I am a typical south Indian girl. I live in Chennai. People loved me when I was a child.
I was chubby and plump.
I felt proud of myself because everyone always treated me like a doll. I thought I was the best person in the world. But things changed after I grew up.
I am fat now. I feel my face is bulging and my thighs are expanding every day.
People don’t want me to wear t-shirts, jeans, short sleeved tops and sleeveless clothes.
I wonder what I should wear.
One day when I was in the 10th grade, my best friend asked me why I was so fat. She then asked me where I got my dresses from. She then said that I must have surely got all my clothes from the women’s section.
The entire class started laughing. That was the first time I was criticized. I almost broke down when she said that but I controlled myself because I did not want to cry in front of them.
Even today people who know me well will always give me advice and tips to reduce weight. Damn it, man.
I don’t like being fat either. Why does no one understand that?
I was so happy when I got selected in one of the top IT companies. I told all my relatives about it. But instead of appreciating me they asked me to reduce my weight at least before I started working. They said all the IT people would respect me if lost weight. My God! I had felt so good about myself till then. I had completed my B.Tech with 92.7% but nobody was impressed by that.
I realized that the first thing they all thought of when they saw me was – my weight.
I did not want to waste my dad’s money to lose weight. So I joined a gym after I started working. I lost 4 kg in the first month because I cut down on sugar, rice and cool drinks completely.
I am not a foodie. Rice just happens to be my staple food.
I hate eating rotis but I started eating rotis to reduce weight. I felt that I was poisoning my system by eating rotis. But I decided to stick to my diet regimen.
After a few days, I became restless. I was unable to concentrate on my work.
I was not able to spend time with my family. I became so frustrated that I consulted a doctor. The doctor said that I was under pressure because of my diet.
He said that I was genetically fat. I was not fat because of my food habits. He then asked me to follow the food pattern that I was most comfortable with.
After a few weeks, I became very busy with my work. I now had no time to go to the gym. I started looking out for tablets to reduce my weight. I even went to a reimaging centre. But nothing worked out. My mom too felt bad because I was fat.
Whenever I wore something new, the first thing my fellow mates would tell me was, “You would have looked great in that dress had you been slim.”
Two days before my birthday, I bought a skirt with a kurta. My mom said, “This will not suit you beta. Go and get it exchanged.” My dad said, “You are not a kid anymore. Don’t waste your money.” My sister said, “You have big hands and arms. Get it exchanged for something else.” My friend asked me not to wear it because I had a big back. Another friend told me that I had big thighs. She suggested that I get the dress exchanged for a salwar kameez. I kept rewinding all the things that all these people told me.
I wanted to end my life. I would cry all through the night because I was ashamed of my body. I wondered why God had created me like this and then ditched me.
But I wanted to do something good for the world before leaving it. I wanted to do something that made me feel better about myself. So I went to an orphanage. I met an angel there and gave her the money that I had brought along with me. The orphanage was inside a small park. I went out to the park and sat on a bench in the corner of the park.
A lady wearing a cotton saree came towards me. She looked like my grandma. I automatically started smiling at her when she came to me. She sat down quietly next to me.
I did not wait for her to ask me anything. I just felt like sharing my problems with her. She listened to me and then said, “Dear, there are many handicapped people in this orphanage here. There are people who are eagerly waiting to wear someone’s used dresses. They don’t know what they will eat in the morning today or in the afternoon or at night.”
“They just exist on hope. Yet they thank God for what they have. Why are you so confused? God has given you so many things. We don’t have as many things as you have. So use what you have in the right manner.”
I realized how meaningful life could be when I heard her words.
Her words will linger in my heart forever. I now knew that I was bold and beautiful in my own way. I was not interested in impressing men. I started wearing dresses that made me happy. Why should I waste my life trying to make others happy? I finally realized that being fat was not a sin.