This is going to be a long post, but it’s worth the read.
Tonight, at about 11:00, Kiara, my friend Saa, and I went to the 24 hour McDonald’s in Wakefield. There were a bunch of burn-out high school/college age kids hanging out in front of it. Us three girls went in, ordered, ate inside, and then walked out. As we were walking back to our car, one of the boys said “Fupa” under his breath. (For those unfamiliar, “FUPA” is an acronym for “Fat Upper Pussy Area”, basically, for those of us non size 2s, the stubborn roll of fat that goes under the waist of your pants. Yep, somebody went ahead and made an acronym for that.) Nobody heard him but me, and I couldn’t believe that someone would actually say that to someone they never even met, so I kept walking and we all got in the car. As we were pulling out, he started shouting “Fupa! Fupa! Fupaaa! I like your fupa!” Kiara couldn’t hear what he was shouting, and neither did Saa, so we just blared music, and I flipped them off. A hot wave of shame and embarrassment flooded over me and I begin to come up with comebacks, that I would never say. (If you know what l’esprit d’escalier is, it applies here.)
I turned to Kiara and Saa, in shock, and what follows is basically what I told them:
“I can’t believe that just happened. 2 or 3 years ago, if that had happened, I’d be crying right now. It still hurts, I’m still hurt, but I know that that’s the worst they can come up with about me. And it’s not even that bad. ‘Hey you’re fat!’ Well NO SHIT, I just walked out of a McDonald’s at midnight, you think I can’t put two and two together? I thought this was a mother fucking Whole Foods! I am a smart person, a good friend, and a stronger person than whichever one of those boys yelled at me. [I quoted J.K. Rowling for a bit (http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/show/454548) and said I agreed.] I am grateful that I had parents who raised me to not say every stupid thing that comes into my head, and to respect others enough not to insult them ‘behind their back’ when they could hear it.”
I’m under no illusion. I know that I’m not skinny. But I run a few miles twice a week, do power yoga three times a week, and lift/workout 2-3 times a week. I’ve lost weight and gained tone this summer, and I could probably kick the crap out of that kid. But, clearly, life has already done so to him. I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing, exercising and trying to eat well, but I’ll be damned if I lose weight to spite that kid, or to conform to that idiot and his idea of beauty. Because I think I’m hot. I was hot five pounds ago, I’m hot now, I’ll be hot five pounds from now, ex fucking cetera. You think my “upper pussy area” is too big for you? I will find someone who, like me, doesn’t base my value as a person on it.
Thanks for reading! (The finger is not for you, it’s for the aforementioned douchebros)
I don’t know how I didn’t see this post until now (I haven’t been keeping up with my dash) but I want to reblog it in full, without a “read more” cut, because even though I rarely post anything serious on my Tumblr, this is important to me. Because I have dealt with strangers hating my body. But also because this person happens to be my sister, and my sister is strong and beautiful and anyone who thinks otherwise is just plain wrong.
It baffles me that just by daring to exist, and refusing to hate herself, this girl managed to anger a stranger that much. It’s almost awesome to realize how much power your body has to make people uncomfortable. But it is truly depressing to know how many ignorant people will look at someone they know nothing about, and decide that they should be mocked or made to feel worthless simply because their body doesn’t fit the mold of conventionally acceptable thinness. Luckily, this amazing girl has a sense of self-worth that has to do with so much more than just her looks, but every person has at some point struggled to deal with other people’s superficial judgements, and it’s bullshit.