View Full Version : What I do For Love by Big Beautiful Dreamer (~BBW, ~BHM, ~~WG)
Big Beautiful Dreamer
01-19-2010, 05:57 AM
~BBW, ~BHM, ~~WG - A loving boyfriend makes a deal with his self-concious girlfriend.
What I do for Love
by Big Beautiful Dreamer
Megan and I met in a bookstore. Not an online dating service, not a sports bar, not an uptown young singles’ group mixer, a bookstore – which tells you a lot. Our relationship took off slowly – very slowly – for Meg was breathtakingly intelligent, dryly funny, and deeply compassionate, but all her attributes (of which those were just a few) did not imbue her with any sense of self-worth, possibly because at 5 foot zip Meg also carried close to two hundred and fifty pounds.
I thought her impossibly beautiful. I loved the cheerful bounty of her full face, those rich dark eyebrows arched above sparkling green eyes nestled in little cushions of alabaster flesh; the full, soft cheeks that flushed rose whenever she laughed, which was often – she was easily delighted and took great pleasure in losing herself in helpless merriment – the pert nose breaking the crest of her face; the soft, full lips pressed invitingly into the swell of that tempting hammock of her double chin, spilling down to soft creamy shoulders, irresistibly squeezable shoulders and arms, her embrace pillowy, dovelike, coming home, softening my own intractable knobbles and sinew.
I loved her generously flowing bosom, wrapped teasingly in drapes of crimson, azure, gold, the cream-spill of flesh pointing toward the delights she concealed within. I loved to embrace her from behind and nuzzle and fondle the rolls of her belly, fold upon fold draping ever so gently onto her substantial hips, her generously cushioned backside, the plump heart’s-curve of thigh and calf.
I thought her the most beautiful thing I had ever seen anywhere, anytime, but Meg disparaged her looks offhandedly, almost reflexively, and over time I had given up my attempts to reassure her, because she deflected them deftly and with a hint of regret. So it was something of a surprise when one evening she was leaning against me on the sofa and quietly started to cry. I started up in surprise at the feel of something dampening my chest.
“Megan! What in the world,” I said, staring at her with concern. This was really unlike her.
“I don’t want you to leave me.” Um, what?
“I’m not going to,” I said helplessly.
“But you have to,” she wailed. Was I missing a couple of pages of the script? Had I gone to the bathroom and missed a crucial plot twist?
“Meg. Sweetness. You’re not talking sense.”
Sniffling, Meg fumbled upright so she could look at me. She shifted a quarter turn, as did I, and we were facing each other. The look on her damp face was heartbreaking.
“I don’t think I’ll ever be able to be thin,” she snuffled. “And look at you, you’re slender and handsome, you deserve a wife as beautiful as you are. We’re both nearing 30 and it’s time you were married ... I need to let you go so you can find a wife.”
I stared at her open-mouthed. The words seemed to be in English but were not making any sense.
“I’m not slender or handsome,” I spluttered. “I’m bony and plain-looking. And as for beauty, you’re the most beautiful woman I have ever encountered, as I have told you over and over again. Even if I were ... handsome ... you’re more than my match in looks. I would never marry anyone if I couldn’t marry you.”
I wouldn’t have called that a proposal – all I was trying to do was scramble out of the sudden hole that I’d found myself in – but then Megan was in my arms.
“Do you really?”
“Uh, do I really what?” I said, absently stroking her thick dark hair.
“Do you really want to marry me?”
I took a deep breath. “I do.” In saying those words I found them to be true. Gently I pushed her off me so I could look her in the eye. “Will you?”
Then her mouth, her gorgeously soft lips, quivered again and her double chin started to tremble. “I can’t.”
A dull throbbing started up in my left temple. Were all women like this? “Well, why not?” I asked, trying hard not to sound exasperated.
“I can’t get thin. A fat bride is embarrassing with a thin groom.”
I tried to follow the convolutions of her logic. “So a lusciously bounteous bride with a ... a fat groom, that would be okay.”
I was groping blindly in this tunnel, I was whacked upside the head, I had no idea which end was up. “Um, shall I get fat?” I thought it a lame proposition, almost as lame as the proposal I had apparently just made, but Meg’s eyes widened as though the thought had blossomed in the evening air as radiant and rare as a night-blooming cereus.
Then she wrinkled her face into a pout. “Joseph, you can’t. Look at you. All elbows and knees, right? And those rugby muscles.”
“I can’t, you won’t let me, or I can’t, I’m incapable?”
“You can’t, you’re incapable,” Meg replied crisply. Even apparently falling apart, she was still relentlessly quick on the uptake. She stood now, smoothed out her rumpled blue tunic, and rested her hands on her head, appraising me.
“I don’t think your waist has ever seen any larger than a size 30 jeans,” she said thoughtfully. “I mean, you’ve never even had a belly to speak of.”
My temples were starting to throb again. I would follow Megan anywhere she wanted to go, but this way lay madness. Madness it would be, then, if it meant keeping my love.
I stood and embraced her, nuzzling her hair, feeling my large hands enfold the softness of her torso. “We can certainly try. Okay?” To my horror, I heard in my tone the voice used to calm lunatics. Soft, soothing, non-threatening. “We can try,” I repeated. I felt her nod against my shoulder.
All that had transpired the night before. Now I awoke, blinking drowsily, into Saturday morning wondering if I’d been dreaming. A cool dent on the other side of the bed ... enticing scents coming from the kitchen ...
Megan padded in carrying a tray heaped with breakfast, enough for four or five people.
“Good morning, Sweet Joe,” she sang. “Sweet Joe for my sweet Joe.” I groggily took a swallow of the coffee and choked. It was heavily laced with sugar and cream.
“Black coffee does not contribute to avoirdupois,” Meg said suggestively.
Oh yeah. That. I took another slug, grimacing. I supposed I could get used to it. Meg perched in the deep velvet-upholstered club chair by the bed, having grabbed a large red apple from the tray.
“Eat, eat,” she said, making me smile.
“Meg ... you really want me to ...”
“Not fat,” she said judiciously. “But a little meat on you, for heaven’s sake.”
Half awake, I obediently tucked into sausage, fried bread, pancakes, strawberries, an apple, biscuits and jelly. By the time I’d finally emptied the tray, despite Megan helping herself, it was nearly eleven o’clock and I was groaningly stuffed. Meg lifted the tray and revealed my aching belly full to bursting, churning with digestive efforts and visibly bulging above my boxers. I laid a hand on it, wincing at its taut distention, and grunted, which turned into a jaw-cracking yawn.
“Time for a nap,” Megan announced.
“Nap! Meg, I never even got up,” I pointed out.
“Well, lie back and help me with the crossword.”
“Lie back” sounded awfully tempting. My gorged and bloated stomach weighed so heavily at the moment I wasn’t altogether sure I could get up even if I really wanted to. I laid back on the pillows. By fourteen across, I was dozing.
I finally rose, stiff and stupid from too much sleep, and shuffled into the kitchen. Meg fed me two huge bowls of a thick creamy chowder and half a dozen large cheddar biscuits, then turned on the ball game. I had no idea if she watched it or not. All I watched was the insides of my eyelids. The last thing I needed was more rest, but after that stopper of a lunch, my eyes closed of their own accord, my brain shutting down so that all auxiliary power could be shuttled to the stomach, where a Defcon 1-level digestion was in progress.
