My relationship with gravity.

I am fat.

There. I said it.

I was a fat kid who turned into a fatter teenager who became an even fatter adult. My parents are fat. Fat is a fact of my life. I could lose all the weight and somehow make it to 150 lbs, and the fact that I spent most of my life fat would be just that: a fact. It has taken me 27 years to realize that being fat does not mean I need to be miserable all. the. time.

A few nights ago, I started reading a book about an overweight woman. This book was designed to look like it was along the same vein as Bridget Jones’s Diary; the cover reviews all spoke of its wit and sly humour, and the back blurb made it seem like a coming of age/learning to love oneself type of story.

I made it halfway through the book before I realized there would be no humor, nor a happy ending for this character. And it made me mad.

We live in a world where fat people are told nobody could possibly love them. Friends only keep us around because they look skinnier by comparison, and people only sleep with us because they’re just as desperate for attention as we are. Say what you want about the Health At Every Size movement, but it has done wonders in making people realize that occasionally big people do have healthy relationships. We can be happy. Just because we are fat does not mean we are not still human beings worthy of basic human decency.

And yes, I realize that I am saying all of that as a fat woman who is actively trying to lose weight. I even have myfitnesspal open on another tab as I write this, because I just put in the calorie count for my breakfast (cocoa puffs and almond milk is super healthy, right?). Am I happy with my body? Hell no. But I am working towards changing that, both mentally and physically. I may never make it under 200 lbs. Maybe I will. Maybe in 2 weeks I’ll get depressed and eat my feelings until I’ve actually managed to gain another 30 lbs. Who knows. But at the end of this weight loss journey I’m on, I want to be able to be happy with the number printed inside of my jeans. I want to be comfortable in my own skin, even if that skin has a little extra jiggle to it. I want to be confident enough that I feel like an actual person, instead of just a token fat girl.

Which is exactly what pissed me off about this particular book. There is not a single character in the novel who seems to think of the main character as a human being. Instead she is a sex doll, a sounding board, a side kick they don’t really want around, but put up with. She does not even think of herself as a real person, instead allowing these people to use her all while she has inner monologues about fantasies of skinny girls eating until they explode. There are far too many people who think that this is exactly what the inner workings of a fat girl mind looks like, and the last thing we need is for anyone to feed into that stereotype. Are there times when I notice a skinny friend eating 3,000 calories of delicious ice cream and have a moment of jealousy? Of course, and yes, it’s probably more often than it should be. She eats ice cream, and she’s a cute girl enjoying a treat. I eat ice cream? Look at that fat cow, my god, she needs to put down the spoon. They don’t care if it’s my cheat day. They don’t care that I’ve lost over 25 lbs. They only see a fat girl, shoveling empty calories into her face. And I shouldn’t care, because they don’t know. I know how hard I’ve worked, and that this ice cream is probably the only real indulgence I’ll have in the next few weeks. I know that after this I’ll go back to salads with bland chicken, because I don’t know how to cook anything that tastes good while still being relatively low in calories and moderately healthy. I want to be able to happily enjoy myself, without feeling like I should hide in shame. I will eat this ice cream, thank you very much, and I will love it. I will also have horrifying issues later because I am also lactose intolerant, but that’s a problem for future me. Also, I’ve gotten off point. What I was trying to say was that yes, I and I’m sure many other women – dare I say even skinny women? – think about how a friend can eat twice their weight in junk food and not gain a pound, while I can feel my thighs getting bigger just from looking at it. That’s the society we live in, and it’s hard not to think about things like that when it’s shoved down your throat at every opportunity. However, I also have thoughts about how glad I am that she is healthy. She doesn’t have to worry about this shit, and fuck yeah, girl’s got some good genetics on her side. She should enjoy herself!

I know a lot of people think that I spend all day thinking about how my friends are bitches because they’re skinnier than me. I’m fat, easily the fattest of my friends (and most of my family), so how could I not? But truthfully, I don’t. I cheer those bitches on when they focus on their health. When they choose to be happy, I am the first person there with pom-poms waving. The first step to being happy is surrounding yourself with happy people, and if you’re sad? That’s fine, I’ll try to be happy enough for the both of us. Maybe one day we’ll all be 120 lbs and sharing unsalted almonds as a snack, or sitting pretty over 200 lbs while laughing over cheesecake about our thunder thighs. Because it is just as possible to be miserable and skinny as it is to be happy and fat. The trick is to find your happy.

So as a writer, as a fat girl, as a human being, I’m saying maybe it’s time we don’t feed directly into this kind of skinny vs. fat bullshit? Please?

Twenty-seven.

There are 27 cubes on a Rubik’s Cube. An elephant has 27 pairs of chromosomes. The planet Uranus has 27 moons. I know how to google random facts about the number 27.

As of today, I’ve also been alive for 27 years. I feel like there is some weird change between 26 and 27. I’ve officially made the move from the mid twenties to the late twenties. 26 still feels young, and then 27 comes around like “pass me the collagen repairing lotions and Advil, ’cause skin elasticity and drinking with no hangovers are a thing of the past”.  I’ve heard of 27 being referred to as the age of weddings and new babies every weekend, and I can confirm that 90% of my Facebook feed is chubby cheeks and engagement rings. Instagram is flooded with wedding dress ideas and tiny little toes. Twitter is still a political shit show, but that’s Twitter for you.

