Tuesday, September 6, 2011

For a long time now I have felt literally subhuan because of the way that I look.  Try as I might to accept the Health at any size position and to love myself for who I am, I just have not been able to believe that anyone ever saw me as anything other than a fat slob who, on occasion, might be able to put together a decent wardrobe.

So I don't know what to make of a recent story.

Not to long ago I was at a party for someone I love.  I took the same level of care with my clothing and makeup as I would for any formal, special event.  I even put in my contacts.

As a part of the party the guests were asked to provide the entertainment.  Not being one for singing or dancing, I went with what I know- I wrote.  I wrote a poem using jewelery as a metaphor for the sparking guest of honour.  Even I will admit that I thought the poem was pretty good, but I figured it would end at that.

I come from a family of beautiful people, and generally prefer to hide in the background as much as possible, so as soon as I was finished I gave the guest of honour a hug and sat back down at my table.

Shortly thereafter another guest, one who I would consider among the most beautiful of the beautiful people and I were chatting.  "You know," she said to me "when you were standing up there reading that poem with the light on you, I realized I must have never really looked at you before.  You have such a beautiful face".

And there is it folks.  I got the exact same comment a few days later from someone else.  Because of who the comments came from I am taking them as genuine complements, but the truth is that the line "you have such a beautiful face" just makes my head scream "if only you would lose the weight."

So now I am trying to figure out what was different that night.

Was it that I have lost a fair bit of weight in the last 6 months?  I would guess so except no one except one aunt seemed to notice that I was "a shadow of my former self".  In fact, there were a number of times I was reminded of exactly what I looked like and what I "should" be doing about it.

Was it just that normally I hide behind my glasses and everyone around me and this is one of the only times I stood there on my own apart from everyone else- I would love to believe it and am really trying- but wasn't that also true on my wedding day?  No one said anything then.  Was it that I was speaking from my heart to someone I truly love?  Also would have been true on my wedding day.

So why now?  Why now when I feel worse about myself than I ever have in my entire life.  I feel ugly and sad and broken.  The compliment was amazing- made me feel like flying for a little while- but the more I go through time as a sadder me, the more people seem to be attracted to me than they ever were to the happy me.  I see it everywhere I turn.  People are more helpful.  More polite.

Are they trying to help me feel better about myself in their own way?  Or just being honest that something really looked different that night.  I wore the exact same outfit to shul that week with nothing remarkable happening.

Every time I say something along any of these lines I get told how beautiful I am on the inside.  Another line that starts my brain screaming "but that outside- YIKES!"

On the other hand, if I am so beautiful on the inside, than why do I always feel so ugly and shamed.  Clearly God decided I was not worthy of any sort of beauty, for me or for the life that was inside of me.

Maybe I should just learn to make everything match and turn my insides ugly as well.  At least then you can tell at a glance what I am.


  1. There is nothing unique about the bride taking the spotlight. She is the bride, that is what her role is supposed to be that day.

    The poem was of the highest quality, that those who have taken the time to appreciate it have come to expect. There were many ways you could have presented the poem. Printed as a gift or had it read as a group.

    Instead you decided to be front and centre in the spotlight on your own. Your grace, your beauty, your heart, your generosity, your intelligence and your wonderful gift of writing (which most people there preferred you didn't share) all took centre stage. You decided that moment that you wanted to shine and you did.

    There is no question, why that night was different from others. You deserve to be appreciated like that all the time.

  2. Love yourself! You should read Jen Lancaster's memoir Such a Pretty Fat. Since American books are so expensive in Israel, let me send you a copy. Sure, she attempts weight loss, only to gain it back in My Fair Lazy, but she is so funny.

    I am a size 20. I weigh 220 lbs, a clear 30 lbs over my husband. There, I said it.

    Fat, funny jewelry making plus girls unite!!!!!!

  3. Think about how a rough stone becomes polished and shiny through some pretty intense sanding.