Pretty Face (and so much more)

“Wow, you have such a pretty face!”

Pretty freckles, pretty smile, pretty hair

But apparently, on me, “pretty” only applies from the neck up

Because I have curves:

I have breasts, I have hips, I have thighs…

I have a stomach.

And to your eyes, that makes me damaged

An outlier in society, a charity case

The “fat” girl.

 

My weight has defined and contorted my character into forms I never chose.

Suddenly I’m expected to be the comedic relief

I’m expected to be the nice girl who’s always there for everyone else

I’m the exceptional friend who’s loyal and true

Because god-forbid I’m fat AND a bitch

 

Oh no, it’s as if I must EARN the presence of skinny people in my life

By being the token fat friend and living up to the itty-bitty size-2 box they try to force me into.

 

And when we hang out,

I can watch lustily as they gulf down cookies and sweets without a care

But when I want a treat, it’s always challenged

“Are you really going to eat that?”

 

Are YOU really going to eat that?

Since when did my eating habits become the concern of anyone else but me?

 

It’s because in our society, taking up more space only earns you a tighter set of expectations

Constricting you, strangling you, until you’re less than what you are, less than what you can be.

 

Eventually, your potential is quelled and your fire extinguished

When you start believing that the double digit number printed on the tag of your jeans is a stronger indicator of who you are, of what you stand for, than the thoughts blooming in your mind and the words escaping from your lips.

Losing weight, essentially working to diminish the rare amount of you on this earth, becomes your only goal.

 

Get good grades. Watch my calories. Find a decent job. Get to a gym 5 times a week. Start a family. And what if my children end up looking like me?

 

When you’re fat, you’re expected to put the rest of your life on the backburner. But I’m not about that life. I’m over it.

 

I’m a size 14. Extra Large. Plus size.

And you know what? You’re welcome.

It only means that there is that much more of me to go around

There is an extra amount of love in my heart

And a surplus of the character I choose for myself

A greater capacity for the knowledge I’m thirsting for

And a whole lot more woman, if ya know what I mean.

 

I may be large, but I’m pretty. Head to toe, and everything in between. Just as uniquely pretty as any girl thinner than me or any girl larger. My stretch marks and round stomach might not be everyone’s image of beauty, just as blonde hair or a flat chest aren’t universally ideal.

 

We’re human. We come in different shapes, sizes, colors. Each and every one of us is genetically different, an exclusive fingerprint on this earth. How dare we challenge a person’s physical appearance and accuse them of not being pretty, solely because of the number printed on a tag?

 

We are all beautiful, even me.

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