Tuesday, December 18, 2012


Pretending to be normal is exhausting.  This week has been a pretty bad one for that.  Sleep deprivation just adds to the problem.  I know that I should be grateful, my stress is NOTHING compared to what some people are dealing with right now  - I am not mourning a very fresh loss of a spouse or child.  I am not engaged in battle on a foreign shore.  I am not waiting for that dreadful phone call/visit from the military telling me my spouse didn't survive the battle.  I am not struggling to have enough to eat, or a roof over my head, or a job.  I am incredibly, incredibly, blessed.  Knowing this just adds some guilt to the mix, though.

Does that ever happen with you?  You're feeling down, and you're not entirely sure why, but then you feel even worse because you feel guilty for feeling down in the first place because you know that you really don't have anything about which to feel down....it's a vicious cycle.  It's also exhausting.

As I get ready to go to bed tonight, here are my thoughts and wishes for you:  may this holiday season not wear you out.  May your loved ones arrive at their destinations safely with no hassles.  May your health improve.  May you have a day to just be you.

Thank you for reading....

Monday, December 17, 2012

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Grieving Again

This past couple weeks has been pretty hard.  Truth be told, the whole year has been hard, but the last couple weeks have just made it worse.  As many people much more eloquent than I have written, there was a shooting yesterday at a school in Connecticut.  I will not be writing about that here, as I don't feel that I have anything to add to the conversation, other than that all the families affected are in my prayers.  Two weeks ago, one of my classmates lost her husband prematurely.  (and while yes, even at 90 it feels premature to the remaining spouse, just like in the loss of my dear sweet friend in February, my classmate had only 11 years with her husband.  At our ages, they should have had 60 more.)  All this death reminds me that our lives here on earth are not guaranteed, and are very precious indeed.

The loss of my classmate's husband made me feel the loss of O.C. even more.  It was a reminder that she was gone.  I don't remember if O.C. and J.L. were at school at the same time - but I hope that they have met up in heaven and sent some love down to their spouses who miss them so very very much.  That may not be a Biblical picture of heaven, but I find it comforting to think that when you get there, you see some people you know, and don't get lonely at all.

Of course, then I remember that we are going to be so very overcome with the joy and grandeur of seeing Jesus face to face that the things that worried us here will be forgotten.  Heaven won't be a scary place; it won't matter that we go there alone, because we won't be alone when we arrive.  We will truly know peace, and feel pure love, without the distortions of the world interfering.

Knowing this doesn't lessen my selfish tears, though.  I didn't know my classmate or her husband very well, but I knew them well enough to know that they are the kind of people about which you say "Why them?".  And with O.C., well, I did know her well enough to ask God why there couldn't be another way.  Part of me is jealous that she has all the answers before me (which is kind of how it was in life too - she was a very smart woman!), and the other part is mad that God took her away.  I want my friend back.

Then I feel guilty, because although she was very very loved, life was painful for her.  I shouldn't want my friend back, because that would mean a return from Heaven's bliss to the horrible, horrible pain of the things she's endured.  I should be happy that God has rescued her from this body of death and that she will never again know pain, or fear, or abandonment.

It makes me feel like a bad friend.  If I truly loved her, I would be happy for her.  But I can't help but be sad for her husband, her daughter, her friends, her parents, and me.

That sadness extends now to my classmate. I don't know their situation.  Maybe life was wonderful, and this was as sudden from the inside as it appears from the outside.  Maybe there were struggles there that outsiders couldn't see, didn't know about.  That is not for me/us to know.

I do know this: God works in every situation, perhaps more in the tragedies.  I cherish my living friends all the more now because I lost O.C.  I have seen a whole community rally around J.L.'s wife both prayerfully and financially.  (you can help too, by going to Everyday Kings and allowing the page to load - the author is donating her revenue to my classmate for the month of December).

