I saw something fascinating last night.
The Biggest loser had a specialist in brain science from Johns Hopkins on last night and he showed some brainscan info that was interesting.
The brain activity of obese people when confronted with food vs the same meal offered to a lean person.
The obese person craves a burger more, by direct image of the brain their pleasure center lights up about three times as much as the thin person…
But…when they actually eat the burger they get less/weaker dopamine activation than the lean subject, again, proof is in the brainscan. Per this doc, that’s one of the reasons they eat more stuff, to bring the dopamine response up.
This was always given as anecdotal evidence but now there is visual evidence to prove it.
I have a lot of problems with the Biggest Loser sometimes, but I think the show did a real service last night.
Ok. Had a disability and then got extremely heavyset. Biggest Loser level heavyset.
There’s so many overtly hostile things strangers can say about me or other fat folk…
But the single dumbest one is:
Hey! You’re FAT!”
Gosh, thanks for telling me. Honestly I’m forgetting so much these days…
How could that have slipped my mind?
How could I have forgotten that I have to get my clothes online?
How could I have forgotten that airlines want to me to pay twice?
How could I have forgotten that I have to look at this face and body in the mirror every day and accept that this is what I’ve got for now?
How could I have forgotten that total strangers want to scrutinize each gram of food that leaves my plate at a restaurant?
How could I have forgotten that strangers think it’s fine to humiliate and embarrass me and make comments about my life and get all up in my business in a way they would *never permit* if done to them.
How can I have forgotten that?
I thank you, Stranger, for pointing out two things:
One, the blatantly obvious…
and two, that sneeringly pointing out the obvious comes in your size.
So here I am at my half century mark. Fiftieth birthday.
Firstly. I wasn’t supposed to be here at all, because I nearly didn’t make it. Three different times.
Once, when I was born with what would later be called cerebral palsy. Premature, and dropped to two pounds eleven ounces before I began thriving.
Twice because my life choices exposed me to some inherently lethal risk (which, thankfully I avoided.)
And thrice: Hodgkin’s lymphoma which I survived.
So, it’s very cool to have gotten here.
Fifty Fifty as a phrase means a lot of things.. Split. Half and Half
That may mirror the country’s divide, my ambivalence about a few factors and people in my life…or the time before and after my marriage, a real dividing line in my capabilities and emotional stability.
But I don’t think so.
I’m still trying to talk to friends and associates who are struggling. To offer advice. And also stories. I figure it’s a positive I can still put out there.
And rediscovering some cool things here at this point.
Peace and quiet.
Closer communication with friends and family.
A couple of communities of people that seem to be ok with me as I am, not as who-they-wish-I-would-have-been.
Some annoying physical/emotional stuff that I’m working with (new, not old) is made easier to handle because I have this space to live in, this hidden away place
And singing again… That’s been unbelievably good.
It’s not much by the rest of the world’s standards.
But I judge my value differently than the rest of the world might.
In discussion about disability, the issue of inherent value just by being here comes up again and again. And it’s put into a little sharper forcus when you turn fifty.
Like one of my favorite Star Trek captains once said, there’s more of your life behind you than in front of you at this point.
So, I guess I say enjoy what’s good, take stock of it. Notice it. The decade of my fifties is going to be about noticing the good stuff in each conversation, in each day.
So, I partied last weekend, exercised my right to vote today (too new to the precinct to have gotten a mail in ballot so I rolled next door [literally] to my polling place and voted.
Peeps, ain’t it a great feeling to cast a ballot? Right, left, independent we get to do that in this country…USA USA)
And the weather today? Along with the single slice of key lime pie that I just ate… Indian summer awesome.
Well, on Up with Chris Hayes on Sunday, Peter Singer, the man with the ok-to-euthanize disabled-infants belief system did manage to begin to sneak the crazy into one question while the panel was debating…. he actually said, “Well a four month old baby isn’t really a person…” Everyone else on the panel, right or left, kinda stopped talking and blinked in astonishment. Except for Chris Hayes himself…That young fella drinks *too much coffee!* He just kept right on talking.
for any newer readers to this blog, my bona fides on this is that I’m a woman with cerebral palsy myself.
I had to take a day to respond to this. You’re still not getting all of it.
My feelings for what should happen to this judge are NSFW and not safe for the entire internet.
And it’s not just the beating, which frankly I cannot watch. It’s a trigger.
Good God! The slant of the statement by the judges attorney…
“Well, the reason she released it NOW is,” detailing her anger about her father threatening to cut off support or threatening to take the keys to her Mercedes….
I don’t give a shit *why* she released it. *Why* is less than nothing. He admits this was punishment he believed was his perogative as her father.
While I always fight for us, people with disabilities, to be represented as people first and not as fragile little creatures to be taken care of…
There is a baseline of obligation that you have to a physically vulnerable child. (meaning, all children.)
All children are weaker than adults.
Vulnerable to them.
And as children and adults with disabilities know…we (as a group) seem to have an extra sign on our backs that lights up when predators are near.
E ** A ** S ** Y P ** R ** E *Y
This creature Adams didn’t need a reason to hit his daughter. He could, and so he did. That’s it.
My father did spank me once when I was three, for smushing french fries under the car seat. Spanking was accepted at the time, but the way he did it (grabbing me by my ankles, holding me by my feet, spanking me and sitting me back down.) caused my Mom to let him have it. She made it clear that this was a no corporal punishment household. (I did get paddled at school three years later after a day when I had been a beastly little brat. ) I didn’t consider either incident relating to me as abuse, per se.
So, fast forward to the near-miss, that this Adams’ incident resonates with for me. I’m 17. It’s summertime, 1979.
The single time my father nearly did raise a hand to me.
Mom was out of town on a job conference.
She had asked me to clean our bathroom. Commode, sink, tub, and floor.
My memory is that I did a kinda half assery job at it, but that I did work on all parts requested.
He came home drunk, his natural state.
Wen’t into the restroom and the flood of cursing and name calling sent in my direction was unusual, even for him….I won’t reproduce it here. He came out to the back room, the one with the wall full of windows in it.
“You little **it! I ought to beat you up!”
And, as has been the case for decades now, when the chips were down, I did something insanely stupid.
I straightened up, cricked my neck to make sure I could at my father’s face up there eight inches taller than me… and yelled back:
“I’d like to see you try!
The minute you’re done, I’m calling the cops! Or a lawyer!”
His face got all funny. He backed away, put his head in his hands and began weeping.
I walked to my room and shut the door.
The only reason it went that way instead of Judge Adams way, is that my father was not a predator. He was not a sadist. The alcohol had turned him into an emotional abuser, but there was still enough of the original guy left over that he couldn’t physically hurt a kid.
I don’t see Judge Adams as a human being. He’s like some cold souless alien from a ’50’s sci fi film.
In keeping with that characterization, I submit that creatures like Adams deserve only one thing. A cold slimy black steel barred cage in the bottom of a deep deep hole.
And just a warning: Don’t *beat* on any of my tribe where I can see it or there will be consequences.