Mama Deb (mamadeb) wrote,
Mama Deb

Synergy and a size rant

I just saw this week's House (thank you, kassrachel).

I'll get into my general reactions to it later under a cut-tag, but for now, and I don't think this is a spoiler, suffice it to say that the episode was about being fat and what it means to women and girls.

And then I read in ginamariewade's journal about the root cause of Terri Schiavo's death - that she became bulimic to lose weight because she was a little plump, and this reduced her potassium levels and caused her heart attack. (I refuse to get into the rightness or wrongness of her parents or her husband anymore. It's all moot.)

I'm fat. I'm 200 lbs, more or less (I don't weigh myself, so I don't know precisely) and I'm 5'1".

I kept a food diary for a few weeks, so I know pretty much what I eat, and what I eat is pretty healthy. I avoid sugar, I don't eat a lot of fat, we eat vegetables and whole grains, and I try to make at least one non-meat meal a week for dinner. I walk a lot because I don't own a car, and I go to martial arts three times a week - three hours of fairly intense aerobics. I limit my addiction to pistachios to Shabbat.

In other words, I don't shovel in food - unless I'm very hungry, I usually leave food over - and I'm not lazy. I'm also not fond of salad, but that's something else. :) My weight is therefore not a moral failing. It's just what I weigh. I think it means I have a very efficient metabolism that processes the food I eat too well, so it produces more usable energy than I need. If I'm ever in a famine (God forbid), this would serve me well, and I'd have to go on a famine footing to change that. I've done that. I've spent my days hungry, filling up on water and measuring everything and not sleeping well at night. And, honestly, if my blood sugar goes too low, I am not a pretty sight. I can feel myself getting irritable and almost irrational.

I hate that size has become a moral judgement. That gaining or losing a few pounds can change the way the world sees you or you see yourself. I'm fortunate - the one person whose opinion matters to me loves *me* - not because I'm fat, although that would not be any worse than being loved for my green eyes or my long hair, or despite the fact that I'm fat - but just for whatever reasons he has. Doesn't mean that I didn't look at myself at the house of mirrors that is my local mikveh and think that I am a fat blob (or that I didn't marvel when he hugged me when I got home and said, "You're so thin!"). Doesn't mean that there aren't times I'd love to be able to have more choice in what I wear, or to find bras that fit (44B. Not the most common bra size.) But I'm glad I have other ways of judging my selfworth - as do all of us here, whatever our energy levels or health or size.

Now, as for House:

Chase makes a rather adorable and convincing bastard, doesn't he? No wonder House (I knew he was bi!) wants to grab his rear. And I'm falling for Foreman. He's smart and he's kind. That's a killer combination.

(And yeah, they are *so* together. :))

I got and didn't get the B-plot. She's positive about her size. She has a husband who adores her and she has other lovers as well. But she'd rather drag around a thirty pound tumor than have a scar or be a little less curvy? I mean, my husband reassures me I'm still "squishy", but that's just not important for this. (And, you know - I wonder now. She knows her husband loves her, so why does she cheat on him? It could simply be wandering feet, but then she wouldn't be so concerned about changing her appearance. I think she's worked hard in the face of this culture of ours to prove she's attractive *as she is*,and part of that proof is the lovers she's taken. She likes having them on their own merits, though, so even though she's proved her point, she doesn't want to lose them. I don't know. I'm monogamous and happy to be that way, so I don't understand anyway.)

The little girl - oh, my goodness. I was her. I was the fat girl who had no friends, who spent her time reading or doodling. I don't have a handy tumor that would cure my weight problems, though, so I had to find science fiction fandom to change my social life.
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