I don't pretend to have any answers.  And really, this isn't about me, not in the end.  But here's to hoping  knowing the coming year has to be better than the last.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Been a while....

It's been a while since I felt inspired to write anything.  I wish I could say it's because my life is going so swimmingly well, but it feels like it's not.  That's the crappy thing about depression.  Superficially speaking, my life is going VERY well.  It's just that my eyes are looking at the world with feces colored lenses.

I haven't been able to afford one of my meds, and I haven't taken it in about a month.  This medication really helped control some of the annoying parts of being an Aspie.  The last few weeks have been a nightmare - every sound and smell at work has been driving me nuts.  The fluorescent lights and their incessant humming, the glare of the computer screen, the flashing light when my phone rings, the sound of someone laughing (and why do I always feel they are laughing at/about me?) and all the chatter in the background - these things eat away at my ability to stay calm and focused and get my work done.

There have also been a few events that would be sad or depressing for anyone.  It has been six months since my friend died.  I miss her every day, in a way that I never missed her when she was alive, even though she lived halfway across the country and we rarely got to speak.  Just knowing she was there if I needed to speak with her, or she with me, was enough to not feel the distance.  It gets more and more real that she is gone, and I miss her so.  I also lost my dog a little over a month ago.  Even though her "dad" had custody of her, she was still a great comfort to me when I was sad.  Nothing can cheer you up like a dog licking your tears as they fall.

We increased my other med, and I got a refill on the one I can't afford.  I'm going to try taking that one on an as-needed basis, since it's not like an anti-depressant, where you need to keep it in your system at a steady level.  That should help it last longer.  Then I can get to work on cleaning my lenses.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Breaking out of Anonymity (kinda sorta)

My plan here was to always be anonymous.  Not because I don't want people I know to read what I have written, but because I wanted people to read it for what I have written, not because they know me.  There are only two people on the planet right now who know my real identity - R.E., who has had a previous shout out, and my brother.

My brother came out to visit me a few months ago, and we were talking about his writing.  He has a song on itunes and a few essays on kindle.  I respect his opinion, so I asked him if he wouldn't mind hearing some of my blog.  I read him a few entries, and he mentioned that one of them should be published.

And so, in a minor way, I will be breaking my anonymity to the wider public.  I am editing the post about my grandma and submitting it to Guideposts magazine.  If they choose to publish, my cover will be blown.  So to speak.

I am pretty sure I am OK with that.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

A Month is a Long Time

I miss my friend.  I miss her so much.  I can't even imagine what it is like for her family, and I feel so selfish for my own grief, when I should be there for them.  I try to be, anyhow.

I have some stuff going on now in my life that I really really wish she was here to discuss with me.  Her guidance would be so helpful right now.  She had the best insight sometimes.  And she could tell me if what I was doing was wrong and if I should stop.

How long will I feel like this?

Happier post next time, I promise.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Let's Repeal Daylight Savings Time

I don't have anything too important to say today.  (Do I ever? - no, don't answer that!)  My butt was kicked by losing that hour of sleep last night.  Does that happen to you, too?

Of course, in October, I just love it!  Or is it November now?  Either way, it's my favorite day of the whole year!

On a more serious/relevant note, I am learning a lot from my association with the online fat community.  Thank you to each and every one of you who contribute there, be it in your own blogs, someone else's blog comments, or in various Facebook groups.  You are helping me grow, so I am sure you are helping others too!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Inherited Fatness

