My package of what, you may be wondering? Menfolk might assume I am referring to their crotchal unit–and yes, indeed, I am! This pertains to all humans, of any gender, but especially us chicks. Growing up a middle class caucasian with abundant estrogen and fun bags leaves us susceptible to a very foul, dangerous disease: the loathing and shame of our bodies. A rabid phobia of being “fat.”
I read some most excellent and compelling blogs this week that are mind blowing. One was penned by a male who had suffered life-impairing, profound shame due to the size of his penis for the majority of his 30 some years.
The other two were from women who repeatedly received compliments for looking so hot and fit when they were DYING!!!!! WTH? One was struggling to survive cancer, and another still can barely walk after her blood became septic during a vicious bout of ulcerative colitis. I can only find one of the links again unfortunately.
Please bear in mind I have never been morbidly obese, or close to it, and I was born with a Tazmanian Devil like metabolism. I did inherit my mumsy’s Buddha belly, though. These facts themselves render the sass and shit I have received over my weight and boobs since I was a kid into pure and simple nonsense.
My brothers both began telling me I was fat when I was 14 and wearing a size 5–at 5’7″ with small bones. This was after at age 11 in the middle of the friggin’ grocery store, one of Mom’s older friends stared at my tits and proclaimed in booming tones, “Well, Sharon, she is well developed for her age.” Hey, lady, can I get you a megaphone so you can announce my budding bosoms even louder? Later in life, weighing 138 pounds, my boyfriend (dumbass!) shared he considered me “rubenesque.” WHAT????? Rubenesque? I resembled the Botticelli of Venus about as much as I do the Queen of England. At the age of 30, I donned the most gorgeous turquoise string bikini to lounge in at the pool. With me weighing maybe 130 pounds, a young heathen male stared at my stomach, snickered, and sneered, “Jenny Craig.” This turd was insinuating I needed to join a weight loss group. Eat my pantaloons, ya brat!
And I won’t even get started about the things that happened when I was actually overweight. I don’t even know what the scale read then because I couldn’t hack discovering. I do know that I should have been in a size 14, but was still squeezing into a 12. It has been 23 years since I endured that. I can say I have finally mostly healed from the trauma of the verbal abuse I received from both people I knew and strangers.
Nor will I touch upon the eating disorder I had. I merely am sharing the tip of the fecal iceberg that a female of average, healthy weight has been handed. I am sure your story is very similar. And so:
I am encouraging you to LOVE YOUR PACKAGE, that precious body which is the temporary abode of your soul. No matter what kind of baloney you have been fed by others about your appearance, focus on this.
Appreciate all that is healthy about yourself, such as the ability to drink in the sight of budding spring flowers, stroll outdoors, laugh copiously, and hug your friends and family. Feel gratitude for digesting your vittles, wiping your own arse after making a #2, and the other humongously vast quantities of miracles your corporeal presence performs daily without even thinking.
I know of the Herculean task of tuning out the ever present drum beat of society’s message to be thin, be muscular, be fit……and if you aren’t, then you are somehow lacking. My favorite quote sums up perfectly how to surmount the challenge: “Your opinion of me is none of my business.”
If your physical self-image is spoiling your capacity to adore yourself and experience your heart’s desires, then please find a counselor or group to help you. If you are a college student and can’t afford a therapist, see if your school offers free counseling. In Indiana, you can dial 211 to reach a hotline which can refer you to sliding scale counseling, free groups or other services that can help you release yourself from the tyranny of societal ideals. Life is too damn short to not appreciate and treasure yourself.