Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Livng life as a "big girl"...

I am not small, never have been. I am not obese, more like tall-ish, heavily muscled with a protective layer of fat. I probably will never fit into anything from Express  or Hollister without a hunger strike or a famine. My size 11 feet will never fit into shoes you can grab off the display.  The only shopping worse for me than bathing suit shopping is unsuccessful bathing suit shopping.  But I have to remember that there are many things I can do handily, because I am big and strong.
I can push my car when I run out of gas.
I can still carry my daughter when she falls asleep in the car.
I can easily lug a bag of feed.
No jar can thwart my attempts at opening!
When the beamline computer desk needed adjusting, I leg-pressed it.
Changing tires is not a problem.
Crowds of people seem to part for me.
I can always handle all of the luggage that I regret taking..
  Upon writing this list, I start to wonder, why does society treat bigger people so crappily? I am pretty sure that 100 years ago, a farmer would have been thrilled to have me as a daughter. Yes, we have an obesity crisis today, but not all bigger people are created equal.  Just because I am not average sized, I receive a lot of unsolicited weight-loss advice. My mother was never very  helpful , when I was a kid, because she would go from shrieking  “take a smaller portion!!!” at dinner to making cupcakes or cookies, and offering me one, while not wanting to drive me to the barn/ pool, etc. In my adult life, I was told  “You really should exercize more,” by my OB-GYN, as she sat on her wheeled chair, glaring at my stats and a BMI chart. “But I ride almost every day,” I mentioned, before getting cut off. “Riding horses isn’t exercise!” she retorted. I would love to see her face if she was riding Cal or the grey mare! “Oh that sweat rolling off isn’t from exercise!”
If the judgments were limited to parents and doctors, that would be ok, but it’s not. People have a lot of stereotypes associated with size.  I am apparently lazy, unmotivated, dumb, poor, tasteless, unsophisticated, unworldly with a menial job! People get very confused when I tell them that I am a scientist.  Go figure!


  1. I think you're beautiful and brilliant ;)

    Oh, and you should def put that OB-GYN on a horse and have her in two point for a few laps around the arena.... and then have her lug water buckets and muck a stall or two. Not exercise, my Ass!

  2. Thanks! You have quite a knack for making me blush!

    She is not my GYN anymore, after that!


  3. Hi, I stumbled on your blog awhile ago and this just popped through my RSS (which might not have been working before? I don't know. Anyway, it is now!)
    a few thoughts
    1) riding horses is not exercise?!!! WTF is wrong with this person?
    2) I'm 5'2" and I once dated a 6'8" guy (yeah, it was comical). Anyway, we came to the basic conclusion that tall people suck at getting *around* crowds, while short people suck at getting *through* them. Enjoy the people parting like the red sea! :-P
    3) the nature of how we are socialized (particularly as women) is that there is always something 'wrong' with our body- shape or size or what-have-you. So there are dumb stereotypes every which way- though I'm not trying to minimize the specially obnoxious fatphobia which seems to bring out the worst in people. It sucks.

  4. Thanks for your comments! I do certainly have a problem getting around grouds- kind of feel like a bull in a china shop some days! Dumb stereotypes suck for all, I am sure. I wish people would look beyond the fat jokes and caricatures(sp?)!