Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Random Rants and Dubious Doubts

I am obsessed with food. I just am. That is the truth of my daily existence. I am constantly thinking about food. How much time has passed since I last ate and how soon can I reasonably eat again? What will I eat next? Where am I going to eat? Will I cook or will I order in? I am happy - what can I eat? I am sad - what can I eat?

The question of whether or not I should be obsessed with food is really no one else's business. It is just a fact of my life that I deal with the same way I deal with everything else in my life like flossing and determining the best location in my kitchen for the compost bucket. I just deal with it privately and with as much grace as I can muster.

My point is -- it's my life. I don't get in your face about how much makeup you wear, but since you asked -- I think you are wearing too much foundation. You look like a clown with that heavy pancake on your face, that shade of lipstick makes your skin look green, and heavy blue eyeshadow went out in the 1970's and honestly, it didn't look good back then.

Haters Not Welcome Here. People who post comments on this blog about what other people eat, how much other people eat, whether or not they should eat what they eat, and what type of person is a person who eats whatever it is that you think is the wrong amount of food will just not be tolerated and will be promptly deleted. I am horrified by the virulent comments that I delete on a regular basis. This is a free country and your viewpoints are protected by the constitution. I'd like to remind you that mine are too.

I don't talk much about my eating here and maybe I should but I fear that once I start to be truthful about obsessive eating then I will want to talk about painful memories like the misery of childhood taunting from kids at school, teachers and even my own parents. Once I start to openly write about weight loss and weight gain I will want to talk about all those emotions that we share but that I would rather intellectualize about in terms of society and philosophy. Once I start then there is no going back and I would so much rather tell you about the new Danskin plus size line of Activewear and Dancewear in sizes up to 4x. Finally something to wear to Big Moves classes! Click here to purchase Danskin Women's Dancewear. Enjoy Free Shipping on orders of $75 or more!

Fashion is fun. Fat hatred sucks.

I don't come to your house and make fun of your curtains but now that I've brought it up...you should probably reconsider those sheers in your bathroom.

Am I A Fat Traitor? If I (a) have gained weight and (b) I want to lose weight then am I a traitor to the fat positive cause? I think that many of my body positive blogging friends would say yes. I used to be thinner. I don't hate myself and I actually spend an embarrassing amount of time admiring myself in mirrors. I will tell anyone who stands still long enough to listen that beauty comes in many shapes and sizes, and yet I still think about losing weight. Marilyn Wann told me to stop thinking about losing weight and to surrender all hope of being thinner. Kate Harding told me that my desire to be thin is based on pure fantasy. And yet I still think about losing weight.

I do agree that my desire to be thinner is completely connected with societal pressure and, as Kate shared so eloquently when she wrote The Fantasy of Being Thin I agree with her that I want to be thin because I imagine that I will magically become a more fascinating, more beautiful, more creative woman when my body fits some ideal size and I know that this is complete bullshit. I-agree-completely-with-every-word-Kate-said. But I still want to be thin.

I told my husband last night that "I want my body back." Yes I said that out loud. To a man who sees me - yes he really sees me - and loves me. I have gained 35 pounds since we met. I have no children but I did spend a year caring for my sick father and I just couldn't leave the house, I couldn't work and I stayed home with him and I ate. But my father died two years ago and I have gained more weight since then.

I know my fatosphere blogging friends might be thinking, "You've gained weight? So what?" But you don't understand I've gained 35 pounds! I know that some of my fatosphere friends might be thinking "You've gained 35 pounds? Who are you to complain? I've gained...insert number of pounds here! No matter. Each of us has our own thing about our bodies and this is mine.

I shared with a friend recently that at one time I was so consumed with self-loathing that I had to force myself to say nice things about myself in the mirror before I left the house just to be able to function through the day. And not just nice things about my personality but nice things about my body. I've been asked to write a longer article about that experience for another web site and honestly I've been avoiding it because it's so hard to go there.

Writing about those days will mean reliving them in some way and it is just so damn hard to do that.

Lurkers welcome. I know you are here because Google Analytics tell me you are. You don't post comments but I know you are reading and I thank you. Please don't do anything you don't want to do and if you don't want to comment then please continue to read and not post comments. I just wanted to take a moment to say hello and I appreciate you. I really really do.

13 comments:

Roberta Lipp said...

Me too.

I guess we need to form a new club, if we're kicked out of the other one.

Remember that beautiful jacket that doesn't even fit me??? Yeah, that one. I'd like it to fit me without altering it. I'd like less belly. I feel distorted.

And I love my beautiful curves. A lot of them, anyway.

Meowser said...

I can't speak for anyone else on the fatosphere definitively, but I for one never, ever blame anyone for wanting to be thinner. And I don't think I'm the only one who feels that way. I'm pretty sure a lot of the women you are thinking of have Icky Body Days themselves. In a world where thinness is beauty, thinness is credibility, thinness is talent, thinness is love, thinness is health, thinness is pretty frigging close to immortality, how can any woman completely escape them?

I want Icky Body Days to be such a thing of the past that future generations will laugh at the very idea of them. They deserve that. Hell, so do we. I think what makes a difference now, in the present where Icky Body Days rule the female psyche, is acknowledging that we deserve that freedom.

fillyjonk said...

I mean, did you gain weight because you stopped dieting, or did you gain weight for reasons like changing medications, being depressed, having to stop exercising, etc?