By the time I roused, it was midafternoon and the dog was whining for a walk. Meg and I pulled ourselves together and leashed up Frankie, our mild-tempered golden retriever, for a stroll around the block. The way the neighborhood was laid out, going around the block constituted a one-mile lap, which I sorely needed. By the time we finished, Megan was visibly perspiring, which made her even prettier, and I was puffing. Being on the rugby team in college had translated to weekly pickup games post-college, but since tearing a knee ligament a year ago, lately it had translated to watching the games and cheering my buddies on. I worked out, but that hilly mile, at Frankie’s enthusiastic pace, had left me a little short of breath.
I flopped down on the sofa and heard Megan turn on the shower. What a terrific idea. I waited till she had her eyes closed and her back to the doorway of the shower before stepping in. Bingo. She jumped, squealed, flailed wetly against me so that I got clean almost by osmosis.
The shower went on for so long that we started to run out of hot water. I let Meg get out and dry off while I belatedly soaped myself, then padded to the kitchen wearing a T-shirt and jeans, my dark flop of hair still damp. Megan stood by the stove in a tank top, an unbuttoned bigshirt and cotton yoga pants, stirring a pan of gravy. A pot roast sat on the cutting board ready for slicing, the carrots, potatoes and onions having been offloaded into a bowl. Oh. So that’s what she’d been doing while I napped. I sliced the roast and Megan put on a big-band CD and poured iced tea for us.
My lips twitched as I heaped my plate. “I’m not going to be skinny for long, you keep feeding me like this.”
She laughed. “Is that an invitation or a challenge?”
“I don’t know,” I replied with my mouth full. “You tell me.”
She sobered and I saw her eyes glimmer with unshed tears. “You don’t really have to get fat, Joe. It’s just ... I just...”
“Hey,” I soothed. “I’ll try anything once.” That brought a guaranteed smile, because it had been my accidental pickup line in the bookstore. We were browsing in Fiction and she’d asked me did I like Faulkner. The answer got me a radiant smile the likes of which I’d never seen; enchanted, I’d invited its owner to coffee.
So here I was, shoveling in pot roast, and Megan fetching me a bowl of ice cream with chocolate syrup, my favorite.
“Oof, Meg, slow down,” I protested, raising my hands in surrender. She’d dished up four large scoops and poured what looked like half the bottle of chocolate syrup over it. I was already warmly full of pot roast and potatoes and carrots and crescent rolls, my overloaded stomach pushing at the waistband of my jeans, my sides heavy and aching.
“It’s ice cream,” she replied, sitting down opposite me with her own bowl. “Ice cream goes down easy.”
She was right. I was stuffed to bursting, but each sweet, creamy mouthful, edged with the tang of chocolate, slid unprotestingly down my throat to coat my painfully stuffed tummy and send me into an overfed coma. Zoned out, I waddled from the table, sank onto the sofa, propped my feet up, watched 50 First Dates, let Meg nudge me to bed.
Sunday was much the same. A breakfast so huge and calorific that I nodded off during the sermon in church; a big Sunday dinner at Golden Corral, where by my own calculations I emptied five (count ’em) plates; nap; walk Frankie; then another huge Sunday dinner at home, roast chicken and stuffing, wild rice with carrots and asparagus tips; rolls; applesauce; and a moist apple cake a la mode for dessert. Considering I’d already had one big Sunday dinner, I ate a disgraceful amount, and by the time I was spooning up apple cake I’d had to undo my jeans.
Which factoid I showed Megan afterward. She squealed.
“See?” She was in my arms, her voice muffled, and I was finding myself severely aroused by the proximity to her inviting tummy, itself warmly full of dinner. As she pressed against me I could feel its taut distention meeting mine.
We let the cleanup wait a little.
Later, as we were drifting off to sleep, I thought to remind her that we both worked, and if she tried to feed me like that on weekdays, I’d either fall asleep at the wheel and crash going to work, or I’d fall asleep at my desk after lunch and get fired.
“Dial back,” I advised. “At least a little, at least on weekdays.”
“Mmmm,” was the response.
The next morning brought more coffee thick with cream and sugar, plus scrambled eggs, sausage and toast.
“Meg,” I protested. “This is a lot more than I ever eat in the mornings.”
“You never eat breakfast,” she pointed out. “Which you should.”
Ouch. I glanced at my watch and sat down with the sports section. To my surprise, with breakfast in my tummy, I had more energy and was in a better mood. Not that I would ever admit as much to Megan.
Instead of leaving half my lunch, the way I’d tended to, I dutifully ate all of the pile of fries that came with my club sandwich, though it left me feeling logy and sated all afternoon. (Note to self: easy on the fried food.)
And Megan seemed to have somewhat heeded my plea to dial back on weekdays. She served up a plate of leftover roast, with new potatoes, baby carrots, and caramelized onions. Even if she did heap my plate. I cleaned it, and Megan brought out a reasonable slice of the apple cake, again a la mode. I was full, but the cake looked and smelled tempting. She’d warmed it, and the ice cream was melting, trickling down the moist sides and puddling on the dish. I dug in.
Afterward, though I was stuffed and drowsy, we walked Frankie. We forced her to a reasonable pace – I really think I might have been sick if I’d moved too fast – and in spite of a few impressive belches, the movement aided my digestion somewhat.
I still thought Megan’s initial hysterics completely off base and we’d discussed it, gradually, in small doses. Megan had calmed down, but her basic premise remained the same. It was high time that I found myself a wife, to which my response was that she was the one I wanted to marry. (She never framed it in terms of high time that she found herself a husband, but I strongly suspected ye olde biological clock had started ticking.) Nevertheless, she continued to insist, it would not do to have a fat bride and a thin groom. By age 27, Megan had been on every diet known to man and a few known only to Eurasian space monkeys, and it just wasn’t going anywhere. Ergo, she said, if she couldn’t get thin, I would have to fatten up.
Through all this, I continued my ground – the repeating bass-clef motif – that I loved her and found her beautiful not in spite of her figure, but in part because of her figure. I ramped up the size-specific compliments and degraded both the self-centered attitudes and figure faults of average women and expounded until I was taxing my vocabulary on how appealing was her soft deluxe chin, her rosy, round cheeks, her creamy shoulders and comfortably squashy arms, her hillocks of sweet bosom, her delectable cleavage, her inviting rolls of tummy, her bountiful hips and backside, the soft swell of thigh and calf concealing treasure therein.
And meant every word. I was decent-looking, employed, and with not too many deplorable habits and had consequently had girlfriends before having met Megan a year or so earlier. Mostly I had dated women who were at least a little padded, one or two deluxe size, but it was Megan’s roses-and-cream avoirdupois that stopped my heart in its tracks. You could have thrown Megan Fox, Charlize Theron, Jennifer Garner and Sandra Bullock at me one after the other, topping off with Carrie Underwood and Taylor Swift, and I would have yawned. None of those bony beauties held the least appeal for me. My favorite movie was Shallow Hal.
Megan, meanwhile, was battling more than 20 years of demons, the well-remembered taunts of grade school, the pranks of junior high and the subtle digs of high school, the solo loneliness of college and the quirks of adulthood wherein she was everyone’s good-time fat-people-are-jolly pal but no one’s sweetheart. I was, she claimed, only her third boyfriend.
I found that hard to believe, since I loved her on so many levels, but the knowledge that both of us had had quirky romantic backgrounds was almost beside the point. We had found each other, and we loved each other, and slowly, slowly, perhaps my darling was beginning to allow to take root and flourish the idea that I truly found her lovely as she was.
In truth, I thought her weight might be creeping up a tad. She didn’t eat as hugely as she was encouraging me to eat, but she did eat. She also did those Frankie walks with me, but as spring inched in and clothing got lighter and less layered, I thought I saw a trifle of beautiful uptick around her face, midsection, and backside.
