Wednesday, July 6, 2011

It Doesn't Matter

There are some things that I am sure of. I am sure that nothing I do really matters if I am fat. It doesn't matter what I have done for others, what I have accomplished, what sort of difference I make in people's lives if I am fat. How am I so sure of this? Because for the last 35 years, this is the message I have been given. It is the message that has been repeated by numerous people who love me so I know it must be truth.

It hurts me that nothing I have done for others in my life matters, only the fat matters. I started volunteering when I was 10 years old and for over 30 years, I have helped the elderly, hospital patients, had a Little Sister, taught Sunday School, worked to fight against impaired driving, helped young women facing crisis pregnancies, was a youth and young adult leader, have served on numerous boards and committees, held officer positions on non-profit boards, have spoken at workshops, and counseled young women. 

I have helped to organize picnics for over 2,000 people and plan volunteer banquets for over 800 people. I have chaired banquets that raised over $100,000 for charities, assisted in other fundraising that has raised over $500,000 for schools and other organizations.

My blog reaches countless women and couples facing infertility and adoption. I have served on an adoption coalition to help make a difference in adoption laws, have planned fun, family events that have brought joy to children and parents in 2 states and in Canada. I regularly answer adoption questions and am a resource women seek out when they are infertile and/or seeking to adopt. 

It doesn't make a difference that I have helped people and made a positive and meaningful difference in the lives of others. All that matters is that I am fat. 

When I worked as a computer consultant for a major international retailer, IBM said the country-wide, bilingual system installation project I managed was the most successful in North America. In Oklahoma, I went from being a part-time call center agent to executive staff as a corporate project manager. At one point, numerous directors were arguing over who could have me on their team. I spearheaded the at home contractor project, taking it from zero to the successful and sustained program vital to the company it is today.

Last year, as a recruiter, I increased the number of tution-paying students by 35% in a recession. I was not even hired as a recruiter. I'm damn good at whatever I do. But that does not matter. All that matters is that I am fat. 

I remember being told I was fat when I was 6 years old. I do not remember a time when I was ever told that I was beautiful just being me. In putting together the pictures for my parents wedding anniversary, I saw lots of photos of myself. I didn't see a fat person. I didn't see this fat teenager or young woman that everyone said I was.

What I did see was a beautiful, slim girl that wore clothes 2 sizes too big because she thought she was fat. I saw a girl that never enjoyed her weight appropriate body because no one who loved her told her she had a nice body or nice shape. 

In recent years, people have told me that because I'm so fat, I'm at risk of a heart attack. I can't tell you how many times I have wished I would just die of a heart attack already. Maybe one day soon. Because truly, I have lived a life that didn't matter. Because now, I actually am fat.


CML said...

I formally protest. You are beautiful.

Mary Anne Mohanraj said...

You have bad friends. Or family. Stop talking to them. And if you read fashion magazines, just stop.

It's impossible to think clearly about your own body when others are shouting their own sick ideas at you.