I cried in front of the entire golf team on the first day of practice.
It was my senior year, and my second season playing golf for the Mountain View Toros.
Over the summer our coach had asked us to hit the gym. He came up with a weight training program that was supposed to improve our golf swings… Because I’m a (recovering) perfectionistic people pleaser, I followed the prescribed routine religiously. I did everything just right. Unfortunately, it did not make me a better golfer.
I wasn’t the worst on the team, but I sure as heck wasn’t the best. We had two star players, and everyone else. After assessing our swings, our coach was clearly disappointed and proceeded to get after us for not going to the gym.
It was hard to not take it personal, because I had done exactly what he told me to do. He erroneously assumed that I had wasted away my summer, based on the fact that I was still a poor swinger. And so I started to cry.
I remember being so embarrassed, and nervous, as I stammered through my truth: I was a bad golfer, but I was an obedient one. My commitment to my practice, my team, and the coach was something deserving of recognition. He agreed, and then he apologized.
It was a memorable moment of advocating for myself that I will never forget. I’ve had other opportunities where I had to “stand my sacred ground” and each time I cried. I can’t help it!
As an INFJ, enneagram type 4, I have big feelings when it comes to advocacy. It’s why I get so pulpit poundy and a little cussy when I start talking about weight stigma. Although I’ve never had to personally advocate for myself at the doctor’s office, because my thin privilege allows me access to better health care. But it’s not fair.
In talking with family, friends, clients, and BPA members, I have heard of so many tear-filled stories where people in larger bodies are lectured for eating too much or moving too little when in reality they eat/move perfectly. When you’ve done everything “right” and yet you’re made to believe your body is still “wrong” it is NOT your fault.
My hope is that one day you can stand up for yourself, but in the meantime I will continue advocating for you (crying included).
PS – If you’re feeling brave but need some extra support before your next doctor appointment, a colleague of mine created a fantastic resource: Weight Decline Card. I also recognize that sometimes requesting you not be weighed is more uncomfortable than being weighed, especially if you’ve been shamed previously and a confrontation feels unsafe. Please send me an email if you would like someone to advocate from afar and I will reach out to your care provider on your behalf.