Certainly there was more than a trifle of uptick in mine.
And your descriptions of her in paragraph 2? Classic!
01-19-2010, 07:31 PM
Another great story begun...
Big Beautiful Dreamer
01-20-2010, 05:35 AM
The first I noticed it was after a month or so of Megan’s tender loving care. Just awakened, I sat on the side of my bed in boxers, scrubbing my hands through my hair and letting consciousness come all the way up. I was hungry, naturally enough, but when I looked down to see if my slippers were where I thought they were, I saw a pot belly.
A small one. Modest, even. A little rounded paunchlet. A hint of softening on either side of a protrusion.
But there it was. Megan on the other side of me was getting up.
“Meg,” I said quietly, not moving, as though the little pudge was a bird I was watching that might take off. Species abdominus pudgetii.
“C’mere,” I said. “Look at my belly. My empty belly.”
Meg’s face lit up like the Fourth of July.
“Stand up, stand up!” she begged, tugging at my hands. Laughing, I got to my feet. The belly diminished instantly, but even with me standing up there was an unmistakable thickening of my waist. There was a new layer of softness, a gentle hint of undulation around the elastic of the undershorts. Teasing, I thrust my abdomen out as far as I could. Meg pulled me into an embrace.
“This what you want?” My voice was muffled by her hair.
“A tiny start,” she conceded. “Training wheels.”
I pulled back. “Megan, how fat do you want me?”
Instantly she froze. “You say fat like it’s an insult. Like asking me how crude or ignorant I want you to be.” She backed away. As she headed toward the bathroom, she continued: “You’ve always been thin. I’m not asking you to get enormous. I’m not aiming for the quarter-ton milestone – but I would like you to be bigger. And if fat is an insult, if it’s dissing, what does that make me? Your fat chippie? The cow in your bed?”
I followed her. “Megan. Sweetness. I’m sorry.” I meant it. “That was really thoughtless of me. How about a big dinner out tomorrow?” Tomorrow was Saturday.
“Right now you’re a thin guy. I want you to become a big guy. And not think of it as lowering yourself for sweet charity’s sake.” She had brushed her hair and was applying lipstick. The pout was enormously endearing, in spite of the smoldering anger I knew was behind it. It was all I could do not to drag her back to bed.
“I’ll bring home takeout tonight,” I proposed. “We’ll talk. Okay?”
“Okay.” Still a hint of chill. More than a hint.
I was all but useless that day at work. I shuffled papers, but my mind was on our morning’s converse. I loved Megan – not just that; I loved Megan fat. She called herself that, some of the time, used the word as a descriptive of herself, didn’t treat it like an f-bomb that no civilized person would say aloud, and seemed to like it when I called her my fatty, my chubby cheeks, my dumpling, my cushioned cohabit. She seemed to revel in compliments to her tummy rolls, her dimpled backside, the lush cushioning of her arms and legs.
So why had I recoiled at the thought of myself becoming fat? Was I that vain a peacock? Did so much of my self-image depend on smugly fastening my 30-waist trousers and threading in the needed belt? I had never in my life experienced the sensation of putting on an old favorite article of clothing and feeling the snug, the tug, of inadequate amounts of fabric. I’d never (until the last month) sunk onto the sofa after a meal and felt compelled to undo my trousers so as to continue breathing without pain. Until Megan had started her campaign, I’d never done up my trousers and looked down at a resulting muffin top.
All those things that were second nature, routine, to Meg, were alien to me. A repeated phrase from the Bible popped into my head: “the alien and the stranger among you.” In the Old Testament, the Israelites were repeatedly adjured to care for the alien and the stranger in their midst. I was entering Megan’s world, and the customs were different. I could be the ugly tourist, sticking stubbornly to my known routines and closing my eyes to the unexpected strange beauty all around me, or I could go native. And to do so, it seemed, would require a significant adjustment of attitude on my part. I had sent a loudly hypocritical message in reveling in Megan’s being fat, while disdaining such a state for my own self. That was a message so mixed that delivering it to a child in my care would have entitled said child to years of therapy down the road. Did I value my own, and my darling’s, opinion of me so little that it hinged on that slender waist that I was beginning to lose? Did I depend so heavily on the views of strangers and acquaintances?
My mind chewed those over (whoops) all day. Finally, exhausted, I went home, stopping first to place an order for a large Italian-dinner takeout, enough for four or five people.
Dear heart! Megan had taken me at my word. The table was set, cloth napkins artfully folded, a bottle of red wine breathing and another waiting, candles lit, and Megan was wearing her white lace caftan with muslin undershift, my favorite of her outfits. She gave me only a half-smile, though, as she helped me unpack the containers. She let me fill my own plate. I heaped it. Then I lifted my wineglass.
“Megan,” I said, taking a deep breath. “You were one thousand percent right and I was wrong. I’ve been a hypocrite, a vain peacock, and stupid to boot. I beg your pardon a hundred times over and hope you will forgive me. I hereby officially embrace life, with the full optional enjoyment package! To you, my lovely heart, for opening my eyes.”
Megan’s own eyes were brimming after that toast. I undid my tie, opened the collar button, and lifted a heaping forkful.
Did I say I had brought home enough food for four or five people? Take a feast for five – a lavish feast for five. Divide by two and multiply by two full bottles of red wine (Meg was a short hitter, so that would be three pours for me, one for her). Stir well. Top with enormous cannoli.
“Ohh–hic!–ohhhhh,” I groaned. It had taken me three tries to brace my hands on the table and haul into an almost standing position. I was staggeringly, achingly full, so stuffed to the gills that it actually hurt to straighten up. Slightly bent over, dragging my gorged and bloated stomach cautiously along, I made my way toward the sofa. Meg halted my staggering progress and undid my poor belt, which flew open several notches on its own, then undid my trousers and tugged down the zipper. The relief was immediate, though not quite as complete as I’d hoped. Still, it felt wonderful to get some of the pressure off my swollen and enormously distended midsection. I sank onto the sofa and sprawled my legs out.
“Hic. Might have ... hic ... eaten ... too much,” I panted. I was so full that my breath was coming in short puffs, my mouth open. It hurt to even try to take a deep breath. I cradled my roundly protruding belly, a little taken aback at how firm it was. Filled to the brim, not a hint of give to it, and my shirt, now unbuttoned, would not even come close to fastening over it.
Meg sank down beside me and tugged my hand over to rest on her own tummy. Beneath thin layers of lace and muslin I felt a corresponding firmness, which I happily palmed, delighting in the sensate warmth, the way her full stomach, like mine, radiated taut, brimful bounty. She crossed her arm over and laid her soft hand on my own engorged belly.
“Ooh,” she said happily, then stifled a belch. “Pardon me.” Her eyelids fluttered, her face rosily drowsy – like mine, I imagined. Certainly my face felt a little flushed with initial digestive efforts. My own responsive belch was un-stifle-able.
Megan giggled. I hiccupped.
“Oof. Hic. I might die of a surfeit of ravioli. Hic.”
We lay slumped, happily sodden with food and drink, for a space, until we eventually managed to reel off to bed. There we slowly and sleepily cuddled, tracing each other’s contours, hers lushly beloved and familiar, mine ever-shifting and changing.
“’dyou mean what you said?” she yawned as we slid into sleep.
“Every word,” I mumbled. “Hic. Every bite.”
