Thursday, May 30, 2013

Notes on the Last Week of May

I got sandbagged by an internet fat argument in a place I did not expect to, and it sucked.  It kind of blew my brain circuits, and it definitely sapped my energy for fat thinking.  I'm working on writing it out, NEVER FEAR, internet.  It's been a bit of a rough week in general.  Dissertation blues, and the anxiety of staring down a long summer with little nutritional checking-in or supervision is there, too.  I found myself feeling a little adrift, worried that I'd suddenly gained weight or was about to gain weight, telling myself tomorrow I'd tighten up my eating, backing off the breakfast program, trying on those measurement pants more than once a day.  Oops.  So I put the pants away, in the box of shit that doesn't fit me up on the top shelf of my closet, and they're staying up there until July.

I went late to that spa bachelorette party, and had to make my way from the locker room to the party by myself, fatkini-clad and without the protective armor of friends.  I swear to God that I had more trouble getting them to tell me where the VIP room was than I would have if I'd been thin.  In their defense, they spoke more Russian than English, but I was getting a vibe but good.  (There's no way of telling, of course, and one day I'm going to write about the cognitive tax of that ambiguity, on which, blessedly, there is a solid body of research.)

A friend was all up in my grill about how well-dressed I was at the wedding on Sunday.  (In fairness, I was well-dressed.  Navy shirtdress, nude peep-toes, Ted Muehling earrings, lace necklace, a half-hour beat face.) "It's just a really nice fit on you."  That's close enough to a body comment that it pings my radar, puts me on alert (and also makes me muttery subject-changing embarrassed).  It's like when my dad says, "You've been looking great lately."  That's different than saying "You look great."  He could be talking about my recent forays into patterns and a bolder lip, but he is probably talking about my size.  Similarly, my friend could be complimenting my masterful shopping for my shape (possible because this is my closest friend who is also a fat person, but not super likely because we never talk shopping because this friend is a butch dyke who's all menswear all the time), but might also be finding a way to tell me that she has noticed that my waist is moderately smaller than it was at some time in the past.  (See above re: ambiguity.)  All of this is rendered more interpretively difficult by the mammoth wall of silence that surrounds my size in my interpersonal relationships.  I am given to understand that some people have friends who would baldly mention noticing a change of size, but since mine would never, I sometimes get backed into these kinds of interpretive swamps.  Because when something is unspeakable, it lives in intimation and innuendo, and if you can't say something, not saying it doesn't mean you're not talking about it.

In the gym, I talk to my body.  "I hear you," I say, when my thighs start to twinge while racking my deadlift.  I tried the alternate grip, and, blastoff.  Alternate grip all the way.  I blazed through five sets, and finally understood why you should be able to deadlift more than you squat.  More weight on the deadlift, coming up (it's nice that something's ready to get bumped up).  I took a read on the funny old medical scale in the locker room; it's even with my last weight at my nutritionist's, which eases my anxiety.  Weighing myself at the gym probably should not become part of my routine, but I wanted a baseline on that scale so that if I'm spinning out this summer I can have recourse to it.  I waved goodbye to the hulking desk attendant on my way out.


F.F.A. said...

In regards to your friend complimenting you, why does it have to be couched in your size or a reference to it? Why can't it just be you looked nice? It's not so unfathomable. Sometimes a compliment is a compliment. I think with your father I can relate but I think more often it is me projecting. I called my mom out once and said yeah let me guess I look thinner and she said no. You look healthier and less stressed, it looks like 5 years have come off your face. As your mother it's nice to see you more relaxed. Oh...thanks...

I truly believe that while people do say and see things, and form opinions there are more that live in our head then in the outside world. I think it's scarier for me to think someone actually believes I look attractive then they think I look attractive for a fat girl.

Anonymous said...

You just managed to articulate something I struggle with more than being fat... those seemingly positive (because you're not quite sure)interactions with your nearest and dearest about your appearance. Wow!