Friday, March 14, 2008

2 More Words....

I thought about titling this post "Disgusting and Pathetic", but I thought that would be using sensationalism and I didn't want to participate in giving these words more energy than they deserve. So there they are....two words. Words that people just throw around when talking about how they feel about themselves, or others, that have eating habits that cause overweightness, or some other habit that contributes to bad health.

Here's something I wrote almost one year ago about the word "disgusting";

Kirstie Alley was on the Oprah show. It was the first time she had been a guest since losing, supposedly, about 75 lbs.. ( I think it was more 90, because I think she lied about only weighing 213 originally. That woman was at least 245 if she was a pound! And it looks as if she has gained a portion of that back)Oprah showed her a "before" picture of herself and asked her how she felt when she saw pictures like that. Her response was, "OH MY GOD, I WAS SOOOO DISGUSTING!!" And she went on, and on, and on, and on about how disgusting she had been. I was appalled at her response.

Even though I had already lost my weight, I could still indentify with people that hadn't yet. All I could think of was all of the people in the audience (in person and viewers) that were overweight hearing her go on an on about how disgusting she thought she was. Did that make them disgusting? That was what I felt she was implying. She wouldn't shut her mouth about it, even Oprah started to get uncomfortable. Since then I have ceased to be a fan of hers (Ms. Alley).

When talking about that show the next day at work, I was explaining how mortified I was at her response and said, "Doesn't she know that there are people still out here fighting the fight?"And that included me.I never once felt that way about myself....that I was disgusting. Yes I was fat, and I wasn't as attractive as I could be, but that was such a small part of who I was. My "fatness" was a reflection of my emotional struggles with food, not a reflection of my heart and soul, my intelligence or talents. When I see people overweight, I never think that they are disgusting, they're just eating too much of the wrong foods and probably not exercising and they haven't come to the point of wanting to something about it yet. That's it.

And although I've changed some of the words I now use, and think about, like "struggle", "issue"...I have even changed my opinion of this "fight" I used to think I was fighting, (maybe I was at the time) I feel about the word "disgusting" is the same.

Who decides what is disgusting or pathetic? We do. I choose to not think of myself in those ways, or think of others in that way.


Anonymous said...

You're right, Tracy. Words can be powerful and that's not a way to talk about another person.

Tracy Reifkind said...


Or yourself, which is another point!

Mark Reifkind said...

great post,again, honey. really good and important for people to realize that their judgements about how other people, or they themselves look, are self imposed, when it really comes down to it.
when you were heavy it really made me look at how much I loved 'you', not just your body or the way you looked. and that realization made it much easier to be even more compassionate to others in the same boat.and this applies to many other things as well as weight: age, infirmity or other issues that are easy to place judgement upon.

Anonymous said...

Yes, that's another excellent point that we can be our own worst enemy with our internal dialogue.