I am the sixth generation of fatty in my family.  And yet people are still surprised that we are all fat.  It doesn't seem to matter how much I exercise, or how healthily I eat; I must be lying about it, or else I wouldn't be so fat, right?
I had a long conversation with a family member today about this.  The Asperger's runs in the family on that side, the fat on the other side.  This family member was resistant to the idea of Asperger's at first, until someone suggested my nephew may have it too.  You see, this family member is the other Aspie in the family.  *grin*  She's starting to see that it doesn't make you a weirdo, and it doesn't mean there is something wrong with you.  But it still seems like she thinks there is something fundamentally broken in the fat members of the family.
I got a little excited/cranky on the phone tonight.  I generally don't medicate on Saturdays because I don't leave my house, and I am running low on meds and don't have the money to refill.  Which means what would have been a calm conversation yesterday ended up with me being more defensive than normal today.
Don't worry, I did apologize.  I'm not a bad person, just an emotional one.  When I was calmer, I did get her to see that since I have discovered HAES, my weight has stabilized.  It has gone down a little, but I am just happy to be stable.  I don't think there is anything wrong with being larger than I am - I just can't afford to buy new clothes again, and I am getting close to the point where I wouldn't be able to get them from the store anymore.
I digress.  I think I got somewhere tonight.  She wanted someone else in the family to diet.  I said I didn't think that was the best thing for the other person.  She's looking for the copy of Health at Every Size by Linda Bacon that I bought them last year now.  I hope she finds it.  I would like to see the other person in my family happier and not feeling bad about his size.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Good Grief

It has been 9 days since my very good friend left this world.  She was like a sister to me.  As much as I love my blood sisters, she was even more of a sister because I chose her.  I don't know why God took her at such a young age.  I only know that she is gone from this earth and is truly in a much better place - of that I have no doubt.
My friend was a very strong woman.  She suffered a lot in her few years.  It seems unfair in many ways that her time here had to be so marred with pain.  On the other hand, she can now see the whole picture, of which we can't see more than the tiniest pixel.  She is looking at Jesus face to face.  For this I should rejoice.  She will never again know pain.  Every question that we have ever had - she has the answer now.  Considering the joy set before her, I wonder if her new knowledge even matters.  I mean, who cares if Adam had a belly button when you are walking the golden streets with the Big Guy!
I learned something about my participation and vocalization in the size acceptance movement while I was at her funeral luncheon.  This is the part that we leave out so much when we talk about loving our bodies and ourselves regardless of size.  We focus so much on the politics of size and instersectionality, and we forget this very very important aspect:  we are as God made us.  He does not make mistakes.  He knows what He is going to do with us - and He has big plans for us.
You are probably saying to yourself "Fat Aspie, you have gone off the deep end.  God does not have some grand plan for fat people."  Maybe not fat people specifically.  But all people, yes.  God loves each and every one of us - even the people who don't believe in Him, or don't believe in organized religion, or don't have perfect behavior.  He loves ALL of us.
I have read in other blogs things that made me so sad; that people claiming the name of Christ would use His name to tear down others for their size.  If you loved Jesus, you wouldn't be fat.  Gluttony is a sin.  And if it were as simple as gluttony causing fatness, and not being gluttonous causing weight loss, I might could maybe think about buying that argument.  But guess what?  The two don't always go together.
My friend had a ministry in which she made sure that young people knew their place in the Kingdom.  She made sure that they knew that as children of The King (no, not Elvis) they are princes and princesses.  She did not want these teens to lose sight of their worth as they matured in this world that often tells us we are worthless.  Someone at her luncheon pointed out to me that what I do can also be a ministry.  (Thank you, R.E.)
Someone needs to be a voice to counteract the people that tell us fatties that we are sinful for being fat.  Someone needs to stand up and shout "GOD LOVES ALL HIS CHILDREN".  Someone needs to gently whisper that loving your body enough to take care of it by eating healthy foods and moving with joy as you are able is an act of worship.
Using what God gave you to serve Him - lifting your hands in praise, shouting joyfully, walking through His nature, enjoying the food he has provided you - these are acts of worship.  Cooking for your friends and family, thanking Him for your strong, healthy, ample body - also worship.  God loves us, and he loves it when we focus on Him.
I made a little song from a children's song....

