When used as an adjective, FAT means to have large amounts of excess flesh.
But, who gets to decide what enormous amounts of the flesh mean, and why does anyone reserve the right to judge? There is so much about my childhood that I only understand now in my adult years, and this is one of those things.
Fat, when I was a child, was BAD. In fact, it was worse than bad. And, it was something that I was taunted about EVERY SINGLE DAY. Although I wasn’t a very tiny girl, I was not ever obese, but the fact that I even have to say that says something too, doesn’t it?
Would I have been taunted and made fun of if I was smaller?
I remember that kids would poke me and joke that their hands got lost in all my lard. And then everyone would laugh. I felt like I never belonged anywhere, which led to being unbearably sad all the time. I wasn’t ever the IT girl. Trying to keep up with the changing trends just to be accepted was like a test that I did nothing but fail at. I didn’t belong anywhere in life.
Now, I’m 29 years old, and only NOW am I leaning into me and understanding that loving me has absolutely nothing to do with what size I am or am not.
I switched schools when I was in Grade 3 and was taunted all the time for being “fat.”
I LOVED my first school. My older brother was in the same school as me, despite the 5-year difference between us, and I always felt so safe and secure. Growing up with those kids was fantastic, and school was a fun and very safe space for me. We moved when I turned 10.
I was in for a rude awakening.
The children at my new school were not friendly like at my last school. Life had changed drastically for me. I wear glasses, have freckles, and I have never exactly been skinny. BUT, I am also a very excellent student, very kind, and I like to think I am funny.
Every day, I was taunted for being fat.
There wasn’t a single part of me that was good enough for my new school, and this was crazy to me because before this, never in my life had I been made fun of. I was broken down every day. Torn apart verbally every day.
At my new school, I was all alone. My brother went to a different school. I didn’t have friends. I tried so hard to make some, but I couldn’t. Sometimes girls would pretend to be my friend, but only to find out things about me and start rumors behind my back.
Hating school, I came home crying every single day.
I was always called fat.
I have never been skinny, nor have I ever been very large, but despite whatever size I am/ or was/ why was that okay? Every day I was called fatty, or fatso. Or Four-Eyed freckle face. Every day, I felt more and more alone and sunk lower and lower into a deep and never-ending sadness.
I continued being kind and attempting to make friends, but it never worked for me until high school. I was never like all the other kids, to all the kids who taunted me. I would just like to say thank you.
Thank you for forcing me to become a strong and independent person. Thank you for making me see that beauty lies within, and while you weren’t very nice to me, I am sure you are all beautiful people. Because of you and the cruelness you let out on me, I can be that much more empathetic and kind.
Thank you for pointing out my size because in my adult years, I often still think of how you taunted me, and I am always working on having a more positive body image and embracing my body’s beauty.
You taught me young that there are so many mean people in the world and so many people who don’t care about your feelings.
Thank you for this. While it was a tough lesson to learn, I am glad I learned it as a child rather than an adult. But still… does a child really need to know how mean the world really is?
And to the ones who taunted me for having freckles.. I thought of you while I went for biopsies to hopefully rule out skin cancer. How dare you take something that occurred to me naturally, and make my life hell about it. But, again, thank you. I have learned to toughen up, because of you.
I believe my years of being bullied changed me, shaped me, and made me. I was tested every single day as to how much I could take. I often ran to the washroom in tears.
I have wondered how different I would be today if you had just been kind. I spent so long hating my freckles and wanting to be skinny. I spent so much time hating myself for being fat. Something that I didn’t even understand that meant. I was just the new kid at school.. and they took my entire school years from me.
Whatever shape you are, whatever size, anything, you are so amazing. Each and every one of you. Please, be kind. Be kind to all.