April 9, 2011

Open windows

Two blog posts in one day. Something must be brewing.

By all accounts, today should be fantastic. I finally got the nerve up to send Jack a W.I.D.T.H. picture for his blog, I exchanged e-mails with Ben about my nerves and the weather predicament for tomorrow's race, and I noticed how little my reflection is becoming as I went to the grocery store to restock my fridge with fruits and veggies for this week.

The sun is shining. There's a cool breeze. And everything in my life is fantastic right now. I look good. I feel great. There is so much love in my life, from my family and my friends and my awesome blog community. Every day, I feel so hopeful and positive - even when I struggle, I feel loved and supported.

Walking back from the grocery store, I stood on the curb waiting for a light to change so I could cross the street. A brown car full of young men turned a quick corner, windows down.
"Fat bitch!"
My iPod was on, but not loud enough that I couldn't hear it. I kept my cool until I got home, where I dropped my bags on the kitchen floor and then went into my office to sob.

pauvre con
Do jerks have x-ray vision? Because while my bags were mostly full of fresh spinach, mushrooms, zucchini, blueberries, apples, tomatoes, and an onion ... there was also a bag of white chocolate chips. My friend is coming over tonight to make dinner before we race tomorrow, and since I have wanted to bake lately, I figured this would be a good way to bake and still be responsible: we'd bake together, I'd eat one, and send the leftovers home with her - she has a couple of roommates, and I bet the boys would love some cranberry orange white chocolate chip cookies.

I was just thinking the other day how nice it was that no one had yelled anything mean from a car window in nearly six months. In a matter of a fraction of a second, I felt like I undid all the work of the past thirty-six weeks. It doesn't matter what I look like today - for how I feel, I may as well weigh 345 pounds again.

I went home, baked the cookies, and ate three big ones - because my logical brain quits when heartache starts, and as long as I feel as sad as I did when I was my biggest, I might as well get the full experience and eat until I feel invisible again.

four exes or no exes. you're still large.
This hoodie used to be tight on me. This is the second winter coat I've outgrown this season.

This does not matter - all people see is what I am now.
I have not won yet.

Everyone tells me I look great, and sometimes I believe it.

But this does not matter - I only look great comparatively.
I look better than old me, but I don't look good.

I have not won yet.

My pants used to be size 28. Now they're 14.

But this does not matter - size 14 is still plus size.
I have not won yet.

I used to weigh 345 pounds. My BMI was 55.7 - "super obese." Now I'm 217 pounds.

But this does not matter - super or not, a BMI of 35 is still obese.
I have not won yet.

I keep talking about winning like this is some competition. The jerk says something that hurts me, so I have to eat 750 calories worth of cookies - anything you can do, I can do better. This really bothers me.

Also upsetting: maybe it's because I'm a language teacher and I notice odd little things, but I just realized that I wrote "I'm 217 pounds." As in, "I am 217 pounds." I am not 217 pounds. My body is. Physically, I'm just a person - one who is in transition. But I'm a lot of things beyond my physical self. I'm a daughter and a sister and a friend and a teacher and a blogger. I'm strong and I'm brave and I'm committed. And I'm responsible and accountable - so yes, I made cookies, but only a half-batch, of which I only ate three cookies, and they are all noted in my daily food log.

So jerk, say what you want when you drive down the road today - because I'm also a runner. A runner who is going to run the heck out of five miles of Chicago streets tomorrow.


Christie Farrar said...


It sucks when someone says that to you. I'm so sorry to hear that someone was shallow enough to say that kind of thing. But honestly- do you want his approval? If he's so quick to judge you as a bitch- let alone a fat one- it shows that he has no strength of character.

I'd say you are about the furthest thing from a bitch. You aren't even 'fat' anymore. You are a size 14. I weigh 217 also, and I am still a 16/18 so you are doing fantastic. Besides, cookies are good! You've had your three though.

Jess said...

Ugh... I hate, hate, HATE when people are such a*holes! I am so sorry. You are doing AMAZING! Keep up the good work and tear up the road tomorrow!

downsizers said...

I feel bad for you. They made themselves look bad, not you. We can't let others' opinion of us become our opinion of us. Our self-esteem can be so fragile especially when we have come so far and achieved so much. As you continue and become more and more comfortable in your new body, comments like that won't affect you because you KNOW. Don't give them another thought--small pleasures for small minds. If that is what they call fun, they will continue to show the world what they are - bray, donkey, bray.

