Well, FUCK that to hell.
Today, when I picked Roslyn up from school, her head was hanging a little low and she walked to my car slightly hunched over, a concerned look across her face. I asked her what was wrong and she told me. A boy at school today had called her fat. I asked her if she thought maybe he was talking to someone else and no, he looked at her in the eye as she was walking by and told her that she was fat.
And a seed of insecurity was planted in that moment.
Because when you call my daughter fat...
You tell her that she is less than.
You tell her that she is unworthy.
You tell her that she is not beautiful, or healthy.
You tell her that she should not be happy.
You tell her that the worst thing that someone can be, is fat.
You make her not want to dance because she has to wear a leotard that day.
You make her not care about her dreams, and instead care about you.
You also tell her a lie.
And you tell her who you are, someone who is bearing an ugliness inside of them.
I am fat. My whole life I have struggled with hating myself. I still struggle with that hate on a constant basis. Apologizing for who I am, the space I take and for those who may have to even look at me. There are still days where I don't want to leave my house because of how I have been made to feel about how I look. I've canceled or failed to make plans because of how I look.
I remember the playground and the taunts that came with being overweight... the cries of "Miss Piggy" to the oh so clever "You're fat!". By the time I was 12 I was in a constant cycle of starving myself to making myself throw up anything that I would eat and taking caffeine pills to combat the fatigue I felt from the pure nightmare-ish hell I was enduring as a child.
When I was pregnant with Roslyn and found out that she was a girl, one of the first thoughts I had was a prayer that she didn't genetically take after my side of the family, but Drew's when it came to her weight. When I should have been dreaming of all things pink and mama-daughter moments, I was praying that she didn't get my legs. Because I didn't want her to spend her whole life hating who she was and what she looked like. I wanted more for her than what I dealt with growing up.
I am angry.
I am angry that that boy lives in a world where he has learned that the quickest and surest way to hurt a girl is to tell her that she is fat.
I am angry that she believes him and spent 15 minutes crying in my arms, not wanting to go to dance and wanting to quit all together rather than wear a leotard today.
I am angry that she thinks she needs to lose weight at 10 fucking years old.
I am angry that with two words that boy planted an insecurity and self loathing in her that can be next to impossible to remove.
I've spent ten years as her mother teaching her how to be a good person. To be kind, to be caring, to be respectful, to be helpful, to be courageous and to be loving. Teaching her that body shaming of any kind is unacceptable. Teaching her and telling her repeatedly that she is a strong, amazing, healthy, wonderful, smart, talented and loving girl... a good daughter, friend and person- and with two words, a boy can dim her light and make her believe that what I've told her she is is not true.
We have to STOP this nonsense and shaming.
We have to stop tearing each other down and focus on building each other up. Tell someone that they're beautiful, that you love their shirt or their hair or their shoes, tell them that you admire their intelligence or their humor or their talent. Say ten positive things out loud for every one negative thought you have. Because just as you have the power to ruin a day, you also have the power with your words to make a day.
Please... our daughters lives and happiness depends on it.