food recovery / life / relationship

Husky Girl Size

I knew that I was fat, when I was about 8. I was bigger, I was the tallest in the class. I am a genetic making of German stock. I was told to finish my plate and was given ice cream milkshakes as a bonding tool for a post-divorce meltdown between my parents. They did they best they could, I’m not blaming at all.

I was called IHOP at school by the skinniest girl in class. I went to her birthday party and when I asked for a second cupcake, I’ll never forget the look of disgust on her Mom’s face. The fat girl wanting another cupcake. She told me no.

I distinctly remember a time when I went to a department store with my Grandma. She was going to buy me some new clothes.

We walked all around the store looking for things that would fit me. Thighs in my family were referred to as ‘thunder thighs’ by women, and I started to believe that I to had ‘thunder thighs’.

“Excuse me,” my Grandma asked the store attendant, “but, I was wondering if you had girls clothes in a bigger size.”

The store attendant looked at her perplexed. I remember feeling very embarrassed, what was my Grandma trying to get at?

“Umm, well maybe in a ‘husky’ size?” my Grandma said quietly, as though she was trying to find words to soften the blow of ‘fat, overweight, too big for kids clothes’. Trying to make it a non-issue, but trying to get to the point as quickly as possible.

“No, I’m sorry we don’t have clothes for ‘husky’ girls. But you can always try the teen or women’s sections,” the store attendant responded diplomatically.

I remember promising myself, at 10 years old, that I wouldn’t get over 190lbs. Once I got to 190lbs, that I’d stop eating candy bars. I’d take things seriously.

There’s NO WAY that I’ll blame any of my issues, short-comings, struggles with food on my family. I’m a 29 year old woman who makes daily decisions about the relationship that I have with everything. However, this memory was sparked by Miz’s run-in with a numbskull doctor who questioned her 7 year old daughter’s weight in front of her.

The thing is, is that we never know what innocent or direct conversation we have ‘over our children’ becomes absorbed and an anchor of self-worth, self-determination, self-image.

I don’t have children, but I often think about how I want them to have a healthy relationship with themselves, food, exercise, sexuality and self-image. For me, that starts now…in how I treat myself every single day. I struggle…but I won’t give up. Because there are too many  ‘little me’s’ out there who need survivors.

It starts with each one of us being mindful and gentle and observant of the language we use…because it does define when we don’t think it will.

Mish

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7 thoughts on “Husky Girl Size

    • It makes me sad to, but writing it is therapeutic. It’s exhausting trying to hide all the time. Thanks for reading. Promise to talk about my obsession with Mumfords soon!

  1. Oh Mish,
    I read your blog, word for word, every single time you post. I always smile, laugh, tear up or connect with you in some way.
    This post had me balling!
    I have two daughters. Linsey, 11, and Regan, 5. I want nothing more for them than health, love and happiness. I realized on February 7, 2001 (Linsey’s birthday) that the way I was living, obsessing over my ‘thunder thighs’ and constantly dieting was NOT the lifestyle I wanted to project to her.
    It takes work every single day.
    I’m not always successful.
    But I know that I tell my daughters I love them, they’re smart, they’re beautiful and they are important every single day.
    Conversations about food, health, weight and fitness are touchy when having them with young girls so I follow their lead. I hope the decisions I make now will help them to make good decisions and love themselves for exactly who they are.

    And — you are beautiful — in every way a woman can be beautiful. 🙂

    • Thanks 🙂 I think it’s important that we as women really look at how we are treating ourselves..because they become the patterns of little girls. Good on ya for realising that so early on with your own daughters. Thank you for your support, always. ~M

  2. Full-blooded Norwegian on my mom’s size. The women are all Amazons! I’m 5’11” and hit that height in junior high. Always felt like a moose, but see photos of my high school years and realize I wasn’t fat or even husky, just very long-torso-ed and long-legged. Sheesh. One thing I will give my mom and aunts and grandmas credit for, they NEVER made us feel like we were over-sized or too big. I’m grateful for that. And yes, we need to make sure the young girls around us are not getting sent the wrong messages either! And it does start with the language we use with our own self. You are wise to recognize that!

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