Maia said...

I'm so sorry that someone said that to you, because you look fantastic. I know exactly what you went through though and bravo to you for you're outlook. Isn't it amazing how far you've come not only physically, but also emotionally? Would you have ever been able to pick yourself back up after someone made that comment to you a year a go? If you are anything like me, you would have dwelled on it for days, if not weeks. But now, yes you had a moment, but you picked yourself up and kept living life. Good for you.

Chris Pugh said...

Bah... it's things like this that really make me hate people sometimes. I've had a few of these types of comments thrown my way, but as a guy, I don't think we get them as often as women do.

Your comments about your body being in transition really made me stop and think about how I see myself, which is generally not favorable, they reminded me to recognize that I am not JUST my body and that the real me is on the inside.

Best of luck on your race tomorrow! I hope you kill it!

Anonymous said...

Nothing makes me angrier than people that need to put other people down to feel good about themselves. Just another incentive for you to kill your race tomorrow. Good luck!

♥ cheryl elisabeth said...

I don't understand why people have to be that stupid - like, they must have some serious issues to think that doing stuff is alright.

I'm so sorry you had to endure that, but you have accomplished something great. Even if you're still considered 'obese', you're doing something about that, and have already done so much. There are tons of people out there who don't have the dedication and desire that you do.

Pretty Pauline said...

This made me cry. I'm so sorry it happened, and I'm so sorry it seems it used to happen. I would've eaten, too. :(

Cat said...

You do not look great only compared to the old you. You look great period. I don't even consider you fat.

Anyone shouting out of car windows at strangers is a total idiot. Just think of the kind of personal problems they must have if they think that's acceptable behaviour. They must feel really bad about themselves.

I know you can't talk back at passing cars but I've got to the stage where if people hiss something as they pass me, I spin round and say loudly enough so everyone within a couple of blocks can hear:

I may be fat, but you're stupid: and I can go on a diet. (This is the clean version obviously.)

timothy said...

that sucks, but don't you dare let it get you down. you're gonna do great at the run and you HAVE won already, maybe you're not done but you have changed your life. you are half the size and twice the woman you were. you are strong and beautiful, there is nothing you can't do you've proven that! try getting mad, you've a right to be then use that anger to fuel your goals. some of my best workouts come from anger.

Myndie said...

What losers. I'm so sorry Mary.

Mrs. O said...

YOU ARE NOT FAT! It's hard to convince ourselves that the body image we have in our minds isn't the one that's on the outside, especially when we've been overweight or obese for a long time but you need to take a good look at how far you've come in your weight loss journey.

I suffered for a year at a job where co-workers and even subordinates were constantly making fun about my weight. Many times I wanted to take a bat and bash their heads in. By December 2009, things got really bad. Then a friend of mine reminded me of something: most people that say things like that do it because they are so angry with their lives that the only way they can make themselves feel better is by making someone else feel bad. And it was true. Those ladies were unhappy with their personal lives, with their finances, with their spouses and even with their weight. So when things got to the point that I wanted to die so I wouldn't have to hear them anymore, I'd remind myself of all the positive things I had in my life that they wished they had. It would actually cheer me up a bit.

Those fellas that made that comment must have some really sad lives because they only way they can make themselves feel better was to say so horrible to someone they don't know and who actually isn't even fat (size 14 is the average size in America).

Heather said...

Don't listen to those jerks! You are doing an awesome job! What your telling your self about not says "i am ..." but your body is, I think that is great don't own it. Whenever I get sick I don't own it I say my body is sick not me that is sick. Or I get sick. It is a great feeling to put on your clothes an have them feel loose. Hope you had a great run!!

Amy said...

awww Mary I'm so sorry to hear that this happened to you. You are going to run the shit out of that race tomorrow!!!

Best of luck!!

Julie said...

B.E.A.U.T.I.F.U.L. that is you. P.O.S.I.T.I.V.E. that is what I am that you will run that race and do awesome. Jerks, are out there and they hurt no matter what. But you don't have to believe them because you are S.M.A.R.T. and you know better because you are Beautiful, positive and smart.
GOOD LUCK on your run. I can't wait to hear how you did.
Take care and God Bless!!!