Big Beautiful Dreamer
01-20-2010, 02:49 PM
A month of fattening me up became two, and the hint of pudge came out of the shadows. My 30-inch waist was becoming an endangered species. The scale said I’d put on ten pounds, which was a lot, rather quickly. I wondered just how fast Megan wanted me fat and how she would define her terms. I was now up to 190 pounds on a five-eleven frame, not fat but with a visibly thickening waist. My belly was soft, even when empty, and when full it was consistently distended, roundly firm, and my trousers were invariably undone. I started wearing sweats on the weekend so that there was nothing to undo.
Still, I broached the subject of terms, definitions, and time frame carefully. Megan did research for an insurance firm and her mind worked on shadings and precise boundary markers.
I waited until one Friday evening when I had gorged myself stupid on two large pizzas to Megan’s one. And between us we’d killed all of one two-liter pop and a good amount of the second. I was achingly stuffed, my belly tender and sore and audibly gurgling and churning. I’d shoved the waistband of the sweatpants down and my shirt up and lay on the sofa, resting a protective hand on my hugely bloated gut. I felt as though I had a Volkswagen resting on my stomach.
“Mmm.” Meg was sprawled in the club chair, resting a hand on her own rosily swollen tummy. From time to time she poked gently at it as if to affirm that there was no give, that it was still firm as a drum. Her face was flushed and she idly fanned herself with the other hand.
“You want me to be a big guy.”
“Mmm...hmm.” She hiccupped. “Ooh! Hic. Mmm.”
“Did you--mrrp–have some ... I don’t know ... time–hic!–time frame, or number, or something, in mind? Hic.”
“You tell–hic–tell me. Oof.”
Megan braced herself and hauled herself upright. She gave me her thinking-about-work look, eyebrows arched, sweet full lips pursed, tapping a plump digit on the tip of her first chin.
“You’re one-eighty now,” she said consideringly.
“One-ninety. Ohhh.” I pressed cautiously on my gurgling belly to make sure all that digestion was going to stay in the desired location and stifled the resulting belch. “Oof.”
“One-ninety.” She thought some more. Then her eyes widened.
“I wonder what you would look l–hic! Ow.–look like at two-fifty.” Which not so coincidentally happened to be Megan’s fighting weight, or it had been. She might have ticked up five or six pounds lately, but it was hard to really tell.
That was actually a good idea. Two-fifty would put me seventy pounds up on where I’d started. Even on a guy of average-tall height, seventy pounds would make a visible difference.
“When do you ... when do you want me there? Urrrrp. Urp.” Oh, that felt better. The achingly tight sensation across my middle eased a little.
“Mmmm. Chric! Hic. Ow. Christmas?” Megan slid back down and began massaging her chest and tummy. She’d triggered a painful couple of hiccups, making her cheeks turn deep red for a minute, then subsided.
That was certainly reasonable. That was ... I counted ... ten months from now.
“That’s, what, like six pounds a month?”
“That sounds right,” she said.
“I’ve already put on ten. Hic.”
“In two months,” she pointed out. “So at about this kind of pace.”
“Mmmm.” I moaned, half from a slight easing of the immediate fullness, and half at the thought of stuffing myself early and often. Reluctantly I hauled myself up and pulled Megan to her feet.
“You could use a tummy rub in bed,” I suggested, which made her face suffuse pink all over again.
Continued in post #9
01-21-2010, 05:51 AM
Your best yet!
01-21-2010, 02:28 PM
I love the reality and the realization of what it takes to become very fat. thank you for the wonderful prospective. Mac
01-22-2010, 07:24 AM
Only you could work an Isaiah passage into a weight-gain story...brava! Beautifully crafted, as always :)
Big Beautiful Dreamer
01-22-2010, 08:06 AM
Author's note: The word "psyche" comes from the Greek word for soul, but I am here using it to represent an antagonist to instinctual responses. The "thinking" vs. the "feeling" positions. And the statistical likelihood figures for the group in the park are made up.
Of course, the fact that I was acquiring some padding in the midriff did not go completely unnoticed. The next Monday at work, Carl Goodfern slid his mug along the counter where I was pouring myself some coffee. I obligingly filled the mug (“My wife brakes for yard sales. Send help”) and said:
Carl waited a beat, then said, “Didn’t know you and Megan sneaked off and got married.”
“Wait, what?” I said, stirring sugar and cream in. I was actually beginning to like the sweetened sludge.
Carl raised an eyebrow. “Gettin’ a little married man’s pot.” He patted his own waist, which was noticeably thicker now than it had been when he’d married Marijane a couple of years earlier. “Trust me, bro, it happens,” he said sympathetically.
“Hate to wreck your statistical curve, Carl, but we’re not married,” I said. Man up or flat lie? Either option was distasteful. “I guess I’ve been hitting the trough pretty good.” Entirely true but beside the point: a diversion, the storyteller’s friend.
Carl laughed. “Happens to the best of us.” He patted my shoulder. “Oh, hey, remind me to get the Levensohn file back to you.”
“Okay,” I said. “Get the Levensohn file back to me.”
When the file reappeared, though, my thoughts were elsewhere. I spent an inordinate amount of time that day looking at myself, front and side views, in the restroom mirror. Ten pounds, give or take, wasn’t much. But there was a developing paunch within my waistband, which was decidedly tight by now.
A little ten-pound uptick was nothing to write home about ... and besides, I’d already had this discussion with myself. Why wouldn’t my vanity lie down and die? I was 28 years old, my metabolism was already probably not what it was when I was 20. I was living with someone, so even if we weren’t married we were cohabiting, and I’d had to give up on the weekly rugby matches that had expended a buttload of calories; now my only exercise outside the bedroom came from walking Frankie, which Meg and I did together, morning and evening, every day, dutifully carrying little sandwich bags along for Frankie’s output. I had every excuse and then some for pudging up. And it was only ten pounds, for crummy sake.
Today ten pounds ... apres les dix, le deluge, a little voice in the back of my head mocked. My inner voice tended to sarcasm and pretension much more than I did. Translated, what it was saying, of course, was that ten pounds was only the first chapter of the project I had agreed to undertake, not for sweet charity’s sake but for sweet Megan’s sake.
Ten would become twenty, thirty, fifty. I tried to visualize myself as I’d seen fat guys on the beach: pecs become flopping moobs, sitting flaccidly on the ribcage; a line of perspiration and sunblock smudging the areas where one roll of belly rested on the next; the swim shorts held up only by an industrial-strength drawstring. Was that what I would become? I knew how I felt about Megan being deluxe size. Why did this nagging part of me think that if turn about was fair play, I would come across as some beer-swilling slob and not the boyfriend version of my beautiful sweetheart? (I didn’t even like beer that much.)
I called Megan late in the afternoon and told her that I would be late coming home. She didn’t ask why, and I didn’t say. Then I went to a nearby park, one that on beautiful spring days like this one were, I knew, popular and populated. I sat down on a bench near one of the paths and proceeded to people-watch, pen and pad in hand.
Each person who passed by, after they’d moved on, I made a note, giving them an instinctive, gut-level (if you will) rating on a scale of one to ten. I also made a note of a rough guess at their height and weight. I had a pretty good visual memory, and after a half-hour or so, I called to mind the people I’d seen and looked over the notes I’d made.
I’d recorded thirty-five females. Unsurprisingly, I’d found that every woman who came close to Hollywood standards of stick-thin beauty got a thumbs way down from me. To my tastes, they appeared bony, unhealthy, and not the least appealing. A woman’s elbows and knees should not be the broadest parts of her arms and legs, for crummy sake.