Jesus loves the fatty children
All the fatty children of the world
With our rolls and cellulite
We are precious in his sight
Jesus loves the fatty children of the world

No matter what your religious beliefs are, I hope you take some time to realize that you are a precious, beautiful, worthwhile creation.  The feats accomplished by our bodies on a daily basis are little miracles.  (Big miracles if you think about all the things that have to work together just for something as simple as processing our food).  Even if you do not believe you are created, know that you are wonderful.  You don't have to wait until you are x pounds lighter to be wonderful or to be loved, because you already are.
I love this song by Superchic(k) and I hope you will like it too!  If every girl could see her beauty we could be an army....(sorry about the advert at the beginning of the video, but I wanted to make sure the link would always be good, so I used the official one from the record label)

Saturday, February 18, 2012

An Open Letter to Strong4Life

Strong4Life, I am going to tell you a little story, an extended analogy if you will. It may seem at the beginning like it really doesn't apply to you, but it does, so please bear with me.
Think back to your high school days. The jocks were really kind of jerks. You could think of other words to describe them, but you try to give them the benefit of the doubt. There is this one jock who is worse than all the others. He's just mean. And your best friend is going out with him! What? She's compassionate, sweet, smart, funny...all the things this guy is NOT.
So you ask your friend, "Why are you going out with *him*? He's such a jerk!" and your friend tells you that he's really not like that, that he is such a great guy once you get to know him. You're really skeptical. I mean, you saw this guy push the clumsy kid out of the way in the hall and laugh when the kid fell. He said it was the kid's fault for being so clumsy and that if he would just get some grace he would be able to get out of the way. What an impression that made on you!
You are active in interscholastic activities, so you have come into contact with jocks that are nice to the kids that aren't in the "in" crowd. Those kids are so much happier looking than the ones at your school!
In the meantime, your friend invites you to hang out with her and her boyfriend one weekend. You are filled with trepidation. You've seen with your own eyes how mean he can be to people. But she's your best friend, and so you say yes.
It turns out that this Alpha Jock really*is* a nice guy. So you ask him why the meanness in school? He tells you that all jocks are jerks in public. That's the way it has always been.
You're not sure he will listen, but you tell him about how his actions make the other kids feel. How even though he might feel bad privately about how his actions hurt the kids in school, there are kids that look up to him and will think that what he is doing is OK - the same way that he thought it was OK because that's what he has always seen. You tell him about the other schools you have seen, and how much happier everyone is there.
Some days, it feels like you are just beating your head against the wall trying to get him to see that his outer persona makes it so hard to see what a great guy he is on the inside. If your conversations are overheard at school, the cheerleaders call you names and tell you to toughen up and get with the program.
Still, you feel like there is a possibility that maybe, just maybe, you can help this guy see the error of his ways and make a change. You know how hard it is to change your public face. After all, he's got his whole image invested in being this jerk. He may lose his position as Alpha Jock if he starts showing how kind he really is. You tell him how he could really be a trendsetter, a leader rather than following the status quo. "Imagine a school where it's not the same kids playing intramural sports all the time...where they all feel comfortable playing" you tell him.
You keep hoping your efforts will lead somewhere, but so far, nothing has happened.
Strong4Life, you are the jock in this story. I know that your program is FULL of awesome ideas and that its core is good. But the public campaign is, to put it bluntly, mean. I know you would lose face if you were to change the public face of the campaign now and admit that the advertisements were misguided. 
It would take a lot of courage on your part to publicly change everything. I believe you have that courage deep inside you, directors of this campaign. I don't just come to your page and make posts that seem like they are against you. I believe in every post I have made I have pointed out that you have really really good ideas. I just wish they were inclusive of all kids.
It's not just you, it's our whole society. We are all guilty of being quick to lay blame somewhere and not look deeper for more lasting solutions. 
You have an AMAZING opportunity here to be a groundbreaker - to be the first institution of your size with your scope of influence to promote healthy eating and active play explicitly for ALL kids. Calling this initiative to have a healthier generation a war on obesity really does leave out the kids who are average sized and smaller. Imagine your new tagline - "Calling ALL kids to be Strong4Life!" or "Everyone can be Strong4Life!" You could reach so many more people. And you would have overwhelming support for that. All the blogging moms, all the fierce fatties, all the just regular people like me. The NIH, Jillian Michaels, the NEDA....I can't speak for these last three, but I have a sneaking suspicion that they would be more than happy to get behind a revamped campaign.
Please take my comments into consideration. I really just want to have a rational conversation with you all on this. Think of how much MORE good you could be doing if you didn't have to focus so many resources on detractors. 
You have always given my comments good responses; I always felt that you were being fair and not dismissive. Even though this one is the size of a small novel (that was an attempt at humor, please laugh a little here), I hope that you give it the same thoughtful response that you did the others.
Thank you for reading this through to the end.

