...was called obese
Yup as I sit here eating a bowl of fruit, I'm literally rolling my eyes the fact that this is the THIRD time that I have been called obese in the last 8 years. One of these pictures below was taken at a time when I was NOT called obese, can you guess which one? Here's a clue, the last picture is me last week, just before my latest obesity scare.
Now working in a school and dealing with teenagers with mental health issues, often bought on by negative body image promoted by a multitude of media outlets, or sometimes just some straight up mean girling from their so called BFFs; I know how damaging flippant comments can be. I have even noticed a change over the years that the boys are just as anxious and self conscious as the girls.
So what bought on the latest onset of obesity shaming? Well, what with being 30, and a home owner, I was finally acknowledging that although, yes, I would much rather spend my hard earned pennies on a new midi body con dress (which after this conversation, I should clearly be wearing a flowery tent dress that can hide a multitude of sins), I should actually be spending that money on a life insurance policy, if only so that when my sweet husband finally snaps and pushes me down the stairs because I have left my clothes strewn across the floor and he has tripped over one of my stiletto shoes and nearly broken his neck for the millionth time, even though he has given me (ahem, I commandeered) a shoe closet in order to keep my hundreds of shoes in some sort of order. That once he had committed murder most foul, that he would still have a roof over his head. It would definitely be uncontested as my family would probably testify that I am incredibly messy and just a little bit irritating so probably had it coming to me anyway!
So I found a decent policy and spent 20 minutes on the phone to a Scottish call centre worker answering some scripted health questions. Apart from being pretty darn accident prone, and disrespecting my body by throwing it around the Netball and Basketball court with reckless abandon, I'm in pretty good nick. So how was it that after a series of questions I went from a low premium to it costing me £20 extra a month after one question was asked. My height and weight. As soon as I heard that increase, I asked what had triggered it to which the script reading Scotsman told me "It's your BMI, you're obese".
Just. Like. That!
I know that its this guys job, and he is a slave to the words on the page in front of him, despite this, gave it to him with both barrels:
"You do know BMI is an outdated concept based on war time rations"
"You are aware that people from the black community always fair worse on BMI as it doesn't take into consideration our body set up"
"You do realise that I life weights and muscle weighs more than fat"
"You do know you're a MASSIVE PRICK for dropping this O bomb so casually on a Wednesday night"
And then I hung up, because ultimately, I was mortified. I'd been O-ffended, O-blitereated O-besed. I think we all have an image of what obesity looks like, I am a 5 foot 5 who can wear a size 12 on a good day but mainly lives in 14's apart from around large chest (how I run with my extra weighted chesticles sometimes I think its a miracle I don't take my own eye out). I actually reckon if I wanted to lose a stone I would just have to have breast reduction.
But this BMI, or Bloody Massive Innit, takes your height and weight and bobs you uncle, we will fit everyone onto the same scale and spit out your body description. My friend from New Zealand once told me that her entire school class were morbidly obese based on BMI, she then showed me pictures of what I can only describe of Amazonian athletic beauties, and I wanted to know who was the person brave enough to try and tell them that "fact", and did they live to tell the tale?
The first time I was told I was the O word was when I had registered for a new doctors. I stood on the scales for the nurse who actually very clearly was suffering from a weight affliction of her own, took some sort of glee in announcing my O status. It was the first time that I had heard it, so I was very upset, especially as I had just finished training and was feeling pretty slim. I tried to joke with her "I don't look obese though do I?" to which she looked me up and down and shrugged as if to say "Actually you do". That night I lay in bed with all the comebacks I should have said, you know, the classic weak bants, "Those in glasses houses love" etc; but it was too late, the ship had sailed, and I'm sad to say that me and my "chunky monkey" self developed a bit of a short lived problem with food where I didn't eat more that 500 calories for 3 weeks. I lived off lucozade, 10 dry roasted nuts and a smoothie a day, and it wasn't until my teacher training mentor told me to "get a grip you look fine" that I did get a grip, because my actions were as damaging as her words, because words, any words, can be dangerous if they are used without engaging some common sense! That and I'm not going to lie, I quite like my food!
So yeah, I am exercising at the moment, but not to fight my "Obesity", but because thats what I have always done, and will always do and as long as I feel happy, screw statistics. Imma do me, so you do you!
p.s the answer was the second one, call it a bad camera angle, or cider bloat, but that was the one time I could have been called O, and wasn't!