I wanted to celebrate myself today, and I thought for a while about what to post. I considered 27 facts about myself. I considered 27 things I’m proud of (but to be honest, I could only think of 5), and I thought of just posting a bunch of pictures with 27 objects in them. In the end, I’m going to keep it simple. 26 was not the greatest year of my life – I left a toxic work environment but ended up struggling financially because of it, and I had a period of time where every doctor’s appointment ended with a new diagnosis – but I did have a few good things come out of it. I found a work environment where I actually feel like a valued employee, and after a minor surgery I got a cleanish bill of health and a newfound resolve to really get myself in gear and get healthy. I discovered new passions and causes that are near and dear to my heart, and found that I’m a lot tougher than I ever gave myself credit for. I realized that I was unhappy, and that I alone had the power to change it.

So here’s to learning and growing and working towards being the best me that I can be. But first, I’m going to go watch 27 Dresses and eat 27 cupcakes with 27 candles because I can. It’s a known fact that calories don’t count on your birthday!

I failed Socializing 101.

I’m pretty convinced that 90% of my problems would be solved if I could just learn how to socialize better. Communication has never been easy for me, unless it’s spilling my guts for anyone and everyone who stumbles across my blog to see. In person or even on a more personal, 1-on-1 level, though? Forget about it. Which is why I’ve turned to online apps to make friends. I have been on the Hey Vina! waitlist for  at least a year (why does Android always have to wait so long for apps?), and I’ve tried Bumble BFF. If you’re not familiar with those names, don’t worry… I’ve only ever heard of them being discussed on Reddit. The basic idea for both is that it’s Tinder for finding friends. Women make profiles, match with other women, and bam, best friends, maybe? I’ve only actually managed to get onto Bumble BFF, which is also a dating site, which is weird to me. I mean, I get it, it’s basically the same thing and makes sense, but there is a glitch or something in their system and choosing the option to disable dating and use only the friend finding aspect doesn’t actually always remove your profile from the dating side. So you can’t see any guys, but they can all see you. Creepy, right? Anyway, the only thing I really got out of using the app was that I discovered that I have absolutely nothing in common with a vast majority of the women in my city who use Bumble BFF.

I feel like there is a prerequisite to live in my hometown that I missed, and it is illegal to live here unless you enthusiastically and unquestioningly love hiking. You’d think in an app with what I believe is a relatively decent sized pool of participants, there would be at least one other woman like me, who laughs at the word “marathon” when it’s used in the context of athleticism instead of movies. Every girl I looked at boasted about her love of spending days out on the mountain trails, taking in the glorious beauty of the outdoors… apparently with a massive wine glass in each hand, given that more than a few of them also felt the need to mention their love of day drinking. I mean, on one hand I’m glad there are apparently so many women in my local area who have the same interests, because clearly this should be a breeze for them. But not me. There my profile was, in a sea of young professionals who would rather be attending hot yoga, with an about me section filled with things like “I think Cards Against Humanity is funnier than I’d like to admit”, and “Let’s bond over tea and cheesecake”.

One brave soul dared to like my profile. I was elated – someone likes me! And she seemed really cool, too. If I remember correctly, she was a theatre major, and liked geeking out and  drinking tea just as much as me. She also liked hiking, but I suppose beggars can’t be choosers. I stared at her profile. I hovered over the “send a message” button. I promptly deleted my account and hid underneath all of my blankets.

This is what I do. I talk at great length about how I want to make more friends, and even go so far as to kind of initiate a process that could lead to me actually making some. A part of me never really thinks that anyone will like me, and then when someone does, it’s like every single alarm bell in my head fires off at once, and I panic. I shut that shit down so fast you can barely even see it happening. And even with my “this is my year, I’m going to make some serious changes” attitude, I’m doing it again. The only difference is that this time, it’s kind of like watching myself from an outside perspective.

I heard about another website. It’s an actual site, not just an app, and quite a few people seem to have really good results on it. Enter: Girlfriend Social. I signed up. I verified my email. I panicked and avoided filling out any  information because that would mean people might talk to me sooner. After a day of thinking about it, I sucked it up, and finally made a real profile. And then I waited.

And someone liked it.

And I am now considering deleting everything and pretending it didn’t happen.

Because yes, someone likes me. Someone could potentially want to discuss mutual interests or actually – *gasp* – hang out with me, like, in person. They might want to socialize, and I think that I want to, until it actually comes time to do it. Because socializing is hard, and I worry too much about what people think about me. I filter myself in conversations too much, or not enough, and I come across as weird. I don’t know where the happy medium is, and I hate feeling like an idiot, which is something I’m all too familiar with. So I avoid talking anyone other than the 3 people I currently talk to (and that includes my parents). And now I’ve avoided it for so long, that I’m afraid to start again.