(this was also posted on Strong4Life's facebook wall this morning)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

It Gets Better?

I try to be optimistic most of the time.  But sometimes, life makes that really difficult.  There was a campaign a few months ago for LGBT youth telling them how life gets better.  And for them, it probably will.  As they get older and their peers mature, the bullying will reduce.  I'm not going to pretend like no one ever mocks adults in the LGBT community or that adults don't ever feel like they are outside looking in; I'm only pointing out that for people like me - it never gets better.

I have good days, yes.  And I am lucky to have a couple friends who accept my differences and don't laugh when they become more prominent.  However, for me, every day is an exercise in pretending.  Pretending to be normal, pretending to fit in with the others, pretending that I don't care that people talk about me behind my back....you get the idea.

You see, I'm fundamentally different than most of the people around me.  I look differently.  I act differently.  I think differently.  And most of the time, I'm OK with that.

And other times, I wallow in my self pity and write blog articles that no one will ever read whining about the state of my life.

HA!  was just checking if you were paying attention.  I am different.  But I'm really in a good place about it.  Good friends help!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Taking a Stand

I have not always been good about applying Fat Acceptance to myself.  It's easy for me to accept others.  Myself, much more difficult.  Then Children's Hospital of Atlanta started their billboard campaign under the name Strong4Life.  The ideas are good, but the execution is horrible.  They use pictures of fat kids and portray them as incredibly unhappy and unhealthy.
Various bloggers in the fat-o-sphere started talking about doing something.  And then Marilyn Wann, author of the book Fat?So! started the STANDards and I submitted my photo.  I don't like my family taking my picture, and I especially don't like full body shots.
I should have realized that this would grow and grow and grow.  I think the part of me that submitted the picture thought only other fatties would see it, and it wouldn't matter.  The part of me that doesn't want these kids in Georgia to be bullied anymore is so so glad that this has just exploded ALL over the place.
That part of me is proud to be part of this fight.  And that's the part of me that doesn't care that there is a full body shot of me floating around the internet.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

It's Getting Better All The Time

Now that I have planted a song in your head....

Morning helps.  Nothing has changed, but I feel better for having slept.  I just need to get through the next few days, and then I can have a nice break on the weekend.

The weekend is my solitude time.  I use Saturday in particular to recover from having to interact with people all week.  Pretending to be normal is incredibly exhausting.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Aspie working

It's been a rough few months for me.  I have had some personal health issues, which add to stress in the workplace, and I've had a few "aspie meltdowns" as a result.  No one likes this, especially me.  Which I think people don't quite get.  It's embarrassing to become that upset in public.  Heck, it's embarrassing at home when no one can see it but your couch.

I'm trying an ADD/ADHD med to see if it helps with some of the sensory overload issues I've been dealing with.  I'm about a week in, and it seems to help.  Now I just need to get the rest under control.

On the fatty front, there is an awesome movement afoot to stand up for the kids of GA.  Big kudos to Marilyn Wann for getting the ball rolling, and to each person who has participated.  You can check it out here.  I love what I am seeing in the community!