Did you ever…?
Did you ever wonder why our society is so obsessed with weight that they believe any adult who weighs over twelve pounds is obese? I never thought much about it until I noticed that I could either wear my clothes or breathe. I couldn’t do both. When and how did I gain all this weight? At first I tried telling myself that I hadn’t really gained a lot of weight and that the weight I had just shifted around. For example, no one will ever convince me that my chest hadn’t fallen down around my stomach and just had to be pushed back up. I also looked thinner if I was lying down on my back and was willing to go everywhere by gurney cart.
Nothing was going to make me go on a diet until I went to a clothing shop to buy some new pants. The salesman was about my own age, but he was so thin, I felt sure there was only room for one stripe on his pajamas. When he told me that they had nothing I could fit into and that I should try the “stylishly stout” section, I punched him in the stomach and walked out. Before I would concede and go to the new store in the mall called “Tubby’s”, I bought a few books and magazines on dieting and healthy eating. All the people in those books were unbelievable because not one of them weighed more than the turkey my sister cooked for Christmas dinner. How could I ever hope to look like that?
After two weeks of healthy eating and dieting, I gained another ten pounds. The exercise program caused me to gain another five pounds. I just couldn’t win.
The complete starvation diet was beginning to work, and I was really losing a lot of weight, but it wasn’t easy to put up with the dizziness and shortness of breath when I chewed gum or tried to breathe.
Finally, when I decided to stop all the dieting, get dressed and go to the grocery store for some real food, I noticed that my clothes didn’t cut off my oxygen supply or the arterial blood flow. My neck didn’t swell-up when I buttoned my shirt and I didn’t feel like I was in a cardboard mailing tube. I raced to the bathroom scale and discovered that I was back to my normal weight. It was the first time in weeks I had weighed myself because a month ago I almost came unglued when the scale groaned, wheezed and announced, “One at a time please.”
My neighbour Mark and his wife were just coming home from grocery shopping when I was going to my car. Mark’s wife said that I looked thin and pale and asked if I had been ill. I told her that I had been dieting and eating healthy food. Mark commented that my idea of healthy food was a hot fudge sundae with melted marshmallows. His wife said than being thin was out of fashion and that the “chunky” look was “in”. When she suggested that I try to gain some weight, I promised myself that I was never going to speak to either one of them again. However, a hot fudge sundae wasn’t such a bad idea.
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“Did you ever…?” is a weekly newspaper column by Melech
©Copyright 2009 by Melech. All Rights reserved.
The next column will be posted on July 4, 2009