Wednesday, 8 October 2014


When I was younger all I cared about
were the numbers on a scale that would tell me
if I should be praised for smaller numbers
if I was worthy;

Or if I should be punished for lacking discipline,
self-preservation, motivation, a desire to succeed
Because where I come from, a girl's weight
is her defining trait, the only she could need;

Then I grew older and up and sideways
two dress sizes bigger life still went on
And men started to call me curvy
and used words I never thought
would be associated with me -
womanly, sexy.

But beyond the numbers on a scale
I grew up and found a desire within me
to put aside the digits and care
about living longer, being healthier,
so I wouldn't put my loved ones in despair.

In growing up I realized
the weight that matters isn't related to BMI
but the weight that we shoulder
of baggage from the past
of fears of the future
bills of the present.

This weight is real, it matters far more
than whether your stomach looks flat in
that bodycon dress;
I'll gladly carry the weight of my responsibilities
be healthy, be happy, as for the rest --
I couldn't care less.

* * *
I think I never realized this when I was younger, but I was bullied as a child and as a teenager for being overweight. I dismissed them as "jokes" because they weren't anything like the hardcore bullying that gets reported in newspapers or made into Hallmark movies, but as I grew older I realized that I was bullied -- but just never knew to label it that way because being hurt and going home crying couldn't possibly mean that my "friends" were bullying me. Eventually - when I have more time! - I will vlog about that experience and the revelations that came out of it, because I think there are a lot of young girls out there who go through the same things... and don't know why it makes them so sad. I just wanted to take five minutes to say hey, you're not alone, and I came out stronger so you will too!