Living While Fat 2
“My body is a cage. My body is a cage of my own making. I am still trying to figure my way out of it. I have been trying to figure a way out of it for more than twenty years.”
"I don’t want to change who I am. I want to change how I look. On my better days, when I feel up to the fight, I want to change how this world responds to how I look because intellectually I know my body is not the real problem."
"When people try to shame me for being fat, I feel rage. I get stubborn. I want to make myself fatter to spite the shamers, even though the only person I would really be spiting is myself."
- Roxanne Gay, Hunger
I don’t want to tell anyone how good it feels to be a little lighter. I don't want to complain about having to buy new clothes or be uncomfortable.
Partly because I never want to talk about my body again. Somewhat because I feel I don't want to congratulate my weight loss: Although society says “good fats” should be constantly trying to lose weight, “good bopo babes” reject the notion that losing weight on purpose is something to be celebrated. Partially because I don't want people to think (or think I think) that I'm somehow "more worthy" or "better" because of this weight loss. I love the woman I was plus pounds a go and minus pounds a go, I just really like myself best when I'm not the most depressed.
And that's the point I guess: I didn’t lose it on purpose really. I'm purposely moving my body more, but it's less about the state of my body and more about the state of my mind. When I'm walking, talking to Myke, I'm completely present. Sometimes in the conversation, often in the noise of the birds, ripples of the water, trembling of the leaves in the breeze. When I'm walking alone, the way my feet move mindlessly, my brain occupied with the voice of Florence, Maggie, Carole. Taking my headphones out when I reach the woods, listening to the different kind of loudness in the woods and I'm out of breath, but I want to hear the birds. But all people want to talk about is "you look so good, like you've lost weight." "You've been going outside so much and boy, can you tell." And sometimes, just sometimes, I get a little problematic and let John remind me that actually "I'm bigger than my body gives me credit for."
Vaccinated and getting out a little more now, I leave my house not feeling like a fat positive bopo queen, but a woman tired of discussing her body. Some days, I wish I could be an orb, an entity. I wish to not be perceived in a physical way. I wish to be a disembodied voice on the phone. On my worst days, I decide to place my worth in what I ate, how much I moved, and wonder again if I could just cut this chunk of my tummy, arm wing, back roll, leg fat off. Other days, I'm filled with spite. I want to scream loudly how fat I am and how worthy of respect and love and no, I don't want to be treated better, I just want to be treated the same.