I have been reading @themilitantbaker ‘s “Things No One Tells Fat Girls” and in it, she challenges all fat women to cannonball into the pool. Well I took that challenge head on, because not only is this how I get into the pool most times, but also because I believe in embracing the child within – Be child-like not childish.
Doing this reminded me of my favourite movie when I was younger: Shallow Hal. I thought it was funny – little did I know the impact it was having on my body image unconsciously. It’s about Hal, who is, yes you guessed it shallow. He gets trapped in an elevator with Tony Robbins (weird because now I’m a life coach trained in the same methods) and he gets hypnotised to only see the beauty within. Long story short, he falls in love with a girl called Rosemary who he sees as gorgeous when in reality, she is morbidly obese.
As an adult, I can see there are SO many things wrong with this movie I can’t even get started. I think the idea that disturbs me the most is that an attractive but obese person cannot exist. Rosemary is simply a fat Gwyneth Paltrow. She is still attractive!
There is one scene though that I want to talk about. Rosemary jumps into the pool and creates such a big wave that a child ends up in a tree. Looking back, that’s when I realised I stopped cannonballing… You see, I used to have diving classes and at the end of the lesson, we used to do fun things like cannonballs and suddenly, I didn’t want to go diving anymore. In fact, I didn’t want to go swimming at all.
Unconsciously these messages are being taught to our children. We need to stop making fat women a butt of the joke. It’s not funny, it’s repeating the same jokes fat people have endured all their lives like when they get in a canoe and she weighs down the canoe so much, he is up in the air or how when he looks away for a second and she finishes the milkshake, demonstrating another stereotype that overweight women have no self control. Can we stop perpetuating these ridiculous ideas? It now makes me sad that it was my favourite movie.