Hi Friend –
Sorry for my absence as of late. My husband and I enjoyed our much needed vacation time.
While on my vacation – I did a lot of thinking of exactly what I wanted to write about next. During my stay at a Las Vegas hotel, I ran into a situation. During our last night at the hotel, my husband and I stepped onto the elevator on level 17, which was already occupied by a woman. The elevator stopped again on level 15 and a man looked in on us. His jaw dropped slightly as he stared at the three of us and his eyes widened. He said softly: “I’ll wait for the next one” – laughed slightly and then backed away shaking his head. The moment he said that, and the elevator doors closed, myself and the other woman shared in nervous laughter. I kept thinking to myself – “What was his problem?!” I even asked my husband as much while we walked towards the exit of the hotel.
A thousand reasons ran through my mind of why this guy did not want to stand in the elevator with the three of us. Then I thought to myself – “It’s because of my weight”. He thought the elevator was going to break with my weight on the elevator. I tossed and turned over this issue. It haunted me for days. I could feel my heart hammering against my chest at the thought that someone actually would not want to be in the same space with myself because of my weight. I was so positive that, that was the case. When we finally got home, I finally realized that I had no idea what the real reason was why that guy acted the way he did and WHY should it matter? I was never going to see him again. Why was I letting such a minor thing interfere with myself in such a major way?
The more I got to think about why I shouldn’t let it bother me, the more I thought about other similar issues I had let harm my self esteem this way and the fact that I was maybe hurting other people in this same way.
Let me elaborate. I have a hard time meeting new people – period. I don’t like to start conversations. I don’t like small talk. I don’t like the anxiety of hoping they like me. This goes double if the person I’m talking to is thin and/or attractive. I’m so sure that these people who are beautiful are just going to take one look at me and decide that I’m so disgusting and huge that I’m not worth their time and in turn – they aren’t worth mine. There was a large portion of my life (mainly in high school) that I had a very, very small closed group of friends. We did everything together, but those were the only people I would hang out with outside of school or have long conversations with.
I was so terrified of that rejection because I wasn’t good enough that I didn’t leave myself open to make new connections and meet other people. This is n issue that still haunts me today. I’m so terrified to go out and do fun things (i.e. group outings with work, outings with friends that include any kind of interaction with other people, etc.) because I am so sure that people are going to automatically judge me on my size. In a way – I am judging them on their size as well.
I have been lucky enough to meet some amazing people through my adult years that I fully trust and can be my full self with. A couple of those people have inspired me in such a way that I started this blog and started trying to find my positivity. Still – I can’t help but wonder about the other opportunities I missed out on because I was afraid of meeting new people and trying new things.
Being a plus sized woman, I never really thought of the hypocrisy of it all. I’m forcing an opinion based on the looks of another individual. I’m doing EXACTLY what I feared others would do to me. Body positivity – to me – shouldn’t be JUST to love yourself and the skin you’re in, but it should also be to not judge others based on the skin THEY are in. Yes, there are those once in a while jerks; however, it’s not worth the thousands of other people in this world you could possibly interact with in your lifetime. The nerd, the fat girl, the jock, the cheerleader, the beauty queen, the millionaire, the grandfather, the skateboarder, etc. – they are ALL people. All of them lead individual lives. You can’t possibly just group people together based solely on their job, their looks, their age, their title, their money, etc.
In summary – we all need to see pass these stereotypes that we place on other people, myself included. I for one and I’m going to push myself out their a lot further and not let being worried about what other people think hold me back. I’m not going to see myself as being judged, but being just a person talking to another person and possibly having an amazing conversation.
Thank you for reading.