But I have to, because otherwise I’m just going to keep going on in the same circle forever and ever and ever until I die alone and forgotten, only to be discovered alone on the floor of my too-cluttered apartment, with all seventeen of my cats curled up against my body in grief from losing their amazing owner…. because they would obviously never eat my face or anything.

So here I go. I’m going to talk to a random stranger on the internet in the hopes that maybe we can be friends. Maybe she’ll hate me. But at least I’ll be able to say I tried… I guess?

In which I have no idea what I’m doing.

My best friend and I made a pact this year. We were going to take care of ourselves, mentally and physically. We are going to feel better, be better, be happy. 2017 is “our year”.

We say this every year, for the record.

But this year, it really does feel different (pretty sure I also say that every year too though, so don’t quote me on it if it turns out to be a massive lie). 30 is getting closer every day, and I’m not happy with where I am in life. I spend 99.9% of my time worrying about things I cannot control and probably just as much time making stupid decisions that only end up feeding into that worry. Maybe this will be one of those decisions, who knows. At the end of the day, I’m not happy. What I’ve been doing hasn’t helped, and I need to change.

I mean, I still don’t even know what I want to be when I grow up.

Actually, that’s a lie. I know exactly what I want to be when I grow up. The problem is that I want to be everything. I want to do it all. I want to write. I want to design video games. I want to learn to play the guitar and start a comedy band just because I can. I want to make people laugh. I want to help people. I want to learn. I want to teach. I want to be happy. I come up with ridiculous schemes and ideas and then let myself down because I can’t do it all. I know, there is a large majority of people who will tell me to grow up. I probably should. But that’s not the point.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, this year actually is my year. I am making it happen, because fuck being miserable.

So this is where that leaves us. I have an ever-growing list of things I want to try. I want to grow as a person, be more confident, make new friends, be happy. A sort of bucket list for the year,if you will.

  1. Start a blog. I’ve wanted to for a while, but I had no idea what to actually write about. Mommy blogging? Video games? Mental health stuffs? Absolutely random and all over the place entries that don’t really have anything in common? Past attempts have all devolved into me just reblogging things that I find funny on tumblr. But no more! I doubt anyone will read this, but it still feels like I’m accomplishing something. Even if I only ever get two or three readers at most (hi dad).
  2. Finish a novel. I’ve written 3 full length (and by full length I mean longer than 50k words with a beginning, middle, and end) novels, but have never actually deemed one “finished”. This year, I will write, edit, then edit again, and edit some more, and complete at least 1.
  3. Send at least 1 finished novel to at least 1 agent. Bonus points for multiple agents. Double bonus points if anyone actually likes it. Chocolate chip cookies for all if someone actually wants to work with me. (And I know what you’re thinking…. you suck at writing. Just look at this mess of a blog. Actually… it’s probably just me thinking that, which leads me to my next point.)
  4. Stop telling myself that everything I touch is automatically awful just because it was unfortunate enough to come into contact with me. Yes, some things I do are truly terrible pieces of trash. Everyone has those moments. I want – no, will – learn to overcome those moments and not let them beat me.
  5. Be healthy. As someone with a  weight problem as well as multiple medical conditions that are directly correlated to weight, losing it is a pretty big goal. I’m going to finally do something about it. Again, I find myself with a convenient segue for my next point.
  6. Take care of myself. Need a mental health day every once in a while? Who doesn’t. Had a tough week? Take time to relax, maybe have a small glass of wine and a bubble bath. Stop thinking about what’s to come and stressing out… live for today, and live in the moment. Tomorrow is full of never-ending possibilities. I’m amazed I haven’t completely lost my mind trying to figure out what they all are.
  7. Actually try online gaming. I am afraid of people. I am afraid of people finding out just how bad I am at video games. Eff it all, I want to play games, and I want to play games with people who like playing them as much as I do. Maybe if I get comfortable enough with talking to strangers in-game, I can look at maybe streaming every once in a while, which is also a goal of mine. I doubt anyone would watch, but I think it’d be fun to try!
  8. Make 1 PC game. I’m currently playing around a bit in a program called Construct 2 which allows you to make 2D games (and it’s free which is perfect, because that’s pretty much the extent of my budget). It’s ridiculously fun, and I have wanted to make a game for an equally ridiculous amount of time. I even have a perfect story idea for one that I had issues translating into a novel, if only I can figure out how to execute it.
  9. Join a class. Zumba, pole dancing, pottery, floral arrangements…. anything. I just want something to get me out of the house and socializing. I’m essentially a hermit, the quintessential introvert. I want more friends. I want to be an extrovert. My mom tells me I just need to get out there and do it, but outside is scary.
  10. Actually fold my laundry once it leaves the dryer, instead of leaving it in the basket until it manages to find its way back to the dirty pile. Okay, okay, I know. This is never going to happen. But a girl can dream, right?

If you’ve managed to read through all of this, I applaud you. I cannot stress it enough, I have no idea what I’m doing, and this is very likely the beginning of what will be a long, disjointed blog about nothing of consequence, but I’m having fun doing it. If you want to come along, that’s cool. Not your cup of tea? Also cool. Also tea is delicious, and I want some.

Also I’m really good at ending blogs.