Today, on an LDS discussion board, I read through a thread about a study done in which LDS people were said to be fatter than many other groups of people. The thread headed in many directions, with some people saying that fat people just need to eat better, and there were some people airing their frustrations about gaining weight. I admit, I'm in the second camp! I wrote a heartfelt reply, and thought it would be good to record it here...
I have struggled terribly with my weight since I hit puberty. Overnight I suddenly had to kill myself exercising just so I could stay the "overweight friend" in school. I once read a book by an LDS author who stated that any overweight young lady who was fat, was obviously not keeping the Word of Wisdom. It literally crushed me! :( I worked much harder than any of my skinny, cute, junk-eating friends, yet I never looked like they did, and now I was "less worthy" and "less righteous" than them as well!
Now, 8 kids later, and many sizes bigger, I am eating healthier than I have EVER eaten in my life! (In high school I went on a 1,000 calorie diet, though most days I only ate about 600 calories a day! [Eek!] ) NO processed foods, no sugar, whole grain wheat and grains, lots of organic produce, etc., etc. My DH and I keep a combined effort to stay healthy, yet we remain plump. With this last pregnancy, when my midwife would check my blood pressure each month, she would go on and on about how amazingly healthy I am. She even told me that my body is "made to make babies!" :D (ya think?!)
I have come to the conclusion that FAT does NOT equal "UNHEALTHY." The Lord NEVER stated that we should weigh within certain limits. You can't tell me that the person who has gastric bypass surgery is healthier than me, just because they're now thin! But I am doing lots of things to be healthy!
Being a fat person stinks. I hate being judged and ignored because I don't look perfect on the outside. People just look right past me and ignore me, until they hear my comments about something, or get to know me better. Then it's like they've finally noticed I exist. It hurts, but I know that it is simply human nature. We DO judge people based on appearance. I just wish I knew what I could do differently to change mine. I have wasted years in the past obsessing and crying over every pound, and I'm not going to do that any more. I'm just grateful my DH thinks I'm a voluptuous babe! :D
I've heard it said that fat people show their weaknesses externally. I have, after many years, decided that this is just one of my trials in life. It is something I have to bear on this earth, but look out-- in the resurrection, I'm gonna be gorgeous! ;)
In the meantime, I'm so grateful for the internet, so now I can have a voice without having to help people get past my appearance. I am NOT less righteous because I am fat. I just get to wear one of my trials on my body, for all to see.