I came across this essay in the 2019 issue of The Salal Review http://www.salalreview.com/volume-19.htm. The Salal Review is the literary and arts journal of Lower Columbia Community College in Longview, WA. The essay spoke to me and I feel it might speak to others as well.
Hello, my name is Fat, and I’m rachel.
I feel the need to explain my rachelness, lest you judge too quickly. I’ve been rachel since I was 7 years old. I was rachel when I played sports, I was rachel when I traveled the world, and I am still rachel to this day.
You would not believe the things I have put my body through in order to lose all of my rachel. Because, you see, with all of this rachel I have a hard time making friends, attracting a mate, or even surviving the mocking disdain of rachel in general.
I’ve exercised, dieted, and starved. I’ve worked hard and tried harder. People assume that I am rachel because of laziness. But did you know that I’ve summited three mountains in spite of my rachel? In my efforts, I have even turned to an exclusively organic, healthy diet. I have accomplished a lifestyle change that many people without an ounce of rachel dream of.
I love to dance, sing, swim, travel, read, and be beautiful, despite my rachel.
I am intelligent, funny, and kindhearted, despite my rachel.
I am worth loving, despite my rachel.
Every day I struggle against the belief that my being rachel makes me worthless.
I’m sorry? You look glazed over…were you even listening?
Okay, um…I’ll try again.
Hello, my name is Rachel, and I’m fat.
By Rachel Chanthavisay
Reprinted by express permission of the author.