Authors: Tamara Pitelen
Tags: #Contemporary, #Romance, #Fiction, #Cupcakes, #Relationships, #Weight Loss, #Country, #Career, #Industry, #Crush, #Soap Star, #Television, #Soap Opera, #Secret, #Happiness, #BBW, #Insanity, #Heavy, #Story
The Year I Went Pear Shaped
A fat woman’s tale of love and lust
by Tamara Pitelen
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: The Year It Went Pear Shaped.
Chapter 2: Ramswell, pleased to meet you, meat to please you.
Chapter 3: The Perfect Man
Chapter 4: Alcodoms
Chapter 5: Food as a Drug
Chapter 6: ‘My Boyfriend has Sex with Fruit’
Chapter 7: Psychic landlady
Chapter 8: Bread is the devil’s work!
Chapter 9: Let’s Talk About Sex
Chapter 10: Bloody diets
Chapter 11: Gordo the Gardener
Chapter 12: Enter the Psychobitch
Chapter 13: Rebirth of the Bean Bag
Chapter 14: Ball Skills
Chapter 15: Attack of the Fat Monster
Chapter 16: Caught!
Chapter 17: Fake tits and navel gazing
Chapter 18: Butcher Lady
Chapter 19: Talking a lot of Tobsha
Chapter 20: A Right Nutter
Chapter 21: In the Mail
Chapter 22: Invite
Chapter 23: Waccy Baccy Dreamin’
Chapter 24: Botox and Lipo
Chapter 25: Who’s Coming to Dinner?
Chapter 26: Mad About the Boy
Chapter 27: Breaking Up With Brad
Chapter 28: Daddy’s Girl
Chapter 29: Crazy Cat Lady
Chapter 30: Fuzz in da House
Chapter 31: Nip and Tuck
Chapter 32: Where’s Brad?
Chapter 33: Letter to Daddy
Chapter 34: The Shrine
Chapter 35: Getting Rid of It
Chapter 36: Trading
Chapter 37: Up the Revolution
Chapter 38: Under the Knife
Chapter 39: The Wreckoning
Chapter 40: Shopping & Fucking up
Chapter 41: Off to the Doc’s
Chapter 42: ‘Just an inch of the sides thanks’
Chapter 43: Getting In
Chapter 44: First base
Chapter 45: Foreplay
Chapter 46: Reaching Climax
Chapter 47: Show Time!
Chapter 48: The Cavalry
Chapter 49: In the Wards
Chapter 50: Orifice Goss
Chapter 51: Captain Snooze
Chapter 52: Slap Down
Chapter 53: Break Another Little Piece of My Heart Now Baby
Chapter 54: Crunch Time
Chapter 55: Happily Ever After?
Copyright © Tamara Pitelen 2015
Tamara Pitelen has asserted her right to be identified as the author of this work.
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in any retrieval system or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the prior permission of the publishers.
This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, organisations, places and events other than those clearly in the public domain, are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, events or locales is entirely coincidental.
To Adrian. The love and light of my life.
Chapter 1: The Year I Went Pear Shaped.
It was the crate of pears in 1997 that finally pushed me over the edge.
Before the pears I’d weighed 50kgs, which is still a little on the chubby side for an 11 year old but I certainly wasn’t the fattest girl in my Year Seven class at Rosewarne High. Even so, those few extra kilos at that impressionable age, coupled with my Mother’s obsessive need to weigh everything she ate, may have still ended up paving the way for a life choked by yo-yo dieting and self-hate. A future filled with Goddess weekend workshops in the mountains where fat women dance around campfires and embrace their ‘real wimmin’s bodies’ before rushing home on Monday with the latest Lose Weight Now bestseller (‘no, this time it really will work!’) and a packet of chocolate biscuits. Trust me, it’s true. This contradiction is my life. And it started with the pears that turned up not long after my eleventh birthday twenty-two years ago.
It’s said you are what you eat and in my case the bottom-heavy fruit was definitely the shape of things to come. The pears marked a turning point. By 13 years old I was a rotund, pink, sweating lump of pre-pubescent blubber. Forget puppy fat, all cute and temporary. I had hippo lard and it wasn’t going anywhere. The final blow to any budding shoot of sexual confidence, were my milk-bottle thick glasses in huge blue frames (look, it was the eighties). They provided the double whammy of both hiding my eyes -- my one good feature -- and emphasising my frizzy, bright ginger hair. Frizzy because it was permed to within an inch of its life at the insistence of my well intentioned but misguided Mother who thought it made my face look slimmer. This is like saying that putting a curly wig on top of a bus will make it look like an MG convertible.
By Year Nine, I was the fattest person in my class and there was no pretending otherwise because every month Mr Lillibet, the limping gym teacher who unfortunately stood at five foot nothing, even in specially elevated trainers, and who also taught religious studies, would painstakingly weigh all 32 classmates of 9C one by one then write our names and weights in bold, red texta on a big chart that ran along the wall of the gymnasium.
