carrying around more weight than I want? What is the fucking lesson you are here to teach me? Is it just your purpose to keep me safe, to keep me home, to keep me from venturing out for few of people seeing Fat Me? Is it a means of keeping men at a very cottage-cheese looking arms’ length away? What am I supposed to learn from you? If I learn it, will you really go away?

I can’t imagine that you would. I think you prefer torturing me, and that you enjoy it enough that you don’t even think of what’s going on. You get perverse pleasure from ruining my life, shaping my dreams, changing everything. And, I do mean everything.

As I write this, I am exhausted. Just worn out. Another fucking excuse even if it’s true. Don’t fact it. Don’t dare know that Fat Me is here. You really can’t avoid her, either. She’s you. Is she all of you or just a manifestation of a part of you, of your thought patterns?

I can’t get to the end of my rage. I can’t get to the end of the page. The slicing and dicing metaphore is good enough. Who am I kidding? That’s not a metaphor exactly because it is what I really, truly wish I could do. Let me go now and try the assignment. How do you even begin to find love for something you hate?


~ by Janice Holladay on November 27, 2011.

2 Responses to “Letter to my fat self, Part I………”

  1. It’s still hard to write the “good letter” even after this!!! I thought I’d get the “bad” all out, or at least enough of it that I could focus on the good. Sigh. Make myself finish Lesson Two……how does that bode for the book? But, things we avoid are often exactly what we need to do.

  2. Reblogged this on inspiredweightloss.

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