I would like to tell you a story about a girl who likes to travel a lot. That’s me yes I called myself a girl we’re not making a big deal about it okay? Moving on…I’ve also lost about 40 lbs. or so this year. How are the two related? Im about to tell you, you need to get comfortable because this whole piece of writing is about to get pretty uncomfortable for a whole lot of us. This is not a pleasant topic for anyone to talk about. Certainly not a fun one for someone who is still heavy on the scale. So yes, lets have some fun! Now you know an obvious fact about me, here is another one: I’m not a very friendly person if you are traveling with me. I’m not going to strike up a conversation with you if you happen to be seated next to me. I’m not going to share anecdotes about how jumpy the plane is while we eat our meals together. I’m just not that person. I’m not a complete cold-hearted passenger either. If your child is crying for a yogurt and I have one in my tray, I’ll give mine happily. I’ve even shared my iPhone charger with a woman whose phone was dying when our flight was delayed and she needed to let her family know that she was stuck with the rest of us (see how I mention that like its such a great thing when its not even? That’s the kind of person I am while traveling).
However, please do not ask me about my life story or try to tell me yours. I’m not interest. Too tired. Too sleepy. Simply don’t care. No, don’t judge me so fast. There are good reasons for this utter lack of wanting to communicate with fellow humans.
1. I’m traveling with my children and/or husband, and I really don’t need more people to talk to if I have miraculously gotten a few moments to myself.
2. I’m by myself, which means I’ve managed to get away from all of “them” and I want to enjoy the peace and quiet.
Anyway, Back to the actual point.
People always want to talk though. I always have to answer a few questions yes/no/I don’t know/I’m sure you’re right. Follow that up up with a smile and a gracious nod, burry my head in my book and pretend to disappear. It’s works most of the time. Sometimes I get overly enthusiastic talkers and for those you also need the headphones along with your nose really really deep inside that book but then sometimes you just smile and nod along because you realize there is no way. This nice person has no other way to pass the time in this boring airport or the plane ride. And I am sitting in the window seat.
All of that aide, what I never had the patience for is men flirting with me. I never had a lot of those. Every now and again though you get one of those sitting next to you and you just want to throw up from their presence because on a plane there is no escape. I always thought that I had such a strong personality that no one dared to come near me. I have traveled alone a lot so its not because I’m always with my husband or kids.
Past few months I’m seeing more and more men trying to strike up conversations with me at airports and in airplanes. I would mention other places but wherever else I go people mostly know I’m married or I have other people around me so that opportunity rarely ever comes up. I would be okay with that if it was just innocent passing the time kind of thing. I was getting really confused. What has changed? Am I dressing different? Im the same, wearing crappy clothes, no makeup, don’t want to talk to you, please mind your own business, person I’ve always been. So what’s different from a few months a go? I came back from a recent trip and stood in front of the mirror because I was trying to understand this whole thing, which was annoying and extremely frustrating. If I didn’t want light conversation I sure as hell didnt want people flirting with me. Then it hit me. I’m lighter than I was a few months a go. People have always been nice to me, men and women alike, but I think this is the first time so many men are trying to talk to me. So, here’s the downside of losing weight. Those experiments people go around doing in fat suits and whatnot? Well here it is. I am your walking, talking, experiment.
Results: People like thin people.
You want more? All right, lets go. Here it is.
Everywhere I go people seem more interested in me. I have never had the feeling that I’m being ignored or that I’m not valued. Yes, if I sound a little over confident, I definitely am. However, I have noticed, after losing the weight the attention and value comes before people strike up a conversation and get to know me. It makes me wonder what’s up because Im not used to it. I wonder, “I haven’t told you about how cool I am yet why are you already liking me so much?’ Then I remember ohhhh I’m thin now, got it…okay now I don’t like YOU…bye.”
The world changes when you change, losing weight can be a really great feeling when Im by myself and realizing how great it is for me and my family or when you’re getting compliments. Even when Im realizing how much more I can do for the family and myself. Its true that once you start to work at it the flow makes it easier and its even kind of fun. Yeah that was hard for me to type. Losing weight CAN be FUN. This is coming from someone who has battled on the wrong side of the scale for decades. But when I see that reaction, from acquaintances and strangers alike, it makes me feel blagh. What’s even worse in this entire situation that I’m not some extremely beautiful person where you would think that the butterfly in me has come out. Most of the time I’m in my pjs with no makeup trying to be polite to barely keep it together with my kids in public. Maybe jeans, or at most a casual dress, anything better is probably some sort of party and your lucky day. Im a pretty self-obsessed person so if I were super beautiful I would be the first to tell you. Just goes to show you how much weight matters to our world. Not like we didnt know it already but experiencing it first hand gives you weird tingles all over and not the good kind.
This hurts even more because my weight problems came mostly from my illness and they are solved because I stopped my medication that was making me gain weight. No one cared to hear that. No one sympathizes with that situation. They are just happy for me. Scratch that. They are happy that they don’t have to look at a fat body. When I tell them yeah I don’t take the medicine because it’s not available in the country I live in, I’m currently looking for a substitute that works. Im in a lot of pain, in the mean time it is really helping me lose the weight because all the work out and eating healthy sticks. All I get in response is, “hey good for you”. I also said “I’M IN A LOT OF PAIN” but yeah focus on the weight loss part alone. That’s nice, thanks.
I know how it feels to be fat. I also remember when I was young and thin. Then I got married and life, kids, everything else weighed in and I weighed even heavier. Everyone had an opinion about it. Everyone judged me and told me to just lose the weight. “What are you doing about the weight?” They would say. Like they care more about my life and my children than I do. Like I could JUST lose the weight. As if I don’t worry about my blood pressure and how the weight impacts the back pain and my other issues. As though I’m not finding ways to be healthy. You see my body once a week I see it 24/7, calm your selves with the concerns. I love myself more. I assure you. I wont put everyone in that category but lets bee real, lets analyze our own selves; isn’t that the truth? Be honest. It’s been pretty obvious from the latest reactions since I’ve started losing the weight. I definitely appreciate the support. The support I get from a lot of the people that care about me, they helps me to go on and keep working harder.
Okay so mister stranger, creeper man, you want to talk to me? Lets talk. You got a wife at home? Kids? Sister? Mother? Husband? Anybody you respect? Well I got a husband and two kids. I’m trying to potty train the little one these days and the house is just a mess. Nothing stays clean ever, everything smells, combine that with the smell of a day old nuked French toast and…what? Conversation is over already? All right I guess its back to playing with my phone, too bad for me (sad face emoji).