This is the third guest post of our newest blogging candidate, Nomchelle. Today, we will vote on her inclusion.
At the danger of sounding like an overachieving mum, last week my 12-year-old, Alex, cooked dinner for himself and his younger brothers. It was pasta with sausage and tomato. He dished up enormous portions and they all sat down to eat. After a while, I noticed that my 10-year-old son, Harrison, had been carefully picking out his pasta and eating it, leaving all the sausage in the bowl. He explained that he was saving the best until last.
Trigger warning: Graphic discussion of eating disorders and fat shaming.
Back in 1999, Dr. Drew Pinsky, the popular addiction specialist turned TV and radio host, did something unconscionable that only caught up with him in 2012:
A Boston judge on Thursday approved a record $3 billion guilty plea by British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline, which paid the “Celebrity Rehab” doctor — known as Dr. Drew — $275,000 to tout Wellbutrin, approved by the FDA to treat depression, as a drug to treat other conditions including obesity, addictions and sexual dysfunction.
Dr. Drew infamously told “Loveline” listeners that Wellbutrin “could explain a woman suddenly having 60 orgasms in one night.” Dr. Drew was part of “Operation Hustle” (I am not making this up), Glaxo’s campaign to illegally promote the off-label benefits of its antidepressant. Sales reps wanted to promote the wonderdrug as the “the happy, horny, skinny pill.”
Because my birthday falls close to Valentine’s Day, I’ve had more heart-shaped cakes than I can shake a stick at. Because my legs like to spontaneously not work, I decided it was time to get a stick to shake at things.
This is the second guest post of our newest blogging candidate, Nomchelle. After her next post, we will vote on her inclusion.
Trigger warning: Discussion of exercise as a weight loss tool.
My 13-year-old thighs redden as I round the penultimate corner of the cross-country race. Somehow I’m ahead. Way ahead. I’ve hauled my chubby body across the fields and up the lane and now, back in the school field, I’m yards from the finish line. I’m finally good at a sport — well, if you ignore the burning limbs and the metallic taste in my mouth. And not so much good at sport as better than the others in my physical education (PE) group, the Mixed Group, made up from the dregs of boys and girls deemed too hopeless to be able to train with the rest of their gender.
No matter. I am first. It’s a bright, clear day. I’m miles ahead. I’m first. I reach the final cone and collapse onto my back, smiling. It feels amazing. I’m a winner. Rolling my head, I notice the second place runner nearing the finish. I smile, he looks past me. Hang on, he’s running past me. He rounds the cone and runs right up to the sports teacher, not more than ten yards away, who thumbs his stopwatch. “First! Well done.” They both give me a sideways glance.
A few years ago, when I was pretty new to the whole fat acceptance scene, I was in the car with my husband and we passed a billboard for a plastic surgeon that featured a woman on the beach in a white bikini. Like this:
I looked up at her svelte, tan, surgically-achieved body and immediately felt inferior. Because I was transitioning from the dark side (aka, a life of self-inflicted fat shaming and dieting) to a the glorious freedom of self-love and acceptance, my feelings of inferiority were followed by anger, confusion and the strange guilt that comes with failing to achieve self-acceptance instantly. This guilt was, of course, caused by a lifelong pattern of feeling like I am responsible for the fact that my body isn’t good enough (or pretty enough or whatever), so feeling guilty for failing myself is a default emotional state.
Recently I tried to think back to a time when I wasn’t engaged in some sort of useless war against myself.
It was difficult to imagine, but I finally had to admit that the last time I remember being without the weight of crippling personal criticism, was in the late 70s, when I was a freewheeling, life-loving wearer of Garanimals separates and Underoos.