I think of the great modern philosopher Louis C.K. who said, “I finally have the body I want. It’s easy, actually, you just have to want a really shitty body.”

Let's face it: we all got fat last year. So let's make a pact and promise to stop feeling bad about it. You know how American teenagers in made-for-TV-movies make pregnancy pacts based on real life scenarios where six girls agree to get knocked up at the same time? Yeah, we'll do that - but for people who got fat.

I, Nadia Brickhouse, do solemnly swear that, having gained 20 pounds, I will judge neither myself nor anyone else for having put on weight.

I will feel neither superior to nor less than friends who have done the same. We are all equals in this world – because we all got fat.

I say that everyone got fat this year because
1. I got fat 
2. and so did some friends of mine
3. and also some people I don’t know very well.

Maybe they had a kid, or switched their meds. Maybe, like me, they quit smoking and took up marathon-eating Zaatar W Zeit haloumi sticks as a replacement. Or maybe they had an epiphany and realized that life is too short to spend even one precious moment of it counting calories or running on a treadmill in line with your fellow humanoid drones. Who knows?

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I knew I’d for sure gained weight when even my favorite pair of fat pants – leggings, actually -- were tight. Naturally, I was anxious about coming home to my parents’ house for the holidays after a year away from home. Surely this would be the major topic of conversation at every social function (do people have better things to talk about?)

But then, a funny thing happened once I arrived: everyone else had gotten fat too.

My best friends had gotten fat. I only know because they told me. “Oh my God, I've gotten so fat. Am I the fattest person you know now?" one asked. (Truth be told, she looked the same to me). We had this conversation over my welcome-home dinner at which we ate approximately 48,000 calories divided four ways. That same week, I couldn't help but notice a relative’s newly-minted dad gut as he carted his 6-month old son around. A few casual acquaintances had put on weight too.

I found it sweet -- inventing plausible reasons for their gain in my head. There was the "tough custody battle" belly, protruding over pants. The "serene and in a new relationship" spare tire. Also, the “recovering from my manic episode” curves and finally, the "moved back in with my parents" pudge. Judge not lest ye be judged, and please pass the crab dip while you're at it.

There were, in fact, a few exceptions to the "everyone's gotten fat" rule. A friend who was unusually tiny told me it was because she was miserable and had lost her appetite. (Funny, that never happens to me.) One male friend who'd lost weight told me, simply, his friends had been giving him grief for "dressing like a skinny guy when I wasn't thin." In response, my friend began some sort of exercise regime and caveman diet that involved putting butter in his coffee.

This further cemented my belief that the only thing men have to do to lose weight is think about losing weight, and then (poof!) it just magically happens. The reverse is true for women; the more we think about losing weight, the harder we dig our heels into whatever size we are.

So, seeing as how we all got fat this past year – can we all just agree to give ourselves a break?

We All Got Fat, So Let's Agree To Stop Complaining About It

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