Usually I pay little attention to the Jesus statue in churches. I mean did anybody ever really take a picture of him or is this an image from ancient drawings and carvings, or worse – man’s imagination? But yesterday at Mass I found myself gazing at his statue and I had an epiphany.
Quite recently, I have been harassed on more than one occasion by friends, family and even foes on the dangers of being big. Truth be told, I worry about it too. I mean with all the trivial fashion, and more weighty health reasons they give for me to lose weight, who would not worry?
A friend even urged me to do anything possible lest I miss out on marital bliss– scary thought! Seeing as she is a size 8 with aristocratic looks, very single and ferociously hubby-hunting. In her books, a clear case of “e never better for person wey dem pray for come remain hu dem swear for”. For me, it is not about the hot dresses I cannot squeeze into, or my looks, or even this whole peer pressure thing. It is foremost about my health – this is a feeble attempt by me at convincing me.
Initially I started off skipping ropes and doing squats, but I ran of patience after I lost my iPod. Jogging and doing gym time was not particularly interesting either. Plus I really do not care what anyone says until after they have tried jogging with a hippo for a backpack. I know everyone says I need to take it slow, but how slow can I really go before I lose it? I have been doing the ‘tortoise trot‘ for a while now and seriously, the absence of results is frustrating. I get livid when people who do not know the half of what being big is all about make nasty comments just to sound smart, funny and/or important. If you do not have any positive suggestions to make, please park outside, right next to the transformer.
Before I got to meet a certain somebody, I disliked his penchant for writing mean remarks about fat people. The first time I gave him any attention, he had written a scathing article about how the only way a fat girl would get ‘some‘ from him, was if she would ‘pay’ him with ice-cream. Seriously?!! The next time came sooner than I expected, and at that time I was getting ready to settle at Kirikiri because I was sure murder was going to be the case.
This time around, he said some fat people exercise themselves by typing comments on the internet while eating a burger – it was very offensive but a tad amusing, considering I was on a food binge at the time and had the remnants of a chicken burger on my plate and that hit close to home.
I have never understood why people go out of their way to be nasty, even though most of them have that one orobo in their lives they profess to love. What happened to cheering that friend on as she battles with the extra rolls of fat? Obviously, to a few, snide comments and bitching gets the job done. It might work for some, but I like to consider myself an exception to that rule. You see, I have been called all sorts of names in this life, from the bike men who promise to charge me per kg; to mama Emeka who owns the hottest isi-ewu joint in my part of town and assumes being big translates to being ‘deep’ in the pocket too. I have proudly borne these names and even had a few good laughs on some occasions. I mean there is that saying, “if you can’t beat them… “
I was very much lost in thought and didn’t even realize it was time for communion till the man next to me nudged me on his way out. With my gaze still fixed on the statue, it hit me- wave after wave of relief coursed through me as I reveled in my aha moment.
Most of us have read about how much he trekked and how little he ate, but who ever stopped to take in what that did to/for his body? This man Jesus – judging by the pictures of him and his statues – was a looker. As I looked almost unseeingly at that statue of him on the cross, it occurred to me that I could do this, if only I followed in his stead. If he got an enviable muscled torso and strong arms from praying, fasting and trekking, surely that should work for me too.
Now I know how I want that saying to end in my case, “If I can’t beat them, then I should lead them”. My mentor did too, without a gym membership or an iPod. I know I can do this. I just need to get past this fear.
Written by Chidinma