When I’m not thinking about death, I’m thinking about my fat thighs. My brain bounces between the two subjects like a ping-pong ball. I hate these preoccupations but I feel helpless against the tyranny of my depression. Obviously, I am looking for a new medication.
Fat thighs have always been one of my deepest, most elemental dreads. Fat thighs are loaded with significance for me, all negative. They represent weakness of the worst sort, a moral and aesthetic crime. It means being Female, in the most self-loathing and sexist definition of the word. God knows how this started, but my father hated fat and he hated women, so we might not need Einstein to figure it out. Years ago, I would cringe at the line from Master Song by Leonard Cohen:
and your thighs are a ruin, you want too much
let’s say you came back some time too soon
Leonard Cohen may have been talking about Mary Magdalene but I still take it personally.
How many women hate their thighs? I know the number is vast and most of you didn’t know my father. If you hate your thighs, can you recall the genesis of the hatred?
When I sit down, I see my thighs spread outward like a sea of blubber. I whine and complain and apologize to my husband for my fat thighs. He has demonstrated again and again his reverence for my thighs, but I feel they are a blight verging on deformity.
Out in the Fact-based Community, my thighs are probably slimmer than average but that has no bearing on my problem. Fat Thighs are a state of mind, a state of being, a Feminist Issue, and a way to externalize anxiety and shame.
Plus, I can’t go out wearing shorts, even though it’s been a trillion degrees all summer and my house has become an Indian sweat lodge.
Thoughts, advice, insults, anyone?