Fitness & Fatness are NOT mutually exclusive

Gift of Fat. Yes. Gift. It is. Really. Really.

But that doesn’t mean I love being fat. Because I don’t.

It doesn’t mean that health isn’t important to me. Because it is.

I mean, I have 3 small kids (8,5 & 2). I’d like to watch them graduate college, get married (or take Holy Orders), and win the Nobel Prize. I’d like to do it without being in a wheelchair due to diabetes, or other yucky ailment.

I am not diabetic. (Thanks God!). But I am wwwaaayyyyyyyyy too close for comfort. I also live in the “Fattest City in the US”, according to Men’s Health Magazine. (We’re Number 1!!)

In response, our city is putting on a really cool event. It’s Called Fit & Free by the Sea. And I am taking my whole family. I am also participating in the Biggest Loser competition. And my fitness partner is none other than Dr. Mark Escamilla, President of Del Mar College. Dr. Mark is an innovative leader in our city. He was named Newsmaker of the Year by the Corpus Christi Caller Times. And he’s my Boss’s Boss. Gulp.

No worries. Even if I lose 50 lbs, I’ll still be fat. Fitter, but Fat. And even if all my fat went away tomorrow (which would be fine with me!) I would still be an advocate for fat women, I would still blog about the Gift of Fat. We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it, OK?

One of the Gifts of Fat I’ve received is the look of surprise and admiration I receive from people when they see me doing things that fat people don’t normally do. Next time I’ll tell you about it.

Mom’s Great Advice

When I was about 7, I came home from school crying again.

The other kids (boys, usually) were mean to me again.

My mom came into my room, rubbed my back and said “Honey, as long as you are chubby, the other kids will make fun of you. You are going to have to develop a thicker skin, and not let it bother you.”

In other words: I can’t control them, but I can control how I react to them.

That control has made all the difference.

This Gift Is. . . .

Humor.

That’s not necesarily the first gift of fat, but it is the first one I thought of.

I’m funny. I’m really funny. I’m not just a clown — although I can be. I am witty, sharp, silly and irreverant. I told a priest that the secret to a long and happy marriage is a well timed blowjob. (Well, it IS!)

Here’s how being fat MADE me funny.

There was a boy who lived down the street from me named Eddie W. He was mean. When we waited at the bus stop to be driven to Jefferson Junior High, he would sing his favorite polka: Roll out the Mary. He sang all the words:

“Roll out the Mary. . .Mary is Big and Fat. Roll out the Mary. . . Mary is really Fat. Roll out the Mary, Mary is really FAT. Now it’s time to roll out the Mary, because she’ll Roll on YOU!” (obviously Eddie W was not fat, because these words are not witty or particularly original).

As the target of these taunts, I had 2 choices:
1. Cry & say “Shut up!”
2. Accompany his song with my Air Tuba, singing “Oooom-pah, ooom-pah-pah, oooom-pah, ooom-pah-pah-pah”.

I chose option 2. And choosing option 2 made everyone laugh. Not AT me. WITH me. My favorite line in Funny Girl is when Ziegfield tells Fanny Brice that the audience was laughing at her, Fanny (Barbara Striesand) said: “Yes, but it’s MY joke.”

That’s just it. It’s MY joke.

If I really thought about it, I could come up with a million examples of where I turned teasing to my benefit. Hell, 35 years later, I’m starting to be grateful for the teasing. How else could I have sharpened my skills? Eddie W. was certainly not alone in teasing the fat girl. But I remember him.

One of the reasons I remember him is because he was killed when we were in our 30s. During my weekly call to my mom, she casually mentioned that he was in a car accident and had been killed.

Me: “Oh, what a shame”.
Mom: “Little Bastard, he had it coming to him. He was the one who used to sing ‘Roll out the Mary'”.

So Eddie. You couldn’t hurt me. But you hurt my mom. I have long since forgiven you. I am not so sure about Mom though.

Next time I’ll post about my Mom. I’ll tell you the advice she gave me that allows me to recognize the Gift of Fat.

Wierd name, right?

I have long planned to write a book entitled The Gift of Fat. It was going to be published in 2009. But I had a baby (which is my excuse for EVERYTHING) and didn’t get very far in my book.

Pretty much have the title.

It’s an awesome title, right? I mean no one thinks fat is a GIFT! Fat sux! Fat is ugly. Fat is awful.

But, as a lifelong fat girl, I can tell you that in many ways. . ..Fat is a gift.

Don’t believe me? Then read my blog tomorrow. I’ll tell you the first gift.