I’ve been kind of AWOL lately….the auction stuff has been keeping me really busy, plus with Noah’s first birthday in *gulp* NINE days, I’ve been trying to plan that and we’re also moving to Edmonton on the 30th…..soooo that’s a whole lotta busy! Do not worry, though, I will try and post his 10 month and 11 month old posts, as well as an update post SOON.
However, this post isn’t really about Noah. It’s about me.
I know that this subject has been beat to death by everyone from the media to Tyra Banks herself. But it’s still hard to believe it until you experience it for yourself.
This was me two years ago:
This is me, now:
Can you see a difference?
Between then and now, I’ve packed on about….75 lbs? (ouch). When I graduated I was about 170 lbs, the smallest I had been since puberty. Even in my “heavy stage” in Grade 11, I was around 190 – 200 lbs. Now, though? I am right around 243 lbs, so approximately 15 lbs heavier than I was when I was 9 months pregnant with Noah. This year my weight has been yo-yo-ing like crazy, and I’ve been packing on weight much faster than I ever have (and I am someone who has always had weight troubles!).
But this post isn’t about that, specifically. It’s about the way people treat me because of my weight.
Like I said above, this subject has been beaten to death; I’m sure we’ve all heard about when Tyra Banks donned a fat suit for her talk show a few years ago. She was *shocked* to find out that people treated her like shit. Now, I can imagine that this was quite the experience for her. She was a supermodel, for pete’s sake! You’d have to be blind to not see how gorgeous she is. So, for someone who was used to being told how beautiful she was, I could see how being treated like that would be so jarring to her.
Now, me. I am used to being “the ugly friend”. I was that person for years. I remember going out on my 18th birthday weekend in a brand new black party dress (so exciting to finally have some place to wear something like that!) and I thought I was “all that and a bag of potato chips” (as my mother would say). As my best friend (at the time) and I walked into the bar, some jackass yelled out some comment about wanting to take “the blonde” (my friend) home. The entire night, we’d have teams of guys coming over to hit on us (her). Always, the Hot Guy and the Wingman. The WM would always talk to me so that HG could talk to my friend. It was beyond frustrating because it happened every single time we went out, without fail. I’d always be stuck with the ugly, slightly funny WM whose sole purpose was to keep me occupied.
I’ve never been a small person. I have always been taller than all the other girls, and my German heritage means that I have big bones. Yes, I know, you hear that all the time from big girls, but it’s the truth. My body is not meant to be a size 2! Like I said above, at my smallest I was 170. Now, I could have stood to lose another 10 lbs or so but basically that’s my ideal weight. 170 lbs is a lot for some people, but not for me. I was a size 9/10 in jeans, size 10 in dresses, size M – L in shirts. I really couldn’t get much smaller than that…possibly to an 8, but that’s about it. According to Hollywood standards, that would make me obese (not literally, but you know what I mean!). I still wouldn’t be able to find a sample in my size at a dress shop, but do you know what? That’s fine with me. I am aware of the limitations of my body!
Anyway, bringing it back to the topic. I’ve been really struggling in this past year to get a hold of my weight. It took me a month to lose 10 lbs back in June…but then I gained it all back in 2 weeks. In the past month I’ve gained 15 lbs. It’s enough to stress anyone out! To be honest, I expected to be one of those girls who are at pre-pregnancy weight within a month or two. I’m not really sure why, considering that it’s always been difficult for me to lose weight and keep it off!
One of the biggest issues that I’ve found in the past year is trying to cope with how the general public treats me.
When I was at my smallest, or even just before I got pregnant (190 lbs), I still was getting a fair amount of male attention. Not all of it wanted or welcomed, of course, but I was one of those who would just laugh and smile and wave it off as just another idiot trying to hit on me. (Seriously, I got hit on in a gas station one time….by a guy in PAJAMA PANTS!! If any of you reading this know anything about me, it’s that wearing pajama pants in public is one of my biggest pet peeves. So obviously this guy had no chance. I honestly don’t even remember what he looked like, just the fact that he was wearing pajama pants!). Women were nice to me (just in case you were thinking that I was going to only talk about men), bartenders served me first, I got in for free in some places that charged cover, I got drinks bought for me left and right, people wanted to be my friend, etc. Basically, I got used to being given preferential treatment, a “big fish in a small pond”, if you will. Sure, there were lots of girls much more prettier than me, but I was hanging around a 6/7 or so (if I do say so myself), and in Grande Prairie that’s sayin’ something (haha).
