Saturday, November 26, 2005

It Could All Be So Simple


If I told you that today that I am 5'3", 124 lbs, and yet still stare critically at my reflection every day, make you hate me?

My obsession with my body actually started accidently by others' observations:

"You're too skinny!"
"She must have an eating disorder!"
"Did you eat today, honey? Maybe that's why you have a headache."
"You know, guys like a girl with a little meat on her..."

While in high school, I heard comments like this frequently. It wasn't my fault I only weighed 110 pounds-obesity didn't run in my family. I used to eat butter for lunch while dining off campus with my friends, mostly because my mom didn't allow it at home. "How can you eat like that?" my friends would ask. "It's good," I would answer, chewing on the lump of animal fat.

In college, I still remained at 110 pounds, despite how I ate. It wasn't until age 24 that I actually started gaining weight, much to everyone's unsolicited joy.

"Look at those legs! You're finally getting some meat on ya, huh?"
"You look sooo much better!"
"Glad you decided to eat something!"
"Guys love a girl with a nice ass!"

Now, at 29 and a weight that ranges between 120-124 pounds, I spend most of the time staring disapprovingly at my body. I finally decided to bring it up to my therapist:

me: I'm very unhappy with the way that I look.

Dr. H: What's wrong with the way that you look?

me: I feel fat. I've gained weight.

Dr. H: (looking very unconcerned) How much do you weigh?

me: 121 pounds, today.

Dr. H: What's the most you've ever weighed?

me: 155 pounds, but I was pregnant.

Dr. H: That doesn't count, Jaimie.

me: Ok-124 pounds.

Dr. H: That is by no means "overweight."

me: I know. I know it's not rational, but when I look in the mirror, I see fat.

Dr. H: Well, you have a classic case of what is called "dysphoric body image." You see something that isn't there.

me: I thought so. James always tells me I look good, and he doesn't see what I'm talking about, but I just think he's being nice. I don't believe him. I just think I'm fat.

Dr. H: This is about control, Jaimie (and so on the therapeutic rant continues...)

Don't think I have an eating disorder. I eat, and I don't throw up. I find women like Nicole Richie and Lindsay Lohan absolutely frightening. The problem is, when people tell me that I look "great", I think they're lying to me. My therapist actually told me that I looked 18 years old, and I started laughing. How could this be? I asked. "Well, your size, and the stylish, hip way that you dress." Therapy has its rewards.

If people hadn't made those "skinny" remarks, and after gaining a little weight, the "glad you have meat on you" remarks were not said, maybe then I wouldn't have this small (ok-big) issue before me.

It could all be so simple...I wish I could laugh at those remarks now and find them hilarious, but instead I stare at my thighs, longing for a little more space between them.

Posted by Jaimie :: 9:31 PM :: 21 Peeked Into My Diary:

.:Write In My Diary:.

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