My office is located in a semi-residential area and right across the street live a very sweet old couple. They have lived in this house for 42 years and been married for 60 years (seriously) and a couple of times a week Mr. Brown brings us some tomatoes from his garden, or a cold soda, or something warm and delicious from Mrs. Brown’s oven. They like for us to call them Papaw and Memaw. Don’t you love them already? I know I do.
Today Mr. Brown came over and brought me 4 tomatoes, a giant yellow squash, an onion, and a story to tell. He was awful excited to tell me that apparently I have a twin in town!
“Young lady, you’ve got a twin! I saw her today at the grocery store and she looks just like you. I even grabbed Memaw and said Who does that look like? And Memaw said Well that looks like Jill! Yes ma’am she was a dead ringer for you. She’s not quite as big as you are, but she’s got dark curly hair just like yours and she really favors your looks!”
I know there was absolutely no malice behind his statement. He was just stating facts, I’m sure he didn’t mean anything derogatory by it and so I just let the comment slide and listened to him talk for a few more minutes before he said goodbye and hobbled away with his cane.
I know I have gained a good deal of weight. My pants are bigger, my underwear is tighter (seriously, the next purchase I make is going to be new underwear – sheesh!), and my reflection in the mirror is wider. I get that.
However, I guess I always felt like as long as no one acknowledged it, maybe it wasn’t so noticeable to everyone else. As long as we didn’t talk about it, it wasn’t really true and maybe I could lose the weight before anyone noticed (I never said I was the most rational person on the planet). But now it’s out there. Oh boy is it ever out there. And now I would like to find a big bear, follow it to it’s cave, and claim squatter’s rights. I WANT TO HIDE.
This isn’t the first time in my adult life that someone’s comment brought me low. Several years ago, during one of my “up” weight times, my friend’s 11 year old daughter asked me if I was pregnant. When I told her no, I wasn’t, she said “well you look pregnant. And tired and stressed. That’s why I thought maybe you were pregnant”. Is it wrong to want to smack an 11 year old?
That comment and today’s comment make me feel sad. I’ve been trying so hard to show confidence to the world and be funny and snarky in hopes that I could cover up the shame and sadness that this extra weight has brought me, but you know what? I’m not confident right now. I can bring the funny if I need to, and Lord knows there’s always an opportunity for me to be snarky, but that’s not how I really feel. Every morning when I wake up my first thought, my very first thought of the day is “I hate it that I’m this big”. Isn’t that sad?
So I’m done. I’m done being fat. I’m joining Weight Watchers in the next couple of weeks and I’m getting started on this weight loss journey AGAIN. Because I’ll be damned if I’m going to suffer through another comment like today’s. I. AM. DONE.