The ones with a reasonable amount of padding – if questioned, they’d probably say they wanted to lose ten or fifteen pounds – were better looking. Everyone benefits from a little cushioning. And it was the women who, according to my guesstimates, were 200 pounds and up whom I found most attractive. I’d even gotten a couple of stiffies just from looking.
In the same period, I’d recorded eighteen guys. Here’s where my instincts gave my psyche a run for its money. Three guys were skinny, four “average,” six pudgy, and five fat, the last group ranging, again in my guesstimate, from two sixty to three hundred. The skinny guys looked really unhealthy, not at all attractive. They looked like a trio of terminal patients loosed from the critical ward of the local hospital. The average guys scarcely registered, each one garnering a 4 on my chart. But what blew me out of the water was the other men. All six of the men I’d classed as pudgy, probably from two hundred to two fifty, I’d rated as 8 or higher. The biggest guys? Three 7's and two 8's.
What the hell!
While my mind and my inner sarcastic voice were trying to convince me that it was really important to me to stay thin, or at least average, my instincts were telling me that I believed thin-to-average men to rate poorly on the objective (ha!) Attractiveness Chart. And that I felt that bigger guys were better looking. I had not mentally classed even one of them as slobs, losers, beer-swillers, or anything else. I knew that statistically, since my group had consisted of eighteen males, at least three were likely to be divorced, one likely to be in foreclosure, one to two likely to be gay, two likely to have some form of mental illness, and three likely to be alcoholics or at least have a problem with alcohol or another addictive substance. In other words, regardless of size, people are unique individuals, albeit with classifications and categories into which we all fit to some degree.
How many times had I had this discussion with Megan? It didn’t matter if total strangers looked at her and privately dismissed her because she was a big girl. She was my darling, the light of my life, and the reason I woke up smiling each morning. She was bright as hell, very well read, an active volunteer, hard-working and well-respected in her field, funny, compassionate, a terrific cook. All that mattered a great deal – her size was a bonus, if you will.
Similarly, my own traits were not likely to change measurably with weight gain. I would still help out at the soup kitchen one evening a month, still serve as an usher at church, still be able to match wits and enjoy wide-ranging conversations and discussions with Megan and our friends, still enjoy books and music and movies. The only thing – the only thing – that would change would be that I would be making Megan happier. The comments like Carl’s that morning were only words: disturbances of the air that caused aural vibrations, then vanished like smoke rings.
My psyche remained unconvinced, though I sensed that it was at least wriggling around on that fence and thinking about sliding off it and landing on one side or the other. Soon, I hoped. Then I went home, having first given Meg an ETA.
Duly warned, Meg was able to lay a hot dinner on the table. Her homemade chicken-cheddar pot pie, which brims with four cups of cooked cubed chicken and two cups of shredded cheddar cheese, plus potatoes, carrots, celery, onions, and a white sauce. She also served up broccoli-stuffing casserole, pureed squash with nutmeg, and crescent rolls. Have I mentioned Megan’s love of cooking?
After the first helping of everything, while she dished me up again, I told her where I’d been and (sort of) why. At least a sanitized version of why, run through my psyche’s approval filter. She thought about that for a while, the silence making a comfortable hammock between us, as we absorbed ourselves in more pot pie, broccoli, squash, and rolls. I was getting full, but this was one of my favorite meals, and it was labor-intensive, so we didn’t have it often.
“That’s really interesting,” she said, finally, and mentioned that the latest Netflix had come in the mail and did I feel like watching Pollock with her.
Great. Meg was not going to join me in meandering through the thickets of this instinct-psyche epic. Which, fair play to her. It was so very internal that I wasn’t entirely sure that I was joining myself in meandering through them.
The recipe made a whole chicken pot pie, baked up in Megan’s ceramic deep pie dish, so I was a little surprised to find the dish empty. I had eaten at least half the pie, plus goodly servings of everything else. I drained my glass and hiccupped sharply.
“Good. Hic. Stuffed,” I grunted, finding myself so full I was short of breath. And on a Monday, dammit, which meant that I’d sleep fitfully and be drowsy at work the next day. I hiccupped again as I braced my hands on the table. My stomach was aching, tight and stretched, so distended that it felt as though any movement would hurt. I dreaded having to stand up.
I re-braced my hands and pushed. Oof. Too full to straighten up, I grimaced as I shuffled over to the sofa. I hastily undid my trousers and sank down, sliding the waistband of my boxers out of the way and tugging open my shirt buttons to spare them the strain.
“Owoo,” I moaned, massaging my tautly gorged and bloated belly below my undershirt, which was pulled so snug I wasn’t sure I’d be able to take it off later. “Hic. Ohhh. Ate too much.” I pressed very gingerly, easing out a belch. “Urp. Mrrp. Oh.”
Megan started the movie, then sat down beside me. Her own tummy was roundly swollen, the fabric of her tunic pulled snug across its distention. I could hear it gurgling and squeaking, or was that mine? We both half-watched the movie, Ed Harris as the mercurial and wildly creative modern painter, and slowly let digestion take its course.
I was determined to be a little more restrained during the week, but when Friday came Megan had brought home the same pile of Italian takeout we’d had that evening I’d toasted her and promised to do as she asked. I ate and ate, happily, enjoying the flavors, savoring the creaminess of ricotta melded with the tang of tomato, the crisp slick crunch of heavily buttered garlic bread, the bite of the wine. Oddly, though I was very full indeed afterward, I didn’t think I was quite as achingly stupefied as the last time I’d eaten the same meal.
“Ohh–hic!–ohhhhh,” I groaned. I was, however, stuffed to the gills. I sank onto the sofa and sprawled my legs out, having automatically pushed the now-constricting waistband of my sweats and underwear out of the way. “Hic. Good.” I caught my breath. “Maybe in ... urrrp... ooh. A little while. Some of–hic–that pie.” Megan had put an apple crumb pie in the oven to warm, even though we’d each polished off a couple of large cannoli.
“A la mode,” Megan suggested. “Oh. Hic!”
“Course.” Silently, half-listening to Randy Travis, we massaged our swollen and tender bellies, coaxing up belches, savoring the fullness, the heaviness and warmth, the stupefaction of satiation.
When the pie was ready, I ate a third of it, half buried under the ice cream.
And my Saturday morning scale check showed me at one ninety four. And a half. Megan stepped on after I stepped off, and I gave the numbers an idle glance. She couldn’t see them that well and I was habituated to checking anyway.
“Two fifty eight,” I said. “Up a little.” I gave her a sideways hug. “Right ... here.” A grab of her lovely soft tummy roll. She giggled. Then Frankie whined to go out, and the moment was over.
My psyche appeared to have gone on vacation.
Big Beautiful Dreamer
01-22-2010, 02:29 PM
Now, ten pounds might go mostly unnoticed. Even fifteen. But twenty-five pounds is a little harder to hide, even after I’d hit the secondhand stores and bought some shirts and pants that had a little more breathing room to them. And it was closing in on Memorial Day weekend and the occasion of my family lakeside get-together that I approached this year with a little knot of dread in my swelling stomach. Megan and I had been dating only a few months at last year’s do, but everyone liked her and we were an accepted item. That wasn’t it. I wondered what the family would have to say about my visibly thickening waistline.
I’d passed the big two-oh-oh mark a week or so back, so my five-eleven frame was now hauling around 205 pounds, give or take. I had developed the sort of softening midsection I’d seen on, um, married men, a little flop of love handles, and in a couple of snapshots of myself where I’d happened to be drawing my head back at the moment of snap I could see an incipient second chin beginning to push out, a pad of cushion at the throat. My ribs were beginning to acquire a layer of padding and I’d stepped up to 34-waist jeans, which were a little hard to zip up right out of the dryer.
