Tuesday, November 08, 2005


I am not the fattest girl in the class.

This comes as somewhat of a surprise to me. By some miracle of natural selection, I find that I am not the weakest, nor the slowest, nor the most out of shape. Should we suddenly be faced with an eat-or-be-eaten situation, I would survive. This comes as a sort of morbid relief, as does the fact that I do not have the biggest legs, the biggest butt, or the biggest waistline. It’s amazing what I will cling to when I’m desperate…

Twenty-some women pour into the mirrored room each week. Twenty-some women grab step boxes and floor mats, dumbbells and body bars, water bottles and stretch bands, arranging themselves where they can either see, be seen, or hide completely, depending on their own love/hate relationship with the mirror. Twenty-some women pant and sweat and groan for an hour—perky, skinny ones with pony-tails and coordinated workout clothes that show off their perfectly tanned and toned abs and overweight ones with well-worn, oversize 1980’s concert t-shirts that whimper “for the love of God, please don’t look at me…”

Skinny ones, fat ones, tall ones, short ones, pretty ones, not-so-pretty ones, even a few unsightly ones. As my two-year-old says, “De good, de bad, an’ de ug-wee.” I find myself somewhere in the middle. And for once in my life, I’m happy with that.

I have no delusions of being buff. Or ripped. Or any other bizarre colloquialism referring to an unobtainable level of physical “perfection.” I will never be skinny—genetics, hormones, metabolic make-ups, bone structures, and the after-effects of carrying two nearly-nine-pound babies have sealed my fate. Add to that the fact I hate to workout with a passion almost as great as my passion for food, and there you have it. Thin will never be in my future. But average… well, average might be another story…

That word would have once made my inner perfectionist shudder, but I am slowly becoming more comfortable with it. Or, perhaps, it is merely becoming slightly less offensive to me, though I’m not entirely certain what was so offensive about it in the first place. For whatever reason, in our “Be All That You Can Be” culture, I am beginning to look realistically at where I am and making the decision that where I am IS all I can be at the moment.

5’2”, 135 lbs, size 10. Average height, average weight, average size. No delusions, no excuses, no comparisons. I will be the best average I can be.

I am not the fattest girl in the class. I can live with that.

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