Rusti said...

You are small!!!! In my opinion a size 14 is NOT plus size. You are beautiful and have worked very hard to achieve what you have! We, your readers, are very proud of you and believe in you!

Shannon said...

Hi, Mary. As I was reading this post my husband walked by and saw the pics of you crying, and asked - "Who's that girl, and why is she crying?". I told him what those idiots had yelled to you, and my husband said - "What's that about? She's not even fat." My husband knows nothing about you, and had never laid eyes on you until he walked by and looked at my computer. So, first impression - he did NOT see a fat person. I just wanted you to know that.

I'm so sorry for what you went through today. Some people are cruel and ignorant. You didn't deserve that. You never did, and you never will.

Put today out of your mind, and enjoy your run tomorrow! You're going to do great! I'll be thinking about you!!

Retta said...

This was so touching.. it was hard not to cry with you. I've had that happen too many times, and I know the pain of it. I'm so sorry this happened to you. I'm glad you worked through it, and ended with such a determined affirmation of your worth.

I know your run tomorrow will be a triumphant one!

Tim said...

I'd rather believe the huge amount of positive comments on here than the one comment from an idiot.

Keep your chin up Mary, be proud of who you are and what you've achieved...cos we are all proud of you.

Good luck with the race! :)

michelle said...

what a horrible thing to have experienced *hugs* you are amazing, no matter what some random assholes say

jayme @ Losing Half My Weight said...

complete morons. the lot of them. fuck 'em. they have no idea who you are, what you've been able to do this year, and that you're going to go run a race that they probably couldn't complete themselves. fuck 'em.

that said, though, i've wondered what i would do if that happened to me now. it hasn't happened in a while, but i know i'd feel the need to fight back in some way, to tell the world that while i may still be fat according to their standards, they have no idea of how i'm changing. kinda hard to do that to guys in a passing car, though, i must admit.

rock the race and show the bastards of the world what a real woman can do!

Caron said...

Hang in there. You are doing GREAT!!

Anonymous said...

Hello from India :)
I've been following your blog for quite a while now. And your journey has been inspiring. For a 100-kg girl thousands of miles away, who because of insulin resistance has managed to lose JUST 2 kilos in 5 months, your success has been truly awe-inspiring. So remember for every jerk that shouts that, there's a person going "I wish I could lose weight like she does".
Keep going...

Alexia said...

I know how painful it was for you, but if anything, remember you're doing AMAZING (it's so clear!) + that we should feel so sorry for people like those boys.

marisol said...

Your race is over by now so I hope you kicked ass. I also wish I could kick that jerk's ass as well. You know, you will lose the weight. And even with the weight, you are a wonderful person. But he will be an jerk for the rest of his life. I feel pity for people like him.

Angry Fat Mom said...

I saddens me that people are so cruel. I have been fighting with my weight since childhood and I have heard every insult in the book growing up. Unfortunately those mean comments never get any easier to hear.

But you have said it. You are more than just your body. You are a strong woman and you will overcome this. And I'm sure you kicked major ass on your race!

Anonymous said...

People are assholes. There's no two ways around this. No matter how thin you get, there will always be some jerk with a chip on his shoulder riding around waiting to shout mean things at people just to be FUNNY or show off in front his friends. You have done AMAZING and all you can do is keep on going and know that you are in transition. You can't let a jerk like that ruin all your hard work.

Ellie said...

I can't believe that someone would say that. It is just super rude, and please don't take it the way you are, because even at 155 I get rude boys in speeding cars yelling to me I am fat.

You are making amazing strides and to hear you bash your accomplishments is just heartbreaking. You aren't where you want to be yet, but you are on the right track and you know that.

Une femme en santé said...

Allo Mary,
C'est vraiment dommage que des cons comme cela nous affectent autant. Moi aussi j'ai bien de la peine quand quelqu'un me crie quelque chose par la fenêtre de sa voiture. Mais en même temps je me dis que c'est un comportement assez peureux. Mais n'empêche que ça me tire quelques larmes.
Il faut les laisser faire et se dire qu'on est 1000 fois meilleurs qu'eux. Car ils ne savent pas par où on a passer ;-)