Everyday I hear messages from society about my fat body. I’m told that it’s a sign of moral failing, laziness, it’s a shortcoming, it’s unattractive, blah blah blah – the negative messages are incessant and ubiquitous.
I spent a lot of my life so intent on hating my body for not meeting the cultural stereotype of beauty that I never once appreciated it for what it did. Instead of defending the amazing body that helps me do every single thing that I do every moment of every day, I joined in the chorus of disapproval that suggested that I should hate my body and do ridiculous things to my fat. I sold my own body out to buy into an arbitrary social stereotype of beauty, and a modicum of begrudging approval that was contingent upon my keeping myself down so that my detractors didn’t have to bother doing it themselves.
If I’ve learned anything on my journey away from self-hatred, disordered eating, and compulsive exercise, it’s that my body deserves nothing less than my unconditional love and full-throated support. So to all of those who would suggest that my body is anything other than magnificent, or that I should I say this:
My fat body is far too valuable to be treated like a car whose worth is lowered because of some wear and tear. It’s far too astounding to be a metaphor or a political statement. It’s far too complicated to run on the same formula used to fuel a lawn mower. It is far too profound to be reduced to a ratio of weight and height. And it is far too amazing to be judged by anyone.
My fat body is not a representation of my failures, sins, or mistakes. My fat body is not an indication of my level of health or fitness, neither of which is any of your business anyway. My fat body is not up for public discussion, debate or judgment. My fat body is not a signal that I need help or input to make decisions about my health or life. My fat body is the constant companion that helps me do every single thing that I do every second of every day and it deserves respect and admiration.
If you are incapable of appreciating my body and treating it with respect and admiration that is your deficiency not mine; work on it or not, but I do not care. Nor am I interested in hearing your thoughts on the matter so, if you want to be around me, you are 100% responsible for doing whatever it takes to keep those thoughts to yourself. If you are incapable of doing that I will stop spending time with you – I spend my time with people who can treat me appropriately.
I will wield my beautiful fat body like a weapon. I will love it, I will care for it, I will move it, I will show it in public, I will viciously defend my body against anyone who seeks to classify it as anything but amazing. You’ve been warned – back off.
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