Weight – 275

I had another post on my mind today but then I had a nap and completely forgot what I wanted to say. Anyway, I didn’t update last week mainly because of the craziness of having my parents over for my birthday and Thanksgiving.

But I digress…this past week I had the frustrating experience of having to wear an official t-shirt while volunteering for an event. A few days before the event I was asked to give my size. Assuming that, like most events, the t-shirts were going to be the standard unisex Hanes type, I replied that I needed an XXL. Moments later I got a text back saying that the sizes she found only went up to a Large and oh, by the way, the shirts were from H&M. I cannot describe the incredible annoyance I felt right then. Many people who shop regularly at H&M know that their sizing is inconsistent at best. I can’t tell you the number of stories I’ve heard of a woman who is normally say, a size 8 who can barely squeeze into an H&M 12 and yet can also wear a Small in another outfit. It’s confusing and frustrating to say the least.

But this wasn’t the only reason for my anger. No, my anger also stemmed from the fact that I was told I could simply wear a thin long sleeved tee underneath and that it would look “Great!” I was seething. It would not look great, I would look like an overstuffed sausage. The thought that ran through my head over and over though was, “How could she think I would fit into one of those shirts? She’s seen me over and over, she knows what I look like!”

I was also angry that this person didn’t take into account the very real chance that it simply might not fit. I did not want to have to go through the humiliation of being the only volunteer who was obviously and inexplicably not wearing an official t-shirt at the event. I have to assume that someone who has never been forced to shop in a plus size store simply doesn’t understand what it’s like to be unable to put on an article of clothing because it isn’t big enough.

As I recounted this story in an online forum, another commenter pointed out that the woman was probably suffering from a case of “You’re not fat!” The article, written by Kate Harding, explains that many people are hesitant to call someone else fat because the word is riddled with negative connotations. Being called fat is only an insult because fat is also associated with the following:

“Ugly

Unhealthy

Smelly

Lazy

Ignorant

Undisciplined

Unlovable

Burdensome

Embarrassing

Unfashionable

Mean

Angry

Socially inept

Just plain icky”

Out of that entire list I’d say that the only word that would apply to me is lazy. Yes, I am inherently lazy. I’m not proud of it but at least I can admit it. But Kate is totally right when she says that “when they say “You’re not fat,” what they really mean is “You’re not a dozen nasty things I associate with the word fat.” It’s true and yet incredibly difficult to get the message across. I am fat. There are no two ways around it. And it almost feels like I’ve been disenfranchised when someone doesn’t trust me to know what (most likely) will and won’t fit me, as if I’m too stupid to know my own body.

Now here comes the funny part. For the most part, the shirt fit. Of course, my Large tee was extremely snug while my girlfriends were practically swimming in their size Small shirts. But I was able to make it through the day without being completely red-faced. Maybe once I’ve lost a few pounds I’ll try the shirt on again, but in the meantime, it’s going to the back of the closet.

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