I’ve had a running dialogue with my chubby roll most of my life. It has been a long-time, but mostly unwanted companion. My negative opinion of it started with the help of others. The first boy who ever saw me in my underwear said…“uhhh, you look alright… I guess”—causing me to run downstairs, grab a hand mirror and for the first time find the flaws in my body. The cheerleading coach who said, “You can never be on top of the pyramid because you’re too big”—making me feel like a tank in a tutu. And finally, my own voice, being far crueler than any other, saying things aimed to shame and diminish, like “porky,” “tubby,” and (I cringe to type it) “the chubster.”
One day not so long ago, after years of self-recrimination about my body, an extreme thought surfaced. What if I really showed up in the World and chubby roll or not, found out people still loved me; that I was amazing and could do whatever I wanted? Could years of negative judgment be overcome? The voice that criticized every time I passed a perfect girl on the cover of a magazine stilled. Was it possible to live life fully, even with the roll of fat that sits so smugly above my jeans? Today, I plan to have a different type of conversation with my muffin top. If it is going to hang around, I might as well make peace with it.