Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Throwing Out The 300-Pound Pitch


In an interview in 2008, Neal Conan asked Carrie Fisher on “Talk of the Nation” why she wrote “Wishful Drinking,” a memoir about her experience with manic depression, addiction and ECT, particularly given its stigma. She answered: “The thing about telling it is, if I make it a secret, it has enormous power. Then I have to be scared. ‘Will they find out?’ And I’m, like, ‘If you find it out about me, I’ve already got there first, so you’re gonna hear my version.’”

Google my name and it’s easy to find me and my 300-pound truth. I put it out there willingly in 2005, hoping to find kindred spirits, people who were on a path to embracing their own truth about weight. With more than 1.5 million page hits since 2005, clearly there are more than a few of us out there seeking that truth.

I don’t mind telling you I was 300 pounds. You get it. It’s not so easy telling someone with whom you’re out on a first date and you’re ordering a salad and he’s ordering wings with blue cheese dressing and he jokingly says, “New Year’s resolution?” and I say, “Well, kinda.”

The story of me isn’t an easy story to digest, so to speak. It’s one thing to say, “I weighed 300 pounds seven years ago.” It’s quite another to say, “My weight impacts my life every day.” Some women seek tall, dark and handsome. Me? I seek someone who won’t eat Doritos in front of me.

In Pittsburgh, we call it “nebbing.” When you want to find out about someone, you neb. I have one of the nebbiest neighbors ever. He’s forever watching my house. There isn’t a light that goes on or goes off that he doesn’t know about. He’s harmless enough, but it’s a little unnerving having your every move observed.

That’s kind of how it feels when I meet someone new and they find out my name. They’re gonna neb. Heck, I do it, too! But I prefer he hear my weighty truth from my lips and not from a photo of 300-pound me in a purple dress contrasted with the me he has just met. Yes, my blog is my truth and my voice, but for someone who isn’t accustomed to reading weight loss blogs, my blog can be a lot of truth to take in without some prior warning.

While I don’t consider obesity a character flaw, many in this world do, especially the judgy mcjudgers who tease, roll their eyes, and all out hate fat people. So there’s an added chance of judgment I have to take when the “So tell me about yourself” convo starts.

A few years ago, I met someone who, after a few dates, asked me straight up about loose skin. “Do you have any?” was his exact question. My response? “You’ll never find out,” and I kicked him out.

Now while that sounds all bold and Go Me, in truth it was embarrassing and it made me wonder how many other men would wonder the same thing.

It wasn’t long after that that I met C and we dated for about 18 months. My truth became a part of our relationship, an almost non-entity except that he didn’t eat Doritos in front of me. Now that I’m single once more, I’m wondering if I have it in me to, as I wrote in 2011, “…roll my eyes back and throw it out there again,” a reference to that the scene in Bull Durham when Nuke is on the mound wearing Annie Savoy’s garter and he rolls his eyes back and pitches the ball.

My choices are either stay in and hide or get out there and try. I choose to try. After all, I was who I was and I am who I am and the guy up to bat has a number of options of what to do with that curve ball. If it’s to inquire about loose skin, then he isn’t worthy. If it’s to stick around, then I’ll explain the part about the Doritos.

13 comments:

  1. I'm still trying to get the nerve to throw my first pitch. It's been years... it's hard. I'm happy to see you're going for it!

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  2. I loved ya as you was and I love you as you is -- RLS

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  3. This post resonated with me quite a bit, Lynn. After losing 50 pounds I have ventured into the dating world, and it is not easy. I think all of us (who are worth knowing) have something that we would rather not share with a potential partner. I am an accomplished professional woman who let me weight rule me for many years--and I have things other than my weight that need to come up in conversations early on with men I date and that could be potential issues for men. However, I have tried to approach the situation by being honest and telling the other person that if he can't deal with "my stuff," he should move on. It is not always easy to do that, but I have to remember that I am worthy of having a meaningul relationship.

    Anyway, it is nice to know that there are others out there who are trying to navigate this whole dating world. It sure as heck isn't easy!

    Ali

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  4. I am glad I am not in the dating scene after losing weight. I find it is a subject that I don't really bring up to new people I meet. It's just awkward. Every once in a while if it comes up as part of a conversation, like about being fit while biking or something - but it still makes me uncomfortable.

    You are awesome, btw :D

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  5. You wrote this with the wisdom and understanding that only one who has been through the fire can describe. You really, really get it, Lynn, and I'm so glad you're back.

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  6. I'm glad you're back also Lynn. Your posts always resonate with me on some level. Thank you.

    It's so hard to be judged by others who haven't walked similar paths. My latest situation? I've started baring my arms.....wiggly post 100 pound weight loss arms. I get several 'judgy' looks - even in yoga class from other women....but I just keep reminding myself that at least I HAVE arms and I'm trying to embrace and love them.

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  7. I am glad that there are people out there that understand that its better to tell the truth and what happen first then to let others tell it for you. You are right that you have to find someone that fits you and where you are trying to be. Its not easy since you may find someone you really like but know its not going to work.
    Dating isn't easy, so glad and lucky to have my wife.

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  8. WOW! What an awesome truth! My favorite line is a man that won't eat Doritos in front of me! isn't that the truth about food thoughts that take over constantly!
    I have not lost my weight, still swimming in the what if's and the power the food thoughts have. YES, they have diminished in their power but still ever present. My current husband (1.5)years is the man that loved me but still carries some of that weight stigma questions HOWEVER it is questions from him that help me...not as a doing it for him, will he judge me perspective but because he wants to understand and find a way to help me. The deep down #1 reason I said yes....he BELIEVES me and wants to UNDERSTAND me. He truly wants whats best for me even though sometimes his opinions and questions trigger my flying monkey thoughts of food and weight. Isn't that the whole point of the Bull Durham scene. To strip ourselves, be vulnerable and change our OWN thinking......Sorry so long but this post was INCREDIBLE! YOU already threw that pitch! Now trust where it is headed! xoxo

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  9. (your spam comments are killing me today, lol)

    Not dating (it might upset my husband), but I totally get it about having people find out, even though I'm not that person anymore...or AM I??? I still don't advertise my blog on my personal FB page because of that.

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  10. My BF has had quite a lot of drama in her life over the years specifically in regards to her husband, and I have always admired them for being very upfront about what was going on. It seems hard for me, but its just like you pointed out, by NOT keeping it a secret, it loses some of its power.

    Is this the same as when I call myself a b%@%h first, as a preemptive strike against anyone who might think that about me? I guess not...

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  11. So glad to see you're back. I always have looked to you for insightful posts and interesting perspectives. Welcome home.

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  12. It is like a weird, past-chapter secret. One we might want to pretend never happened, but can't.

    My solution when getting to know new friends, when we are becoming close, is to pull out my library card. It has a pic of my face at almost 300 pounds. Just my way of letting them know... and the reactions let ME know whether or not I want to deepen the friendship.

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  13. Asif someone would ask that! If ur feelin someone it shouldn't matter!

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