tipping (& tossing) the scale

I don’t care about the scale.

I mean, I do, because it has these numbers and it means something to you, to your peers, to your family, to society.

I think of it now, and I still weigh myself daily but I know the scale is bullshit. It didn’t ever tell me how smart I was, how much I was loved, how well I took care of those who loved me, if I was funny, or a good cook or a good dancer or a good friend. It said ‘hey, this starts with a two so you’re basically shit, have a great day!’

I woke up one day and stood on it, cold because I was in nothing but my chubby girl granny panties, staring down at what I could see of my wide feet when I saw that number: 255. I was so sick of it I got dressed and went outside and threw it in the trash.

Liberating.

I told a friend about it, I laughed about it. I went back to a low carb diet and I was going to just do the thing. It was working but not the way it had before.

I’m about 33 and eating mostly salads, walking three to five miles a day, no packaged foods, eating organic, no drive thru windows and nothing helped, nothing changed it, nothing moved the scale.

I saw a doctor who was cute and French and told her of my weight woes, to which, at now 258 pounds, she told me that she wouldn’t worry if she were me, that I “have a very pretty face”.

Well, yea.

But that visit told me everything I needed to know about the world around me; it doesn’t matter what’s on paper, what matters is what you look like, what you show the world, what people see. She saw pretty, I saw blob; we were both right.

I didn’t go back to her because in my entire life every doctor I encountered commented on my weight, my predisposition for diabetes, my need to pay attention to my blood pressure, my cholesterol. I didn’t have issues with these things but I could, and if I wasn’t smart about it, I would. I used to joke that even at the eye doctor for an eye exam they’d say “You know, if you lost a few pounds, your vision might be sharper.” That never happened but the amount of medical professionals who made a comment or recommendation was many, so it was a blur of lab coats and poor signatures offering me just enough information to know that something had to be done, but not giving me the answer, or the tools.

When you’re fat – or more specifically, obese, there’s usually some other stuff going on, too. High blood pressure, high cholesterol, threat of diabetes, I mean plus you are super uncomfortable. A host of other things can (and will!) present itself, like anxiety, depression and all sorts of food addictions are possible, too. Not to mention what you miss out on – purely out of fear, lack of confidence or exhaustion from fat. You avoid things that might have a weight limit or size constraint. You start to avoid things before you even know if they’ll be an issue, you start avoiding your life.

Even worse? You may not even realize that it’s happening.

Which is worse than realizing. Instead you’re just tired and forlorn and lazy and sad and more anxious and then things are crazier, harder and just plain frustrating.

You think it’s everything else, and maybe for some people it is. I thought it was for me, but looking back on those times I think it was more me and who and what I was as a result of my weight than anything else.

Don’t get me wrong, plenty of overweight people live fulfilling useful lives full of love and success and happiness and I applaud them for their comfort in their own skin. I was just never really comfortable in mine.

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