Sometimes the most toxic habits are the hardest to break…

On Sunday 1.31.21, I was out for a run and it was a beautiful day. I was not particularly excited for the run, as I had stayed up til almost 3am gaming on Ark: Survival Evolved and was dragging but the beauty of the day got me going. I was enjoying my run and thinking it was going to turn out to be really nice, when a car passed me…and they screamed something.

In the split seconds between them screaming and my brain registering what they said, all sorts of toxic, negative thoughts came flooding into my brain. “You’re a fat ass, you shouldn’t be running, you’re too old to run, you aren’t a real runner, etc” along with shame, heartbreak and feelings of worthlessness. When in actuality the person yelled “GOOD JOB” and stuck their arm out the window and gave me a thumbs up and honked their horn.

I literally broke down into tears on the sidewalk. All the years of work being strong, independent, fierce and ‘in your face – fuck you I’m a runner’ was out the window in a split second and I was reduced to a shamed, hiding fat girl who felt like I was doing something wrong.

I got so angry at myself for letting shit like that creep in. I calmed down and ran a for a few minutes then I was like “NO! This is not going to win. So I pulled off my phone and recorded what I was feeling in that situation. (And if I can post the video here on my blog I will, otherwise it will be up on Facebook).

As soon as I hit end on my recording, I felt a weight lifted. I had gotten it out and I knew it wouldn’t weigh me down the rest of my run. It was out of my head. Then, when I finished my run, I sat down on my steps and made a much more calm post for tiktok. Because I didn’t think I wanted me all weepy and crying out on the interwebz forever!

But…here I am, blogging about it.

I told Greg about it after the fact and that I was upset because I can defend being a female sword fighter, an athena athlete, whatever men say I can’t be til the cows come home but in that instant I was reduced to being ‘the fat girl’ and it felt like I would never get past that. What he said to me made me realize that I needed to share this and that I will constantly fight this battle til the day I die, but that’s ok.

“Baby, you have been fat longer than you have been anything else in your entire life, other than being female. Of course you are going to have baggage around that, and you probably always will. You are a role model to so many people, you feel like you can’t have these break down moments, but, we ALL do, just most of us aren’t willing to put it out there like you do.”

I have lived my ENTIRE LIFE being a fat girl. I was a fat baby, I was a fat toddler, I was a fat teenager, a fat 20 something and now, a fat old lady! Sure at 42 I got less fat, but I am, and forever will be a fat girl. But, that is only one thing that describes me. I am also so many other things, but I have spent the longest time being female and being fat, and those two things will always be there. It doesn’t just one day go away, whether I weigh 450 pounds, or 240 pounds or 175 pounds. The fat girl will always be a part of me and I can’t love myself, without loving that part of me too.

I was surprised with just how quick my brain went to the negative because I have always fought so hard against ‘the norm’ in the past, especially being a female fighter. When anyone: male, female, old, young, whatever would say I was not a real sword fighter, the first thing I do is challenge them, tell them to step into the ring with me and try to take that away from me. Because I can guarantee they will be the one going down before me.

But when I hear someone attacking me for being fat – wow is that hard to counter in an instant – and I was having a hard time wrapping my head around it. But then I realized I have literally been conditioned to take it, to accept it, to not say anything back, to feel bad, to give in to their ridicule because that’s what society teaches us to do when we’re fat. “We don’t get to count, because we don’t have enough self control to put the donut down” basically.

Well fuck that bull shit. And fuck my brain for not standing up for me. It’s crazy how much toxicity we harbor in our own minds, even when we feel like we’ve gotten past those levels of craptastic thought patterns years ago.

Nope. Still in there, just hiding away, waiting for some innocent soul trying to give me a compliment and I turn it into a javelin of poison headed straight for my fat girl heart.

Sometimes excavating those buried toxic thought patterns is worth the effort because you can be left more aware. And you can find ways to deal with them, and hopefully move past them.

Will it happen again? Probably.

Will I be more prepared? Hopefully.

One day at a time. One step at a time. One run at a time.

-The Badass Valkyrie

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