Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Here's What It's Like To Not Be Skinny ... Or Fat.


According to the media there are two types of bodies in this world: really skinny and really fat.

There is “Hollywood skinny”, in which women are meant to be a size zero, “fat” is Kim Kardashian (5’2” about 115 lbs) and “fit” is often used to describe “anorexic”. It’s then made worse by photoshop, a fun little process in which a hardly-attainable body morphs into a literally-unattainable body -- except on a computer screen -- and is broadcast out to women everywhere. Usually in an attempt to sell something: something that makes us skinner, prettier, younger, stupider*, whatever.

Of course this is not new, the female population has long been clamoring against the “skinny bitches” in La La Land for quite some time. Then, at some point, a response was created to make “us” all feel better about ourselves for not fitting into some silver screen bullshit. A small corner of the media fought back and claimed, “fat is beautiful”. Companies like Dove stood up to those bony bullies and featured “real women”. Hashtags were formed, #stopfatshamingnow. TV shows with titles like “My Big Fat Fabulous Life” were green-lit, and articles like this one  spread like wildfire across social media.

Still after all this ... I watch TV, I see the ads, I look at the art and none of these bodies look like mine. My thighs, my stomach, my boobs are nowhere to be found.

I am not a size zero or two or four -- but I am not a size 22 or 24. Almost none of my friends are either. In fact barely anyone I know fits into the “really skinny” or “really fat” category. So when can we actually celebrate regular?

I didn’t use the word “real”, because technically every body is “real”. I said regular, as in medium, as in “sometimes I look hot” and “sometimes I look bloated” and “sometimes these jeans fit” and “sometimes this dress looks good (minus my food baby)” and "sometimes dammit I need to wear sweatpants" bodies?


See, I am not on board with the amount of pressure placed on women in this country to be thin. Some of us are naturally curvier, thicker, and more muscular (we usually make the best athletes). But we are not celebrated in mass media, instead we are told that smaller is better. And let me tell you, waking up and hating yourself everyday because you don’t feel good enough because your pant size is not small enough is downright debilitating. Your waistline is not your worth.

However, in fighting against these pressures, I cannot get on board with my overweight, obese sisters-from-another-mister either. I don’t think morbidly obese is beautiful. I think the individuals within -- underneath layers of fat which are surely part of a much bigger problem -- can most definitely be beautiful and I would never shame someone for being obese, but I would not celebrate it either. Fat is not beautiful. Healthy is.

So where is our regular-body-celebration? Where are my size 5 to 12 women at? The femmes who can still rock a semi-tight dress, but freak out a little when it comes to bikini season.

For instance, it’s hard for me to buy pants because my butt is pretty big (like really big), but my stomach is actually flat (I work out). Apparently though you can't have a big butt in this world without some designer assuming you have a gut to match (it's called Native American dumb ass).

When I look around at the women in my boxing class, my dance class, my yoga class -- there are not a lot of “thigh gaps” but there are a lot of fit chicks. They are not Hollywood skinny. But they are all fit.

None look like Megan Fox or Emma Stone (seriously if you've met actresses in real life, they are super tiny), but none look like Melissa McCarthy either. It would be nice if “real body” didn’t have to mean “fat body”, if instead we could look at women who still look pretty good naked, and not shame them for that tiny roll of fat than happens when they sit down. (You know what I am talking about).

As Ronda Rousey -- an awesome MMA fighter and pretty hot chick who weighs about 140 lbs (fat by Hollywood standards) -- once, said “Skinny girls look good in clothes, but fit chicks look better naked."

Damn right.

UPDATE: This commercial was shared around the Internet right after I wrote this, so apparently I am not the only one who feels this way. Of course, it was not made in America.



*This refers to a show called "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" which no one should watch. 

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