Beautiful Lumps of Coal

1 04 2010

“Can we ever give up trying
To be something in another’s eyes?”
~ Plumb

I hope you’ll forgive me for going all introspective again. I’m telling you, it’s the hormones. And the 15 years of therapy, but mostly the hormones. I also need to stop listening to Joshua Radin and Elliot Smith late at night.

Last week we had a woman come into the pharmacy to pick up her phentermine. For those who may not know, phentermine is half of the phen-fen combination–the only part still legal. It’s basically an appetite suppressant. It’s not at all abnormal to have somebody bring in a phentermine script, but what made this woman stand out was her age. She was 65.

Please know that I’m not suggesting at all that 65 is old. Somehow, though, in my head I’ve always assumed that by the time I reach retirement age, I’ll have found some sort of peace with myself. Currently my body and I have a cease-fire of sorts going, but I don’t think I’d call it peace by any stretch of the imagination.

I worry about what we do to ourselves in the name of beauty. This woman was already hypertensive, and rather than discuss things with her primary care physician, she went to the local “medical weight loss” clinic, where they apparently either don’t check medical histories or just don’t care. (I’m not sure which of those options is most horrifying to me.) I’ve seen these clinics give weight-loss prescriptions to women who are at most a size 6–women who are unhappy with the post-pregnancy pouch, or who feel like they just need to lose those last five pounds and then they’ll be truly happy with themselves.

I suppose I’m grateful they’re back to the phentermine. For a time, the clinics were messing with thyroids and insulin levels. Hey, you know what can happen when you mess with a thyroid that isn’t underactive? Think Igor in Young Frankenstein. (“Wow, you look great! Have you been losing weight? I wish I co–OH, SWEET HEAVEN HAVE MERCY, YOUR EYES!!!”)

As usual, I’m rambling. Shocker. I just wish we could find ways to accept ourselves, cellulite, pock marks, baby bellies and all. I wish I could believe it when my husband tells me I’m beautiful. I wish my friends who have stopped using meth could see that they aren’t fat–they’re finally healthy, and their curves are gorgeous. I wish I could wipe from memory the punk-ass kid in high school who told me my butt was big. And honestly? My personal biggest wish is that I could look in the mirror and say, “I’m beautiful” instead of “I’m beautiful for a fat girl.”

Lots of wishing, no good answers. Such is life. I suppose we just keep pushing through. Oh, and spending lots of time with therapists. 😉

Speaking of therapists, I called mine over a week ago to make an appointment and he never returned my call. I’ll never understand why therapists do that to patients with documented abandonment issues. It’s like he’s messing with me. Of course, if I were a therapist, I would totally do that. I’d screen the calls of paranoid patients and call them back 30 seconds later. So I’m thinking it’s probably a good thing I’m not a therapist.

My unrelated thought for the night: My husband has a very unique first name, so I prefer not to use it on my blog. I mean, good luck tracking down Jenny Smith in Utah, but add in my husband’s name, and I know you’ll all be stalking me because I’m just that awesome. I’ve been trying to think of what to call him on my blog that’s not as impersonal as an initial, and I’ve finally decided what it will be: Muffin. From now on, when I refer to Muffin, you’ll know it’s my husband.

This nickname serves several purposes. First and foremost, it amuses me terribly. I also like the fact that the readers who know him will giggle every time they read it. Also? Now I can say I know the Muffin Man. In fact, I’m married to the Muffin Man.

I really, really need to go back to my resolution to write my blogs before 11 pm. You know, before my ADD meds wear off.

*How is the word “butt” not in the WordPress spellcheck dictionary? Is it for the same reason that I can’t use “slut” or “queer” for the Boggle game on my Palm?




4 responses

2 04 2010
Erika Hill

Here’s something ironic: I now weigh 30 pounds more than I weighed in high school, but for the first time I don’t think I’m fat. Maybe it’s because I am doing something about it (exercising, though not as regularly as I used to…it’s been a rough few months), maybe it’s because any month I still hope I’ll get pregnant and I figure, hey, if I’m going to gain a bunch of weight, why lose it?

I’d be lying if I said that I was completely happy with my body, but we also have a cease fire.

I think Muffin’s a good nickname as long as it’s not preceded by Stud. Then you’ll have gone all Seriously So Blessed on me, and I just can’t have that.

2 04 2010

Hey!! Now I know the muffin man!! Love it.
hmm, happiness with ones self? I honestly think that is one of the worst things for women to deal with in life is knowing that they can be beautiful despite their size, or other “imperfections.” I think that is why I loved being preggo. People stopped judging me for that time cause my tummy was beautiful. Now post pregnancy, I am all about baggy clothing again…

2 04 2010

Wonderful post, as usual. Re: self acceptance…I know. And I have no idea how people ever get to the ‘self acceptance’ point. I’m just hoping and praying I can help instill it in my daughters.

7 04 2010

If anyone truly gets over high school, and the damage done there in the name of stupidity, I think they must have done something great. Of course, I am the girl still reeling from my kindergarten teacher telling me that I wasn’t very smart. (ABD and still reeling from that.)

I think you are beautiful, Jenny. Always have.

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