There’s a scene in most every rom-com movie where a man and woman do a move I call the “Spin-and-Kiss.” The woman gets chased by her love interest, he grabs her around the waist and then they spin around and it ends in a kiss. Cue Message in a Bottle, or 10 Things I Hate About You, or The Notebook. Or a zillion other movies with picture-perfect endings.
This isn’t something that normally happens for women like me. Big girls simply don’t Spin-and-Kiss. It doesn’t mean we don’t find love (we do) or that our partners don’t embrace us (they do). Blame it on heft or gravity or just plain physics; the Spin-and-Kiss tends to pass us by.
We don’t get picked up, or swung around or tossed about like delighted ragdolls. Instead, we exercise caution. We train ourselves to be aware of our body and how it relates to the space it inhibits. Restaurants with tight tables, large crowds to zigzag through. For more slender women, these moments go unnoticed, like air. But if you’re larger, you know that each moment comprises infinite decisions shaped by our own body reality. Our moves are more calculated and, sometimes, a whole lot less carefree.
But is it really physics that gets in our way? Or is it our own personal apprehension and doubt that stops us in our tracks. Stops us from letting go, from swept-up moments of delight? Is it simply our fear that keeps us on the precipice?
For proof of this, I ask you to think about the last time you sat on someone’s lap without pausing. Or even allowed yourself to sit on a lap in general? Or ran at your lover from across the room and let yourself jump into warm, welcoming arms without thinking twice?
In the course of dating, I once met This Guy. He was younger than me, vibrant, with a head full of shaggy hair I always wanted to thread my fingers through. He liked hipster music, drank craft beer, was creative and funny and… skinny. The first time we went out my thoughts flip-flopped between relishing deep belly laughs and wondering how exactly things would work if we were in bed together? I’d always fancied ox-like men. The kind who can grab your legs and flip you around, whose chests make solid thuds when tapped. Proportionate matches, you know. If I’m being honest, I suppose that dating bigger men made me feel more feminine. “Small” and “petite” are words I’d never used to describe my overly curvy and larger plus-size frame, but ensconced in the bear hug of a six-foot-four tank, I’d always managed to feel a bit dainty. And that, my friends, is an addictive feeling…
Which is why I caught myself off guard when, over a dangerously competitive game of Connect Four, I found myself curious as to what his kisses would be like? His brand of sexy was stealthy. And in seconds’ time I ran an Excel list through my head of every man I’d dated, sizing them up and comparing their strength to This Guy’s potential, all the while thinking to myself, “damn he’s cute, damn he’s cute…” And when we walked back to his car and he pressed me against the cold metal door I flung aside every worry and thought about nothing more than our really great kiss.
In bed I would run my hands along the span of his shoulder blades, which seemed so slender under my fingers. In one ear, a little devil chirped relentlessly, “What are you doing, Sarah, you’re too big for this guy, too big.” While my brain forged ahead with the self-assured knowledge that that was, frankly, bullshit – there was no such thing and, damn, how great was it that we could get so close to each other and I could never do that before! And though the worry crept back into my head intermittently, in the tangle of limbs I lost every single care, every fear and insecurity and every doubt that had threatened to pop into my head. My calves, my arms, my back. No part of me seemed off limits. And I let go and relished delicious inhibition. I Spin-and-Kissed without my feet leaving the ground and it felt simply remarkable.
Time passed and life continued. This Guy and I fell apart from one another and all things moved on. But I always kept tucked in the back of my head the realizations he had helped me to reaffirm. Affirmations that fortified me as I navigated the world of dating and bolstered my own sense of physical confidence and self assuredness.
First? Newsflash. Your lover knows how big you are. And he likes it. If he didn’t, he wouldn’t be there with you. He wouldn’t want to hold you and kiss you, touch your arms and your thighs. So, whatever your worry is about the difference between your bodies——- simply stop. The anxiety lives in your head. And you have the power to stop it dead in its tracks at any time.
Secondly, the Spin-and-Kiss is a state of mind. That magnificent, magical feeling when rhyme and reason cease to exist and for a few minutes you get beautifully lost in a kiss – that moment belongs to everyone. Small girls, big girls, thin girls, curvy girls. Gorgeous abandon lives in your head so get out of your own way. The actual chances you will truly squash your lover into uncomfortable oblivion when you settle onto their lap is pretty slim. The probability of tackling your partner into the hospital from the force of a running hug alone is, again, miniscule and minimal. So throw away the idea that your body should keep you from letting go. Your body is you, you are your body, and all of you deserves to feel bliss.
Time passed and life continued. After a challenging year, and a heavy summer, I found myself weighed down and encumbered. Joy lived just passed the reach of my fingertips, and I wanted it desperately. I craved reconnecting with the more free, more alive version of myself I had fallen away from. Stress. Life. Bad dates, sick parents, relocating, job worries had all left me lackluster. I had never felt farther away from a Spin-and-Kiss.
One day, I picked up the phone and texted This Guy on the offhand chance he’d be up for a hang-out. The answer was yes, and as I got dressed for our date I found myself feeling like Me again. Slinking in to a body-conscious dress that hugged my wide hips and my soft arms, my torso and full midsection and the waves of my ample backside, I felt a tingle inside. Sweeping a shock of pink across my lips and piling my hair into a bun, I started to smile deep inside my soul.
And when the door opened and his slender, lanky frame and head full of shaggy hair appeared, I knew what would be coming moments later. And just like that I ran, I laughed, I lost track of myself. That magical feeling when rhyme and reason ceases to exits. I threw my arms around his narrow waist and let go. I Spin-and-Kissed and, just like that, I let myself come back to life.
PS- Hey guys. If this blog touched you or moved you in some way, please chime in below in the comment section. I love to see your feelings but, I also know it totally helps others to know we are all experiencing the same thing. I appreciate each and every one of you!