Megan, meanwhile, seemed to be gliding up and down a sliding (ahem) scale between 250 and 260. I liked the soft majesty of her belly at the higher weight, and tried to tell her so, but she often kept her own counsel about her figure, so it was hard to tell. I was just the messenger, ma’am, telling her what the scale said that week. But at the higher end of the range, between her softly generous breasts and the hammock of her lower belly, her tummy pushed out, warm and welcoming, just begging for a cuddle, which I shamelessly indulged, often.
At any rate, the family gathering. I was wearing a new T shirt that had plenty of room to it, khaki shorts with a 36 waistband and a belt, to avoid any hint of snugness, and since I didn’t care for lake swimming and seldom went in the water at these things, I thought I could avoid taking off my shirt.
For in addition to the unmistakable pudgy belly and love handles and padding over the ribs, I had acquired a change to my pecs. Once exercise-firmed, they had softened, and my nipples now sat poufed forward slightly like stiffened meringue, hinting that with a little encouragement they would begin to flop into the moobs I’d seen on big guys at the beach. The sensation bugged me, but Megan certainly seemed to find them appealing, which somewhat eased my discomfort.
“Sweeeetieeeeee,” Mom called, flying into an embrace before I was completely out of the car. She caught her breath, straightened her straw cap, and looked me over.
“Well! Joseph! You look wonnnnnderful.” Mom spoke Deliberate Drawl. “Healthy and happy, and I don’t know, just .... healthy.” That was as close as Mom would get to a direct statement on someone’s personal appearance. She was determined to live with Mister Bluebird on her shoulder 24-7 since she’d succeeded in passing the five-year mark with her breast cancer in remission. She wore a pink scoop-neck T shirt with a sequined pink ribbon on it and khaki capris that hugged her little I’m-over-fifty kangaroo belly pouch.
“Megan. Darrrlinnnng.” Mom gave Megan a Relatives Hug. “That is the cutest top! That shade of green just flatters you no ennnnd.”
“Mrs. Reece, it’s great to see you again.” Meg returned Mom’s hug. “We’re so glad to be here.”
Eventually, wading through hugs, fist bumps, high fives, and other familial greetings, we made our way to the back yard and the shade of the ancient pin oak trees. Dad sat beneath one in a lawn chair.
“Pull up a bench.” He patted the chair next to me. Megan had gone off with my sister’s tween daughter to give her a pedicure (with my sister’s permission).
He handed me a pop, beads of condensation sliding down the bright can.
“Same old, same old.” I was a jury consultant. I worked for a law firm assessing jury pools and I liked my work, but there wasn’t all that much to talk about. It was something you did with a bachelor’s in sociology and a master’s degree in statistics. Megan and I had actually met at a statistical society’s annual gathering.
Pop and I talked about this and that for a while, watching others play horseshoes, Frisbee, tag, my brother and his son throwing a ball back and forth. Eventually Pop said:
“Megan’s a big girl, Joe.”
Hunh? “Yeah, Pop,” I said cautiously, unsure whether he meant grownup or fat.
“You’re getting a little big yourself there.”
Oh, that. In for a penny, in for a ... um ... pound. “Uh, yeah, Pop. I know. Meg’s a good cook, and I know I’ve been hitting the trough pretty good.” I paused. “Meg ... ah, Meg likes it.” Ticklish territory, this.
There was a silence as Pop mulled over what we’d both said. “You want to show some control. Don’t want to let it affect your career.”
I’d absorbed a great deal of statistical information in the last eight or ten years. I probably knew better than he did, in black and white, evidence of discrimination against deluxe size individuals, particularly in a setting such as a jury room: how people were sometimes inclined to discount larger people’s opinions. But this wasn’t work, this wasn’t papers and my paid advice to the counselors in their charcoal suits. This was Pop, sipping a Coke, squinting at his relatives, and telling me that he thought I could stand to lose weight.
What came next came without rancor and also without thinking. Instinct bumped Ration right out of the driver’s seat and grabbed the reins that led to my mouth.
“It’s not a matter of control, Pop,” I said, so softly that he leaned a little closer to hear better.
“I’ve put on some weight lately because both Megan and I are happier with me being somewhat bigger.”
Pop wrinkled his nose as though their ancient Lab, Maybelle, had farted. “You’re putting on weight on purpose.”
“I guess that’s one way to look at it.”
He sat back in the chair, absently scratched his balding head, and sat in silence for a long minute or so.
“Oh,” he said finally. “Well.” He blew out his breath, then got to his feet. “I spose you’re a grown fellow.” He moved, a little stiffly, toward the barbecue grill. He had lupus and had to avoid direct sunlight, so the grill was in a part of the deck that had one of those retractable awnings over it. Pop wasn’t about to give up his grilling.
As we sat around the back yard with our plates, Mom, who’d made a point of sitting next to me, waited until Megan had gone inside for more drinks before leaning toward me.
“Mmyeah?” I was debating whether I wanted a third burger. I wanted another brat, too, and I wasn’t completely sure I had room for both. I was inclining toward getting one more of each anyway.
“Daddy talked to me earlier.” We’d always called him Pop, but she always referred to him, in conversation with us, as Daddy. Go figure.
“He said ... well ... he said he nooooticed that you’d beguuuun to put on a little weeeeeight.” Mom’s drawls were heightened by either enthusiasm or reticence. This was almost certainly a case of the latter.
“Ah, yeah, I have.” Megan returned, bringing me another burger and a brat; she’d read my mind. Mom watched her set them on my plate and head back inside to help bring out watermelon. Mom watched me take another handful of chips.
“He saiiiiiiid ... he saiiiiid ... that you were gaining weight on purpose.” Mom took a swallow of sparkling water. “That ... your darrrrrlinnng girrrrl ... liiiiikes you ... biiiiiiig.”
I took a large bite of burger, buying a little time.
“Well, um, I don’t know how I’d phrase it exactly, but that’s more or less accurate.”
“Sweetieee.” Her drawl was dialing back a little. The worst of the crisis had ebbed. Maybe. “Sweetieee. Fat people are ...”
“Fat people are?” There was an edge to my voice. Even I heard it. Mom couldn’t have missed it.
“Wellll ... Megan is darrrlinnng. We loooove herrrr. But ... you knowwwww ... soommme peeeeeoplllle think ... people who are ... faaaat ... are ... well, they just think leeeessss of themmmmm.” Mom patted my shoulder. “You’re so briiiiight ... and I just don’t want annnyonnnne to think leeeesssss of my baaaaayyyybeeee.”
Vintage Mom. I almost had to laugh out loud. “Megan’s happiness is very important to me, Mom,” I said. “Megan likes me with a little more meat on my bones. That’s good enough for me.”
“Well, I must saaayy,” Mom said, recovering, “it’s about tiiime you stopped being so bony legged.” She made the clumsy chicken squawk the family had always used to tease me about having long, knobbly-kneed legs and knobbly-elbowed arms.
Mom and Dad faced and conquered. I felt better, although uncomfortably stuffed at the moment. I let my belt out a notch. Better. My belly rode warm and heavy beneath my shirt, not soft but firmly round, distended with an impressive amount of hamburger, brat, potato salad, fruit, chips, and pop. I made for one of the ancient Seventies-era vinyl-strip chaises under one of the trees and gruntingly reclined. Megan appeared from nowhere and claimed the one next to me.
“How’d it go?”