Anyway, so when I got pregnant I stopped going to the bar so much. Obviously, I wasn’t drinking anymore and I was usually tired all the time, whatever. The odd time that I did go out dancing for awhile, I still had some of the preferential treatment, people still knew me! As I got bigger, I stopped going, and also because it was awkward being “that pregnant girl at the bar”. Even though I knew that I wasn’t drinking, I felt like I was being judged by others. Along with that, people at bars get rowdy so I wasn’t interested in some drunk asshole falling on my rapidly expanding baby belly and possibly endangering my unborn child.
Once I had Noah, I was totally stoked to be able to go out again and actually have a drink. Anyone that was around me during my pregnancy knows that I craved alcohol the entire. time. and I would actually ask to sniff people’s drinks in order to quench my craving. I wasn’t completely satisfied, but it was good enough to keep the Pregnant Cravings Monster at bay.
I started noticing a difference within the first couple of nights out. I went up to 230 lbs with the pregnancy and then lost 20 within the first month or two. So I was anywhere between 210 – 230 when I would go out the odd time. It was a subtle difference, but a difference nonetheless. I stopped getting served first. The bouncers didn’t know me anymore. I wasn’t able to walk into any bar and point out at least 5 people that I knew.
As this continued, I started noticing a pattern. When I was with my hot friends and guys would hit on them, they would buy them drinks. Normal. But something had changed. Back in the day, those guys would buy me a drink too, to show off and just because I happened to be there. Not anymore. You could blame the state of the economy, but let’s be real: I am now too ugly for a pity drink.
Now the only guys that hit on me are 4’s or lower….those that have never been in a bar before, or decided to come out from behind their computer screens to try to socialize. The ones where you wonder if their mothers know where they are. The ones who need to get some sun and are almost invisible, they are so pale. They are the guys who are happy to be talking to a girl at all. You know the type.
Meanwhile, the guys who would have previously hit on me were now making fun of me, super rude if I happened to bump into them in a *gasp* crowded bar, or ignoring me completely.
Last night it finally occurred to me that this is what had happened. I was bartending at a Christmas party and my co-bartender was being hit on constantly, especially by the boss of the company we were bartending for. He even offered her a job (even if it was not a legit offer, obviously, because who actually offers a girl a job based on the fact that she is “cute as hell”?), but the most important thing to take away from this is that I would say something and he would literally look right PAST me and completely ignore me as if I wasn’t even there. Then, he would keep on talking to my co-b as if the sun shone out of her ass.
I was really hurt by that, you know? Like HELLO! I’m standing, right here, right in front of you!! I exist!
So it wasn’t until this morning that I fully thought about it and finally put my finger on it.
People (or, guys for the most part) treat me like shit because I’m not someone they want to sleep with. How freaking stupid is that? Can guys not act like normal human beings and think beyond what their penis wants? ** Are they really that one-dimensional?
To wrap this up….I’m not a monster, I’m a human being, ok? Just because I am bigger than your opinion on what “beautiful” is doesn’t mean I don’t matter. I’m not saying that I demand that every single person I come into contact with treats me like the sun shines out of my ass, no. I mean, have some respect, please! We may not be skinny but we have feelings too!
** I feel like I should throw a huge disclaimer in here…..OBVIOUSLY I am not looking for a man or anything, hello, I have a great one at home! But being hit on by creeps at the bar is just a part of life, and to not have that anymore is quite the kick to the self esteem. Which is stupid too, because obviously I should not give a shit what Random Drunk Guy thinks of me but I can’t help it….it goes back to when I validated myself through male attention. I’m fully aware that that is not healthy at all but I have really no clue where that stems from. The irony is that I call myself a feminist but I am bothered by the fact that I don’t get publicly objectified anymore. LOL!
Also note that I call myself “ugly” in a self-deprecating way. I truly don’t think I’m tragic looking, I’m just not Joe Blow’s idea of beauty. And that’s fine, I’ve never been conventionally attractive. I don’t expect men to fall at my feet and beg for my attention (although that would be nice….lol, jk).