My body, a public scrutiny, a box of unwanted comments and an epitome of how one should not be. My body, an icebreaker to uninvited conversations on a pubic vehicle where I want to shrink myself into minuscule being but cannot while the bus driver does not move until the number of passengers doubles the number of seats.
In one of those rides two years ago, a woman sitting next to me said that I should not wear a skirt because fat thighs are a disgrace. She said it loud enough for everyone on the bus to hear it. The comment was followed by a loud uproar of laughter. I joined everyone too but in that crowded vehicle, I was searching for air to breathe in because suddenly I felt the lack of it. I wanted to disappear from this world at that moment. Was I not strong enough to defy her? Maybe I was but I did not because I believed her. I felt I was wrong to wear a skirt. Maybe fat girls should not wear skirts in a public vehicle for my thighs maybe disgraceful as a woman. I never wore a skirt on a bus since that day.
At age 13, someone told me they do not like chubby girls. So I skipping dinner for a year maybe. It was around that time I started to believe I was ugly because I was fat. My friends were thin and pretty, and I, a misfit. That was what I felt.
At age 15, I liked a boy but maybe I was not allowed to. I was pointed and laughed at. My self-confidence dropped to zero. Since then, I befriended books and my own company rather than people. I lost my voice and my identity while trying to find who I was. To be honest, I did not even dare to look for it. My identity was somehow always connected with my body. I could not detach it with who I really was. I felt inferior and small inside because I was physically big outside.
At age 17, a relative asked me if I was the fattest person in school. I did not know the relative and that was the first question she chose to ask me. When I replied with a no, the second question was, “So are you the second fattest?”
Since a very young age, people associated my body with my identity and it was natural for me to do so too. I started becoming self-conscious about my weight and I tried many ways to reduce it but when I failed, I chose the best option I could find, to isolate myself for a long time.
As an adulting 23-year-old, I have realized that my body is a part of me, and my identity has nothing to do with how I look. It is my beliefs, the way I think, act and many more intangible things with no association with my physical self. In this material age, it is very easy to believe you are what you look like and the people around you will not make it easy for you either. It takes time to find the real you but you will. I did.
My body, maybe a public scrutiny, a box of unwanted comments and an epitome of how one should not be for you, but my body is mine and it does not, in any way define the real me or my identity.