Hi, all. First of all, I apologize for my scarcity. A lot’s been going on in Big Liberty-land, some of it good, some of it not-so-good, and lots with potential to go either way.
I don’t usually blog about personals, but fat acceptance has been getting awfully personal for me, lately. It’s been on display in my writing, walking around with me in a suit at a high-powered conference in Manhattan, and making new friends. It’s there when I wake up, and tucks me in at night.
I say ‘fat acceptance’ rather than ‘fat’ because in Western Society you can’t just be ‘fat’ and leave it at that; fat’s something you are required to accept or not, seen as a choice by most, and used to your detriment in nearly every area of life. Want to date? You better make sure to tell them you’re fat, or risk being labeled as a con-artist of the flab (conflab?). Want that new job? Better hope they guy/lady who interviews you isn’t a biased fuck. Want to address that chronic pain in your hip? Better have your HAES gun locked-and-loaded, in the nearly-inevitable circumstance your fat is blamed for your ailment, or the sacrifice of which is suggested for the future of your health.
On that note, please read Red3’s post about the medicalized death-threats constantly leveled at fat people and parents of fat children. It’s superb.
So I walk and wander, accompanied by my fat acceptance. What choice do I have? Before finding fat acceptance, I was chained to fatphobia for most of my life. Fatphobia is a vicious companion, turning one against others and oneself, in need of constant feeding, and always pooping on the good rug.
Fatphobia damaged me: it was in the fists of the kids that beat me on the playground; it was in the words of family who wanted me to shrink for ‘my own good;’ it was in the tortuous loops round the college campus as I worked off no food, hopped up on diet pills; it’s in the flutter in my chest, the silent echo of how far I was willing to go to be the woman I thought everyone wanted me to be.
Fatphobia damaged others: sweet boys suffering, turned down because I couldn’t see myself as attractive; family disappointed, unable to see past this chance shell to the cultivated promise beneath; husband wounded, wishing only that his wife wouldn’t cry in frustration as she wonders whether she’s getting passed up for promotion because of her size.
So I keep fat acceptance close. This fourth year of my journey is no easier than the first, but far easier than navigating the briar patch of self-hate. Lots of FA bloggers have come and gone in the meantime, others have slowed their posting or sped up, and there are many new faces. We are doing well; we are changing lives; our message is getting through. We must continue. And keep fat acceptance close to you, when you’re busy and can’t find time to write. I know I will.