Disregarding the laws of nature, Mr Lillibet wrote the heaviest at the top and the lightest at the bottom. The name that ran consistently along the bottom of the chart was Gordon Worsley, a squeak of a boy with white-blonde hair and long, toothpick legs that disappeared into the black hole of his baggy school shorts. His complete lack of an arse meant a thick leather belt had the job of preventing Gordon's shorts from being permanently around his ankles. An extra hole had been punched in the belt by Gordon's dad to make it small enough for his son’s tiny waist.
A freak of nature, Gordon had miraculously defied puberty until the age of 17 but then, in one explosive year, he dramatically grew nine inches both upwards and outwards and transformed in front of our very eyes into what was known back then as ‘such a spunk’. Gordon the Geek became Gordon the God.
Empowered by his unexpected promotion from skinny dweeb to total hunk, Gordon launched a frenzied one-man assault on virginity at Rosewarne High. Getting in as many as he could in case his sudden membership into the elite 'such a spunk" club was revoked as fast at had been granted.
He needn’t have worried though. These days, whenever I pull a sickie from my job as agony aunt on a glossy women’s magazine - usually about once a month - it’s so I can stay home to watch Gordon play the hunky, brooding Dr Rick Ramswell on my favourite soap of all time, Love on the Wards. When I don't pull a sickie, I videotape the show to watch at night. I sit on the sofa with a kitchen towel on my lap to catch the drool and when I’m not drooling, I’m kicking myself yet again for not getting on the receiving end of Gordon’s newfound manhood all those years ago. I was one of only two girls in our year that made it through to graduation without becoming a casualty of his shagging crusade. The other was Bella Jones, a willowy blonde who had perfect, caramel skin, a soft-as-ripe-peaches mouth, and a boyfriend called Jed Stard, who was captain of the Rosewarne High rugby league team and not a man to be messed with.
I, on the other hand, escaped deflowering because I was the size of a cow. Verified by the fact that it was my name, Darla Manners, that ran consistently along the top of Mr Lillibet’s weight chart, all the way from the climbing wall to the rope swing.
And it all started with the crate of ripe, fat pears that Mum and my new stepfather, Joseph, had brought home. They’d said we had to share them, which meant my little brother Jim and me, plus my two stepbrothers, the twins Thomas and Trevor. But none of the three boys could’ve cared less about fruit. At 16, Thomas and Trevor were surly, lip-curling, acne-infested teenagers who had their father’s bright red hair and white, white skin from which large orange freckles shone like dobs of flourescant paint. The twins were hardly ever home, preferring to skulk around the back of Jubilee Park with their loser friends and suck on cigarettes that they’d pinched from Joseph. So the pears were mine alone and everyday I’d run home from school to gorge myself.
I could chomp through up to seven of them between the hours of 4pm and 6pm, which was when Mum got home from work. While I was stuffing myself so fast that the sweet juice would stick to my face like sticky tears, Jim would be lying on his stomach in the games room, his chin in his hands, watching cartoons or playing computer games. Jim was eight years old then and spent his life in his own private world of Dungeons & Dragons. He generally preferred to ignore the rest of us unless dialogue was unavoidable. Naturally lean and tall, with curly brown hair, he was my polar opposite in every way. To my beloved little brother Jim, pears were just a fruit snack.
“Eat ‘em quick,” Joseph had said, ‘or they’ll go to waste!”
Joseph got angry if anything was wasted and I learnt quickly that getting him angry wasn’t a good idea. Born in Ireland, the youngest in a family of 13 children whose own father had died when Joseph was just two. His mother had struggled to make ends meet and Joseph told us stories about how he used to go to bed with bricks on his stomach to lessen the hunger, and how he’d had to eat raw potatoes because there was nothing else and his Mum didn’t have any wood to build a fire for cooking the potatoes, nor money to pay for electricity.
Mum met Joseph at a Greek restaurant. She’d been out with the women from her office for someone’s birthday and it was the first time she’d had a night out since my real Dad had left us.
Dad had been having an affair with Lesley Buxton, the make-up lady for our amateur theatre group. Every year, the group would put on a pantomime to raise money for charity and every year Jim and I would end up playing street urchins while Mum and Dad sung in the chorus. In the Year of the Affair, we were doing
and, in a bitter sweet irony, raising money for single Mums.
While I was on stage dancing around with a black pantyhose ponytail on my head pretending to be Chinese, Lesley was showing Dad just what she could do with hair tongs and a mascara wand which must’ve been pretty impressive because the pair of them were soon gone in a cloud of foundation powder.
That’s how Mum ended up a single woman out at a Greek restaurant eleven months later. She’d hauled out her sexiest red dress, which hadn’t seen daylight in months and pulled on her pre-divorce trademark stilettos for a night of ouzo shots and plate smashing. So when everyone got in a line to dance, and placed their hands on the shoulders of the people next to them, Mum found herself next to a strapping Irishman with a thick mop of shining, bouncing red hair and fire in his eyes. She was a rebound waiting to happen. They were married at a registry office six months later and told us kids the following week.
That was a couple of days before the pears arrived.