“Oh, you know. Pop had to bring it up and having said something, he’s now satisfied,” I said. “Mom said that some people might think less of me if I was fat, but that it was about time I stopped being so bony legged.” I imitated Mom’s italics but not her drawl. Megan laughed.
Later, Megan off with my sisters, my brother Nathan flopped down next to me, shirtless and sweating from a game of softball.
“Nate the great,” I said back drowsily.
We talked about baseball for a while, then basketball, then his job as a high school history teacher, then Nathan said:
“Puttin’ on a few there. I guess you’re metabolism’s slowing up?” I was three years his senior, the middle child; the three girls were all older: Catherine, Margaret, and Rachel, the oldest, who had entered an Ursuline order out of high school and was a nun, the principal of a private high school in Pennsylvania. She wasn’t cloistered but, as was the case this year, her schedule often didn’t allow her to attend the gathering.
“Um. Maybe.” Like the rest of my family, Nathan was a straight shooter, in temperament the one most like Pop.
“Um, Megan ... she likes me with a little more to me,” I added.
“Tired of those chicken bones,” Nathan suggested tentatively.
“Yep,” I replied.
“Mmm. How much?”
How much what? Oh. “Um, um, around twenty-five pounds, maybe. Two-oh-five, somewhere in there.” I patted my belly, which was currently bloated from the large lunch. “Course, some of this is burgers at the moment.” I stifled a belch.
Nathan smiled and patted his own flat stomach. “Yeah, I ate two. Gonna have a little heartburn.”
“Ice cream will take care of that,” I suggested.
“You want a beer?”
“Sure, okay,” I said, and Nathan ambled off and returned with two sweating bottles.
Headed home in the twilight, I asked Megan if she’d gotten any commentary from Catherine and Margaret.
“Margaret said, ‘He looks so good!’ and Cathy agreed,” Megan said, patting my knee. “That was pretty much it.”
I laughed. “What if I really do show up at Christmas weighing two fifty?”
“Or so,” Megan said, giving the knee a squeeze.
“Or so,” I agreed.
It wasn’t Carl but another colleague, one I scarcely knew, who fired the first direct insult. I was at the copier and he came up behind me, patted my shoulder, and greeted me:
“Hey what?” I said blankly, turning to face him. He lifted his chin.
“I said, ‘Hey Tubs.’” He gestured toward my belly, my now-unmistakable paunch pushing against the waistband of the 34's. I was up to 210 pounds, give or take, which is a fair amount for even averagely tall height. I was starting to look like a before shot in a diet commercial. Pot belly, good-size love handles, a second chin that was visible more often than not, a hint of pec flaccidity.
“I’m a big guy,” I said. “I have no problem with that. Do you?” My tone was quiet and very, very even. I also had a couple of inches of height on him.
He shrugged. “Fatties are losers,” he said, giving up on the copier, which was collating my copies.
It wasn’t until much later that it occurred to me that it was the first time I had referred to myself as a big guy. I wasn’t even that big. If I said “big guy” to myself, I visualized someone rather heavier.
Megan snorted when I told her over pasta primavera in a cream-dill sauce about the showdown at the copier.
“‘Fatties are losers’?” Megan raised her velvet eyebrows. “How fourth-grade can you get?” She looked me over as she heaped a third serving on my plate.
“I don’t know,” I said slowly. “Seems like there’s a threshold, like you’re pudgy and then suddenly you’re fat. I wouldn’t have really said I was there yet.” I told her about using the term “big guy” for myself. Megan shook her head.
“You’re not a big guy,” she said.
“That’s what I thought,” I agreed. “I would save that term for if I was carrying another fifty or sixty pounds.”
“What happens if you get to 250 before Christmas?” Megan asked.
“Hmm, mmf,” I swallowed. “Good question. Um, I don’t actually know. I must say I’m looking forward to enjoying all the December baking and goodies without thinking twice. Maybe we should just say, Let’s see how things are on New Year’s Eve.”
Megan’s eyes sparkled as she took away my empty plate. I’d eaten a little too quickly and my stomach was clutching in discomfort. I slowly stood, cradling the aching distention, and rubbed my gorged and bloated belly.
“Give me five minutes, then come in,” Megan’s voice floated from the bedroom.
I waited five long minutes, leaning against the kitchen counter. Then I waddled, stupid with dinner, into the bedroom.
Candles. Music. The bed turned down. A bottle of lotion. Megan, naked.
“Well, what are you waiting for?” Megan purred. "Big boy.”
Big Beautiful Dreamer
01-25-2010, 05:34 AM
In spite of Megan’s memorable response to the idea of me gradually becoming a big guy, my own mental reservations continued to tug at me. It was only with its loss that I became aware of the subconscious pride I’d taken in having a figure that conformed to the impossible standards that Hollywood and television paraded before us.
I’d be showering, lathering my steadily developing rolls of midsection, and vague negative thoughts would cloud up. I’d begin to feel ashamed and embarrassed – at myself, I guess – while softening belly flesh slipped through my now-pudgy fingers. I’d feel the effort involved in reaching back to clean my spreading backside and notice how soft it was and how much more of it there was. My arms weren’t short, but they were thicker than they’d been, and I was starting to get in the way of myself. Half the time, I skipped washing my calves and feet: bending over was starting to make me short of breath, and the last time I’d tried standing on one foot, I couldn’t draw my other leg up to knee height and almost immediately lost my balance, falling heavily onto the corner bench, soap and washcloth flying.
In the morning, standing at the toilet, I’d give my unmistakably soft stomach a poke or a jiggle and watch it shimmer like Jell-O. I’d once had a belly that was not only flat but reasonably firm, and I had been unaware of taking any pride in it. I worked out because I was habituated to it, and I’d never felt particularly proud of the fact that when I pulled my trousers on they fit well, any more than I took pride in having a clean shave or that my socks matched. It just was what it was. Now when I visited the toilet, I felt what I was doing but didn’t see it, because my steadily expanding belly blocked my view. I was pushing 220, and when I looked down, all I saw was gut. And something else that was disturbing me more than I had expected.
My pecs, in spite of exercise, had acquired a layer of suet that made them a less solid foundation. My nipples no longer rested on a flat surface but were loosely perched on unmistakable little cuppings of flesh.
I had moobs. That was a hell of a word for them, but what else could I think of them as? Mits? Measts? I was dismayed not only that their presence bothered me at all, but that their presence bothered me that much. I was distracting myself at work feeling the way my nipples rested on those flobbly little cushions. I was disturbed by the way they rubbed me on our walks. And it disturbed me that Megan delighted in them.
The first time in bed that she’d grabbed one, I’d jumped a foot and given a grunt of surprise and whacked her hand away, which had understandably ruined the mood. But she would not be dissuaded from cuddling, jiggling, and, um, other activities.
I still didn’t know how reconciled I was to weighing 220 instead of 180. Forty pounds – that’s a goodly amount. You feel it, in big ways and small, and I was still getting used to it. The moob thing, that was weird. But now when I walked I felt a kind of tug and flop of belly overhang. When I sat down I felt my paunch squish over the waistband, which was now a very tight 34 or a 36 with a belt, depending on the pants. My backside oozed out on either side of my office chair, and when meeting a potential client for lunch I’d make sure to get there early enough to pick the seating and be sure to be at a table and not a booth. Booths were beginning to slice into my torso.
And those uninterested quick glances we give each other to acknowledge the presence of other people while on our daily rounds? They were beginning to be accompanied by pursed lips and downdrawn brows, the quick glance sometimes meriting a second. Occasionally I caught a whisper: “Didja see that guy?” And I wasn’t even that big, for crummy sake, and certainly no more remarkable than half the population these days. Yet I was beginning to notice subtle and sometimes open signs of disapproval and even a little disgust.
