14 January 2013

the weight of words

For as long as I can remember, I have always been obese. Not just heavy or fat or curvy or voluptuous. Obese. It is a grotesque word that conjures grotesque images: I can recall back at my old job telling a co-worker I was obese and he didn't believe me, mostly because I didn't fit his preconceived notion of what an obese person looked liked. Which is part of the problem: when people use those words, they aren't using them from a scientific point of view, but a physical one. When they call a person "obese" or "fat," what they really mean is "lazy" or "gluttonous" or "ugly" or "gross" or "disgusting" or "sick" or...The problem with this, of course, aside from being incredibly narrow minded, is that you can't look at a person and know their story based simply on what they look like. Nor can you make an accurate assessment of their health based on a label. All of my 5Ks were completed when I was obese. Kinda puts things in perspective, huh?

Obese is the official medical terminology to describe my weight status according to the BMI Chart. And while the actual true effectiveness of a person's BMI as an indicator of health is debatable, it is what is being utilized by the health and medical field for now, so it stays. When Weight Watchers gives you your ideal weight range, that's where they are pulling that information. For me, it's about 120 - 150 pounds (different places change the low range, but 150 is the accepted healthy high weight for me).

For as long as I can remember, I have always been obese.

Until today.


As of today, not only have I lost a total of 132.4 pounds, but my BMI -- which started at 51.7 -- is now at 29.7. That moves me out of the obese category and into the overweight. And I did it without a magical pill or a crazy crash diet or a reality TV show. It can be done, dear readers. It takes destination, determination, deliberation. It takes time and patience and fucking hard work, but it can be done.

I developed early enough to require a real bra as a sixth grader. My size 18 prom dress had to be ordered from a catalog because department stores didn't carry that many plus size options back in 2000. I spent a decade wearing my age, so that by the time I was 29 years old I was wearing a size 28.

For as long as I can remember, I have always been overweight. But for the first time in my entire life, I'm fucking thrilled to be called overweight and will happily wear the label with pride.

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

10 comments:

  1. Congrats! I remember when I went into the overweight from obese range. It was a big deal for me.

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    1. Thank you! It is a big deal for all of us who have ever been there :)

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  2. That's AMAZING! If there's one thing universally loathed by all fat girls, it's the BMI chart. Congrats on working your way out of the obese range :)

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  3. That is pretty stinking amazing. WOW WOW WOW! I am so proud of you - and I really need to get with it as far as loosing weight goes. :) Thanks for the encouragement!

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  4. Firstly that is amazingly amazing as are you!

    Secondly don't ever get me started on BMI. The whole thing is a swizz because it doesn't take into account muscle. So someone like me, for example, throw the entire system off kilter and nobody knows what to say... useless thing!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you!

      And I know, the BMI is ridiculous. Body fat versus muscle mass isn't recognized as being completely different and more accurate indicators of health. It's so unfortunate it's become the industry standard.

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