A 200lb woman walks down the street gnoshing on an Adobo Bean Quesadilla from Whole Foods.
(a) ZOMG a fat girl eating!! How cliché!
(b) an athlete nourishing her body
For as much as I'm FatGirl vs. World, sometimes I just don't know if I'm FatGirl vs. FatGirl, herself. My mind plays tricks on me. My mind thinks it can push my body around, telling my body which days are good and which days are bad (oh, the nerve of it!). My mind projects its own insecurities into how other people view me. I wonder whether my own biases and perceptions are ones that other people have. I wonder if I'm doing all of this to prove something to myself or to prove something to the world.
|6 sub-10 minute miles? Yes please!|
I am a fat girl eating a fucking quesadillla because I just ran 6 miles and I know I need nourishment; I am an athlete trying to prove something to myself (that injury and all, I can transform my health and body) and something to the world (that fat people aren't lazy couch surfers sucking on Twinkies all day).
I'm constantly having to remind myself of
New Rule Nos. 4, 4a, and now 4b and 4c.
What is New Rule 4b? I am on this journey because of the courage I had when I took the first step.
In other words, had it not been for the fat girl that had the epiphany, I wouldn't be who I am today.
People are always telling me that I'm not fat, or that I should change my name to FitGirl -- but the truth is that (1) fat brain never leaves most of us and (2) I owe a debt of gratitude to the 240lb version of me that survived all the pain and heartaches, all the injuries and rehabilitation, and came out strong enough to say "okay, this is the last time...gotta make it happen." She's my hero.
What is New Rule 4c? The journey is not a competition; it is a community, a movement, a calling.
I admit it: I'm super jealous of all of your medals, all of your race shirts and bumper stickers, your milestones and your mileage. I'm not jealous in the I'm-gonna-trip-a-bitch way, but in the "I'll never get to run with you" way. But I really have to keep in mind that we are all doing this together, each in our own way -- proving to the world that we're not the number on the scale. We're much bigger and stronger than that. For whatever reason, we've all decided to share our stories, our highs and our lows, our victories and epic catastrophes. We decided we didn't want to go it alone.
And on a more personal level, okay -- so I have to do it slower because of my degenerative disc disease, but I'm still doing it. And you all are inspiring me to keep on going. Which brings me to the codification of New Rule 8 (though I've mentioned it before, I never formally made it a New Rule): Even on your worst day, you can be someone's hero.
So, so what if the world sees me as a lazy couch surfer sucking on a Twinkie? People even judge/misjudge everyone else. It's just a function of being human. It doesn't matter how perfect or imperfect you think you are, somewhere out there in the world is someone who will completely miss the mark. But, the opposite is true -- there's at least one person out there who can see the whole picture. If one person out there sees that a 200lb woman can run 6 sub-10 minute miles uphill on an elliptical and decides to start their journey because of it, well then, it's not for nothing. If on one of my bad days when I'm laid up in bed I can remember that I have done such epic feats, then it's not for nothing.
And all that jealousy? Really it's just admiration and a desire to achieve what every one of you have borne witness to: that is, the journey to be extraordinary each in our own unique way. There are no rules and no finish line for that, is there?