Purge the Urge


My compulsion to eat has been superseded by an overwhelming desire to write.

Having spent more than 3/4 of my life overweight, indeed obese, I have just watched a BBC documentary* on weight loss support groups which have drained us off our monetary pounds year after year whilst having minimum impact on most members waistlines.

The film maker seemed determined to find deep seated ‘issues’ to explain the members weight gain: childhood bullying seemed to be her preferred ‘go to’ theory (all of those interviewed admitted they had experienced it but hey, find me a skinny-mini, ginger-whinger, four-eyes who didn’t & I bet they ain’t all tipping the scales at double figures…)

This got me soul-searching my issues for a whole 12.4 seconds & I concluded the following:

  • I was fat BEFORE the kids at school delighted in bringing it to my attention
  • I still wear glasses & haven’t been bullied into laser eye surgery
  • I over eat when I am tired, stressed, bored, hungry, alone, in company, happy, miserable, breathing, awake
  • I was fat before I was pregnant and have ‘sprung back’ to my pre-baby figure (with added extras!)
  • obese rhymes with ‘release’, ‘Denise’ (ooh, ready-made for the playground bullies) & ‘more please’ (I’m sure there’s a slimming group catch-phrase just waiting to be devoured in there somewhere)

Why is it so wrong to say ‘I love food. I sit down to eat more than I move around to burn off the extra calories’?  Why are thin people so offended by us? Are we the living equivalent of the putrid images of cancerous body parts printed on cigarette boxes to ward off smokers; don’t enjoy your food too much as THIS could happen to you?

And in truth, do I give a dang? No, not any more.  I used to. I wore black from head to toe in an effort to slim down my silhouette.  I wore lose fitting clothes to disguise the rolls and long sleeves to hide my wobbly upper arms.  But for whose benefit? So as not to offend? So as to attract a mate before ruminating on how to keep up the pretence when things got more intimate?

WELL NOT ANY MORE.  Once I discovered how empowering the F word is when used to describe yourself; relishing in the shock on the faces of those who seek to shame me, scoring their uncomfortable laughter on my sneer-o-meter** as they struggle to know if it is  appropriate to join in the joke or not.  Now I couldn’t give a fried Mars Bar (other chocolate bars are available deep fried) what anyone thinks.

That said, I cannot claim to have embraced my size.  It’s physically impossible for a start, but I can reach back enough to fasten my own bra (well I wouldn’t wear anyone else’s now would I?).  For health reasons alone I need to shift some serious stonage but I will not be motivated by shame or guilt or bullies.

 After all, they failed the first second and third) time.



* I worked my way through 4 chilled chocolate desserts whilst watching so I’m not convinced the film had much impact.

** the sneer-o-meter exists only in my mind and to the best of my knowledge is not available by mail order or in a Sunday supplement catalogue.