Being Too Skinny – A Personal Essay

To have healthy body, fair skin, sharp features and cuteness- key elements towards which boys used to open their responses for girls, when I was in 9th grade in late 80s. “Dating” wasn’t openly allowed and common at

that time in Indian culture but the idea was there of liking some one and sneaking around secretly. None of the above elements were in my account though- combination of very thin body, average look, and wheatish skin- that was ME. I had few ideas to create new skin and little bit beautiful face with make up but I was totally empty when had to deal with my skinniness – eighty pound, butt less, skinny and full of visible bones containing body. Many times my closest friend Neel had expressed her feeling saying “Dolly, You got to put some extra kgs fat on your bones or else you will have to dig out for stick figure husband”, which insisted me to realize the reality of being extremely skinny. I used to be nervous sometime thinking about my tiny body but being very studios and sincere student- studies, future goals had caught me tightly enough so my thiness didn’t bother me much at that time though all of my girl friends had boyfriends secretly which made me feel bit unsuccessful for not catching any boy’s eye on me.

Some three years ran over and final year of school came up. l. One day when I reached at school Neel-my best friend jumped towards me with mixed feeling of anger, surprising and happiness “Dolly, what have I heard about you I didn’t expect this from you, I ‘m your closest friend and you even didn’t care to tell me about all these, I’m so mad at you”. I some how felt scared as I had little idea about what might be in her mind but I ask her with act of knowing nothing about the situation “ Neel, What happened, what have you heard about me?, just calm down and let’s talk”- Then I settled down the issue with her anyways. The secret was hidden in my chest successfully since last two years disclosed suddenly that day in school some other scattered comments spilled on me that day “Dolly, What is going on? Is it really true? “, “Dolly, wow you have made a history”. Yes, world came to know the biggest secret of my life that I had an affair with most eligible, desirable and hot favorite boy in our batch- Annie, who is currently known as my dear husband. Many students including me had one question – Why he chose me? , the skinniest girl in the school though he was able to get any damn beautiful girl around him?
My fatless body became a topic and always teased , whenever family and friends got an opportunity. My dearest uncle- Jaimy said to me once “It seemed that hollow matchstick was flying in the air, when you were dancing”. We all were attending my cousin’s pre- wedding dance party and uncle Jaimy made a big confusion – Was his comment on my dancing skills or my skinny body? People are so crucial some time that they make comment which doesn’t have straight meaning. I spent enough time in my life to scrutinize people’s attitude towards me of being so bony when I was in India during my 20’s.

I was landed recently from India, totally unaware of body structures of white and black people It was first day at work in USA at near by convenient store, surrounded by black people’s residents. My vision was so surprised by seeing each customer coming and leaving that store, every one was so called “healthy”-guys were showing off puffed muscles by tattooing them and each female looked like a factory of lump sum fat. I wondered “what must be the difference between my size and their, I was wearing one size so I guess they must be belong to 16-18 or 20? ,do they need to customize the size? as I had never seen such kind of giant clothes in my home country. That day went by and I got chance to develop some happiness of being skinny. My skinny body was worth of many great comments that day like “ Hey pretty girl, you are so lucky to have this kind of body , you don’t have to check calories count on back of every food wrapper” , “ hey beautiful, can we switch our bodies as I ‘m carrying huge one and have been dreaming about skinny one like yours?

God, I was so happy that night which made me to ask that secretive question to my husband Annie- Why he chose me? , He laughed at me, hugged me real tight and said “ Dolly, I love you so much all it matters so go to sleep and I will reveal that secret some other time”. That was the day when I felt happiness of being slim because I was liked and loved the way I was, none compromised made. But some how I middle of that night I felt “ there would me nice If I can put up little more weight and make myself more beautiful though I don’t want to be a giant or huge one.” I had new goal of my life -to make more fat tissues for myself.

I started eating cheese and butter with each bite of my day, gained few pounds on my bones which helped me to feel beautiful without any make up but specially India people around me never stopped bothering me about my skinniness .I was introduced to one of our community member through my friend Sheetal recently “ Hey , this is Dolly-one of my good friend, I was talking about”. That lady carrying 150 pound on her bones looked at me and said “Hey Dolly, you are lot skinnier than Sheetal desctibed you earlier, do me a favor –can you take few pounds from me?” I was shocked after getting this kind of comment at first introduction. I was confused about her concern, was she complaining about her being so fat or about me being so flat by idea of giving up some pounds to me. I was little bit angry as she pointed out my characteristic at first sight. Anyways I smiled at her and replied humorously that “I do get that offer many times”. I could take pride of being the way I was when I was surrounded by American people but it sucked when I had to face my own community.

Many years went by I had always got comments, complements, humors and advices. I was passing through my mid thirties. One incident made me to think about my lanky characteristic. I was in my English class; teacher had asked us to write an essay on “impact of any personal characteristic on our life”. I decided “my thinness” without any further thinking. When we classmates and teacher discussed our thoughts and topic of the essay teacher made a comment about my topic “You are so lucky to be like this thin as you will get reward in your 40s”. It wasn’t a huge complement but yes, I never thought what it would be in my 40s before. She certainly opened new thoughts for me of being skinny. Well, because of essay I had to dig out my past experience and outcomes of being svelte. The same night I was discussing about my English class assignment with my husband and he laughed at me and said “ you have been always so concern about your body, now leave it alone and enjoy your life” I picked up his mood and asked him to go out for dinner as it was our 9th wedding anniversary. “Hey honey, today is the day you can tell me your little secret, it’s a perfect time, please tell me what made you to marry me?” we both were enjoying our romantic dinner at my favorite restaurant ‘P.F. Chang’s’, I hold his hand and gave him soft look . He replied “ Dolly, you have always thought that your bones don’t have enough fat but when we were in school many boys were mad for you as you were most sophisticated, reliable, loyal and sincere girl but no one ever dare to come to you because of your straightforwardness. One more thing Dolly, if you remember I was also a thin boy so I always dreamed about thin girl like you. Finally I decided to take that risk and asked for your companionship for life time”. I cried and thank god of “being thin”.