DAY#114 - Perception
I believe being fat is not healthy. It is a poor life choice aided by our genes, bad habits, laziness and in some cases gluttony. However just because I have been over weight and made some bad choices hasn't made me less human. However, I have always felt that way. I used to think it was poor self image and in part it was. But to be honest, my poor self image has been aided by the world around me. Fat people are treated differently than skinny.
Skinny people are nasty to fat people. Not all of coarse, but many. The stares, the hushed side comments they don't think you hear or perhaps want you to. The fact that you can be ignored and totally looked over even by sales people on commission. Why would someone trying to make sales blow you off because you are fat? I have no clue, but it has happened to me. Does being fat make me less of a human? I think most people would agree that it doesn't. So why do they treat me that way?
As a kid, it was painful. As an adult looking back, I know that everyone in school felt awkward and needed to find security in themselves. The cheapest way to do that was to humiliate or be-little someone else while clawing your way to the top. The easiest targets were people who were not average. Being fat made you an easy mark. The verbal abuse and even the physical abuse was at times unbearable. They left deep wounds and to be honest even drove me to eat more as comfort. (I will not go into my own short comings in this area, to read more about this look for my post called Boca Grande)
As an adult, being heavy has not been fun either. Fat adults are judged much more harshly than their skinny counterparts. If people get to know me they may like me but the initial impression is a hurdle to over come. I even read rude comments on face book about "the fat lard in front of me at the grocery store" or see pictures that people have taken of fat people with their bellies hanging out of their shirt or in odd positions. I chuckle at first, then it sinks into me that they are really making fun of me too.
Two weeks ago I went to a festival in Michigan and had a good time. Even though, I had never met anyone there before in my life, I felt comfortable, welcomed, and struck up conversations easily with people. I am sure part of this was me and my new found leanness. As I reflected on my time there on my trip home I kept thinking to myself, "Would things have been different if I had been 100lbs. heavier?" From past experiences, I decided, YES.
I do not think being fat is healthy or a wise choice. I just ask you consider treating the people who struggle with over eating with the same respect you treat your skinny friends who just have not so obvious faults.
It also makes me glad that I have a Heavenly Father who looks at me through his Son and loves me fat or skinny just as much as he loves you.