If you stop dieting and gain weight, you can WANT to lose weight, but it's probably not gonna happen without renewed and increased dieting fervor. If you gained weight through atypical eating and exercise (even 35 lbs isn't particularly unrealistic for that) or something like that, you might just rebound to your setpoint. I've lost about that amount in the last couple years, and I don't consider myself a traitor; I consider myself a person who recently went off Lexapro.

Corinna Makris said...

Ahhh Roberta, thanks for that. I do love that jacket and I have outfits that I love that I haven't been able to wear this year. I know what you mean.

I gained weight because I stopped my usual day-to-day physical routine and ate more. When I'm down (my dad died, my best friend died) I look for comfort in the fridge. When I'm up (I got married, This Lush Life and this blog are very exciting projects that bring me a lot of joy) I look to celebrate in the fridge. Taking care of my dad kept me sedentary (at least it kept me in the house a lot).

fillyjonk I now that I am back at a full time job and just eating less that you are right and I will get back to that set point.

Thank you meowser. You are so articulate. Being thin is pretty frigging close to immortality. sigh. Yeah - I just turned 40. always thought that I would be a woman who would age gracefully and embrace the experience but the other day I pulled out two white hairs.

My question is: Am I a traitor for wanting to be thin? I think not because as meowser said - how can we escape it?

Devi said...

I actually get quite frustrated with the whole notion of traitors and who belongs in fat acceptance. I think it's short sighted and, honestly, keeps the message and reach smaller than it could be.

I actually managed to get quite beyond what I think is my natural set point through binging and inactivity. Is it wrong, then, that if I statr exercising and making better food choices that I take comfort in my body changing and getting back to where I suspect it would have been had I not had those issues?

I was expressing these frustrations a few weeks ago when my blog was labeled as a "weight loss blog". Someone, very kindly, told me that my voice may not be perfectly in step with fat acceptance but that it didn't mean it wasn't an important voice.

littlem said...

Are you good with makeup shades? Will you help me come do my face?

Pleeeeze?

Julia said...

I could have written this entry. All of it. I'm obsessed with food. I love my curves and feel better about my body than I have in years, but I still catch myself thinking "if I just watch what I eat a little more and hit the gym a couple more times a week, I could probably drop ten pounds." If you're a traitor, so am I - but I don't think we are at all. No one said this body acceptance thing was going to be totally easy, but we're on the right track if we're asking these questions and being honest with ourselves.

Mim said...

I'm one of those lurkers :) What you've written here resonates very strongly with me, thank you for your courage in sharing your thoughts, I appreciate being able to read them!

JoGeek said...

*Zen Hugs*

Telle said...

I totally hear you. I've gained about twenty-five pounds over the past three months. I know that it's mostly because I've been dealing with some rather serious depression and been both over-eating to feel better and over-eating to hurt myself. But I'm also worried that once I get a handle on the depression, those pounds won't just quietly go away.. that I'll be stuck with them. And now hardly any of my clothes fit me and I miss my clothes and I miss how my body was.

And part of the problem is that I have NO IDEA what my set-point might be. All through high school I was 155 (and thought I was fat). Then I went on the pill and promptly gained 10 pounds. Then I went away to college and after four years I was up to 215. Then I started working and got up to 245. Then I did Weight Watchers and got down to 221.. then got pregnant and ended up at 235. Did Weight Watchers again and got down to 196.. got pregnant again and ended up at 226. Did Weight Watchers again and got down to 195. Quit Weight Watchers and hung out around 195-198 for a good year without doing anything special to maintain it. Then my depression kicked in HARD and I'm at 222.

So once I manage to get the depression under control and actually manage to live more of a HAES life with regular movement and balanced eating, where is my weight going to land? I have no idea. But I miss my 195-198 body. I was actually able to shop in "regular" stores then.. and for the first time in my life I really felt like I was hot. Now I just feel round.. and the weight's come on so quickly that it really feels like something "other" rather than my body. This doesn't feel like ME.

Corinna Makris said...

I have it connected in my brain that any unpleasant experience is directly related to my body shape.

That wouldn't have happened if I wasn't so fat.

That wouldn't have happened if my boobs weren't so big.

That wouldn't have happened if I wasn't so tall.

That wouldn't have happened if I was just a little taller.

That wouldn't have happened if my hair/eyes/face/hands/feet/weight/height was just fucking different.

I've worked really hard to love myself and to see that I can have anything that I want -- looking exactly as I do.

And then some days I have, as meowser put it "Icky Body Days."

Thorn said...

Are you a traitor?

To which cause? To fat acceptance? To feminism? To your preferred political party?

First, I think more important than any of those things is making sure you are not a traitor to yourself. Which means not exchanging running yourself down with diet talk and self-hatred for running yourself down with telling yourself you're not a "good enough" FA activist or whatever.

Secondly, I think as Meowser said, we all have days when the dominant paradigm gets us down and we think, "Good grief, why can't I just assimilate instead of having to swim against the current all the time?"

Which doesn't make us anything but human. No one can be a revolutionary 24/7 without burning themselves to a cinder. Some days, we're just women and men, living our lives and doing the best we can with whatever tools we've got.

jen said...

I seem to remember having a similar conversation with you at BlogHer -- it really doesn't matter what the Fat Acceptance crowd thinks of your goals, what matters is what you think.

No matter what you do, you will never get the rest of the world to unanimously approve.