At first, I ate them straight from the crate but I soon began experimenting. I started by painting faces on them in chocolate sauce, or covering them entirely in whipped cream so they looked like small snowmen, then I’d add chocolate sprinkles for hair and two blue Smarties for eyes. After a while, I moved onto concoctions like grilled pears and cheese; pear kebabs with peanut butter sauce, and grated pears on Vegemite and toast.
Mum and Joseph had no idea that I ate almost the entire crate by myself. Over two weekends, I chomped and sucked my way through 20 to 30 and would still eat three normal meals. I was very good at creeping into the kitchen on tip-toes, hiding a few up the sleeves of my jumper and smuggling them back into the safety of the games room to eat in front of TV.
But I couldn’t get away with it completely. A couple of weeks after the crate came home, my weight rose to 54 kilos. And that was just the start. The fruit triggered something. It seemed to break the dam and all the fat that had been kept at bay came whooshing out to engulf me. Suddenly, I couldn’t stop eating. Over the next eight years I gained 40 kilos so at 19 years of age, I weighed 94kgs. It’s fair to say I was grossly, hugely, obscenely, morbidly fat.
And people did. But the person who told me the most was Joseph.
Chapter 2: Ramswell, pleased to meet you, meat to please you
Sex with my partner of five years has become boring. We average about once a fortnight; it lasts about ten minutes and I know the routine by heart. How can I spice things up? Chelsea, 27, NSW
There’s absolutely no need for sex to get dull no matter how long you’ve been together but, having said that, many couples come to me with the same complaint so you’re not alone. Like anything Chelsea, a good sex life needs to be worked at. You need to use your imagination! Make an effort. When I notice that bedroom antics with my partner of seven years are getting stale, I get home early to cook him dinner. No, it’s not exactly a move from the feminist handbook but I’ve found that steak and submission is good for triggering his inner caveman. That’s my man anyway, perhaps yours would prefer dominance? If so, make him eat off the floor while you’re flicking his balls with a tea towel. I open a bottle of red, dim the lights, get the candles out, burn some sexy essential oils and put on some mood music. Then, I greet him at the door wearing nothing but a French maid’s apron and fuck-me stilettos whilst wielding a large black dildo in a manner that could only be called provocative. Then see what happens. Have fun and good luck Chelsea.
“Oh god!” wailed Katerina to anyone who’d listen. “The size six is too tight! I think I need the eight! I can’t believe it. Oh god, my arse is so huge, I can’t stand it! It’s not fair!” she whined, stamping her Kurt Geiger stiletto on the carpeted office floor of Lush! Magazine. “Maybe Sass & Bide are sizing their clothes too small, I mean, there’s so no way I’m a size eight. I was saying to Hugo just last night actually, I’ve been a perfect size six for three years and I just don’t understand why some women have so much trouble with their weight, it’s really just about self-discipline. And you know what Hugo said…?”
Katerina continued despite the lack of interest from her colleagues.
“…he said I’ve got the best body of any of his past girlfriends. He’s so sweet isn’t he? It makes getting to the gym every morning at 4.30 in the morning all worth it! That was just before his Mother called. I get on sooo well with his mother, she’s such angel, she was ringing to invite us to his father’s 60th at The Royal Pavilion next month. It’s going to be a huge party! The Primeminister is going to be there. Actually, did I tell you that Hugo played squash with Keanu Reeves a couple of months ago? Hughie beat him of course, he's got a killer backhand…”
“Katerina!” cried Naomi the deputy editor, a former newspaper journalist with a tongue that could grate Camembert.
“When you’ve finished trying on half the gear in the fashion cupboard, could you get on to the Seven Sexy Things to do with your Mouth feature? I need it by 5pm.”
“Yeah, I’ve pretty much finished it Nomes,” Kat said, peeling the designer jeans off her tiny bottom. “I was just waiting for that sex therapist to get back to me with a quote about her best blowjob tip. She gave us that one about ice-cubes but Arabella read it in Cosmo last month.”
“Ok fine, just make sure she doesn’t palm you off with that one about alternating between a popsicle and peppermint tea, if I had a dollar for every time I’d read that, I’d could’ve retired from this glossy fish ‘n chip wrapping years ago.
“And how are you going Darla?” asked Naomi, turning her steely grey eyes in my direction. “When can I get your pearls of wisdom for this month’s crop of unlucky -in-love readers?”
“I’m just finishing up now. I wasn’t sure what to tell the devout Catholic woman who’s still a virgin at 28 and going insane with frustration.”
“God, why doesn’t she just do what the rest of us do? Get so drunk that she’d have sex with a bowl of porridge if it bought her a vodka, lime soda?”
“Yeah, well, I don’t think her religious leanings allow her the luxury of turning to binge-drinking like the rest of us do so I decided to go with the old ‘don’t-worry-it’ll-happen-you’re-special-and-when-it-does-you’ll-be-glad-you-waited’ bollocks. Do you think I should chuck in the usual line about joining clubs and night classes as well?”
“No, just leave it as a pep talk, what else can you tell the poor cow? I can’t imagine her meeting too many sexed-up lovemeisters down at bible appreciation classes. But then again, who knows what goes on down there? Lordy, imagine being a virgin at 28! I’ll bet she can’t walk past a zucchini without shaking.”