What Am I Worth?: prose

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What Am I Worth?: prose

By RAVINA PATEL
Staff Writer

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“Why does the judgment begin so early? Why does the judgment start at all?” (Wes Bausmith/The Los Angeles Times/TNS)
I am more than numbers on a scale.

I am tired of being measured by the size of my waistline. The presence or lack of a thigh gap does not define me as a person. I do not want to fit anyone else’s expectations of beauty. I want to be recognized as a person, but instead I feel like a barcode, constantly scanned by other people who try to determine my worth. I am tired of people who would rather hear about whether I have lost or gained weight than the activities and ideas I am passionate about. What is being taught to children when it is acceptable for a seven-year-old to mention how much weight I have gained, simply because I weigh more than her idea of perfection? Why does the judgment begin so early? Why does the judgment start at all? I consider so many things private, including how much I weigh. My body is not open for others to carelessly discuss, judge, or comment on.

Because of the judgment, I used to be insecure, but I am now comfortable enough in my body to accept my weight. Why is such self-acceptance not encouraged? What would be the point in craving another’s approval if I were not even content with myself? I do not need to look a certain way to be accepted, and I do not have to act a certain way to be considered normal. I do not need to lose weight. Instead, other people need to abandon their stereotypes of what is socially acceptable because so many things are more important than weight.

I am more than numbers on a scale.

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