And a hint of what my darling Megan had felt all her life.
I was fierce in my defense of Megan, and my family, for the most part, knew not to even mention her weight, those digs at the last family gathering notwithstanding. The fierceness sprang from the completeness of my love for her. To criticize her weight was to suggest that she was less intelligent, compassionate, amusing, valued, and valuable than others, and that was so patently untrue that my indignation rose at the least hint of it.
And now it was happening to me.
Finally Megan said, over Crock-pot roast with tomato sauce, onions, carrots, and zucchini:
“That little gray cloud over your head is practically raining on dinner. What’s wrong with you lately?” Said not critically but with concern.
I sighed and poked at the roast. I’d eaten not even half a plateful.
I told her. I told her the digs, the faces that people made, the whispers, the second glances and sneers and widening eyes. I wasn’t even that big, I whined, but people were treating me like a... a...”
“Circus freak,” Megan said, and the depth of understanding sadness in her voice broke my heart.
Megan got up and came around next to me. She hugged me from behind, then slipped into the kitchen and came back with a small pour of red wine for me. I wasn’t sure drowning my mixed emotions was a good idea, but I drank it down like medicine.
“You don’t have to ...” Megan began, and trailed off. My love! As important as this idea was to her, she was sacrificing it for my happiness. I felt a surge of tenderness welling up in my expanding chest. I straightened up and took a large forkful of cooling roast. My mouth very full, I mumbled,
“Bring it on.”
I still couldn’t have told you exactly what was going on in my mind – the emotional roller coaster had not yet come to a complete stop – but I tucked into one, two, three platefuls of roast, with half a dozen of those little dinner rolls on the side, and later a fat slice of German chocolate cake with coconut icing. Mmmmm.
Afterward, Megan and I reclined side by side on the sofa, drowsily stuffed, listening to the harmonic gurgles of our respective digestive systems.
“What you said. Urrp. Earlier. Mrp. I want to.” I stifled the next belch.
“Really?” A tiny voice, a suggestion of tears.
“Hic! Oh, Jos–hic–Joseph.” Megan tipped her head onto my chest and I stroked her hair and rubbed her deliciously soft arm.
Slowly, so gradually that it was impossible to quantify, my attitude began to change. The second glance or disapproving whisper made me feel not vaguely guilty – I’m sorry for causing you disgust – but mildly defensive pride. I’m a big guy. Yes ... yes, I am. And it feels better than you’d think. And I’m good in bed, too.
Even more surprisingly, every once in a while it blew the opposite way. That second glance would be one of surprised interest, a look of ... Hello, handsome, that I recognized from my seemingly distant past. One of the receptionists at work started hand-delivering my phone messages and lingering in the doorway of the office I shared with another consultant.
“Megan must be making you really happy,” she commented one day.
“Hmm?” I replied absently, studying the phone message.
“You look awfully ... I don’t know ... really happy,” she persisted, blushing. “Good.” More blushing. “Shame you’re all spoken for,” she blurted before turning and trotting away.
My weight continued to edge up, slowly but steadily, with an occasional plateau: 220, 230, 240. Two-fifty was starting to seem pretty modest, actually.
It was July and it was hot. I could tell the difference in my size more acutely. When I walked, my spare tire rubbed and tugged against the waistband of my boxers and trousers, a constant momentary clamminess from perspiration-dampened clothing shwucking as I moved. I began to feel perspiration under – under – my moobs, as they became large enough to rest against my pecs. I felt perspiration puddling between my belly rolls and in the creasing of my chin(s) and neck.
Still, I minded the disapprobation of strangers less and less. My walk had a hint of swagger in it that it had never had when I’d been “normal” size. I kept my gaze level and began to feel a new serenity and even, yes, pride. Part of that, of course, was on occasions when I had Megan beside me.
She now vacillated in the mid-260s, nearing 270. I could feel a delightful new cushioning of her soft hands, could see the increase of her second chin. But most of all I reveled in her lovely, bountiful tummy, which protruded between magnificent bosom and rolling hips like an invitation: gentle undulation, teasing cushions and folds, suggestively outlined in the light fabrics that summer demanded. It was all I could do to keep my PDA down to a level that would not get us arrested.
That drape of breast! That tuck of belly! That cushion of hip, swoop of backside, scrumptious curve of calf and soft solidity of thigh. There were days I could hardly stand it. We were having more sex than teenagers on spring break. I was enjoying the change in sensation – from my slim body rolling around on her lovely softness to the mutual squash and wriggle of two well-cushioned bellies, the give and take of our flesh working together in fabulous harmony. I had begun to rethink the original request for 250 and silently wondered if we could both find ourselves at 300. What would that look like? What would it feel like?
Then we would both be unmistakably, measurably fat, even obese – by medical standards and certainly in the eyes of society. Alone or together we would get head-turns, second looks, pursed lips, whisperers on the breeze (“Look at that guy”). Hesitation from food servers, undisguised giggles from teenagers, and probably at least a little more familial talk.
Somehow, I didn’t care. Somehow, gradually, my misplaced vanity was shifting, buried under my steadily expanding waist, my ballooning midsection. If I was proud now, it was at being a big guy, a man-size man. I felt ten feet tall as I went through my day. The occasional insults from jerks at work made me smile benevolently at their ignorance; the well-meaning hints from colleagues rolled off me effortlessly. I almost looked forward to the next family gatherings. It would all be out in the open. They would have to say something or hold their peace. And if they did, I was prepared to defend myself, happily, contentedly, without a hint of guilt.
Besides, I had a secret weapon in mind.
I waited for a Friday evening in September. Brought home enough Italian takeout not for a family of four or five but for eight.
Slowly, savoring, Megan and I leisurely put away huge mounds of ravioli, spaghetti, garlic bread, sauteed mushrooms, three full bottles of red wine between the two of us (she was still a fairly short hitter, so that meant four pours for me, two for her), and, almost lazily, several large cannoli each.
Groaning, we hauled ourselves up, with grunts and bursts of inarticulation. Waddled to the living room, me lowering myself onto the sofa, Megan into the easy chair. For a space we just sort of leaned back, panting.
“Oh, my, hic! I’m full. Hic!” Megan.
“Going to pop.” I stifled a belch, grimacing and massaging my achingly swollen belly, tight as a drum and hugely distended.
“Hic. Ow. I ate too much,” Megan moaned. That was rare for her, but we’d both overdone it, I thought.
“Cannoli. Urrp,” I suggested. As if, had we passed up those desserts, we would have been ready to rumba.
“Ohhh,” Meg groaned. “Oooh. Hic.”
For a while, we lay there, sodden with food and drink, slowly passing from discomfort to satisfaction: the pleasantly replete feeling of having eaten just a little too much and maybe having had one glass of wine too many, but able to revel in the sensation of fullness and the warm heavy ache of stretched tummies and gorged bellies. Stupid with food, we half dozed for a spell.
I got up to answer the call of nature, and when I returned, I knelt on one knee in front of Megan. Oof. I was still stuffed to bursting and the movement was an effort.
“Megan,” I said formally. “You have shown me not just existence but life. You have shown me joy and gusto and enthusiasm, pride and self-worth and devotion. I love you more than I can say. I vow to get to at least three hundred happy, satisfied, proud pounds and maybe beyond ... and I beg of you to come with me, all of our lives, together.”
Megan’s lovely eyes brimmed. She let me slide the diamond onto her finger. “Three hundred,” she murmured throatily. “Three hundred is only the beginning.”
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