So I found out recently that my BMI qualifies me for getting the vaccine. I wasn’t chomping at the bit to get it because obvs we should be prioritizing elderly folks, essential workers and those with high-risk medical conditions, and I’m a 30-something who is generally ‘healthy’ and works from home. so. I was ready to wait my fucking turn. This news caught me off guard.

I didn’t know what to feel. So I just did a good ol’ social media real-talk brain-dump of the complexities I have been holding around my weight, my health, my body…

It’s weird to be such a vocal advocate for body-positivity, body-inclusivity, self-compassion, etc., critic of the ways that patriarchy, white supremacy, and capitalism try to trap up into hating ourselves to keep us oppressed… and also feel these feels. The way we internalize these systems of oppression isn’t rational. It’s literally in our bodies, in our muscle memory, in our histories. That pain can make us feel so alone and hopeless.

After I made this post, the outpour of love notes and people sharing their own journeys and struggles was so, so touching. It really shook the funk. I guess this is a silver lining of social media- when it actually does help us feel less isolated or alone in our struggles. And really, we can’t solve stuff like this on our own. We need each other, our liberation in interconnected. We need to be seen, to hear how others have overcome, to learn new perspectives and paradigms. Thinking that we have all the answers within ourselves is, too, a product of a capitalistic, individualistic society.

So, with their permission, I’d like to share some of the messages friends sent to me through the day. I want to capture this feeling and let it carry me when the burdens of having a body feel too heavy.

Not sure if this is helpful, so take it or leave it as desired. But X and Y really inspired me years ago with how they thought and talked about their bodies – about its abilities, not its appearance. X especially talked about strength goals or distance goals – “I want to be able to do [some activity] and that means training my body in this way”. I bet through dancing you’ve done similar – the splits take some fuckin work, you don’t just wake up one day w that ability. So maybe that can help w deciding what better means to you? Concrete things you want to do, and then what you need to do to get there? Right now I’m at “I need to run the Bolder Boulder” and “I need to climb at a M level if I’m gonna go on the cool hiking trips”. Anyway, hope this is helpful and if not ignore me.

Nothing needs to change for you to be loved. I and many others love you as you are <3

Saw your post about vaccine and obesity. I’m in the same boat about qualifying.

I’ve been doing a lot of work recently around body shame and health. I have some books and podcasts that have really helped me and would be happy to pass them along if you’re interested.

I also bought an online class about intuitive eating that I never started. If you’re interested,I could give you my login and we could do it together. I think I need an accountability partner to actually complete it.

I’ve been reading a lot from Health at Every Size (HAES) dietitians. BMI is a bullshit health indicator that was created based on the bodies of Anglo men. It’s not a reliable way to tell if you’re at more or less risk of certain diseases. It’s a racist system that tells us all of our bodies should be the same.

Anyway, your body is strong and beautiful and serving you. Let’s get vaccinated and hug it out.

Hey, I saw your post today, and I’ve been thinking about it. I’d be down to have a conversation about this topic and brainstorm together. Mainly about how to exercise and be mindful about food without having it be punitive and body shaming.

So much love and feels for this realness.

So hard to tease apart our own internal motivations from fucked up societal pressures. I agree with a lot of what has been said though. Get the vaccine! For once fatphobia is increasing access instead of denying access arbitrarily. There are lots of people who have been muddling through this same bullshit. I would love to dig into a book like The Body Is Not An Apology with book club together! Sending you so much love. Being a human is just so very hard.

 I think about this constantly. About how to love my body, move for strength and vigor and separate my health and fitness from my own idealized body shape. About how to dismantle fat phobia around me and within me, especially in more active communities. About how to convince a certain relatively skinny 11yo that being “not fat” doesn’t mean he’s healthy when he gets winded on a 30 minute dog walk. About how to feel great about my whole entire self.

Well, I want to lose weight and be more athletic but not out of fat-phobia or any kind of aesthetic issues, or looks, I just want to run faster! Be more agile, climb stuff, do more things. I get tired from even getting a pencil from the floor… you are beautiful as you are, focus on that other stuff, and maybe on the real physiological, medical stuff that matters. Taking care of our body is a duty, I don’t know if it can be rooted in pleasure, since most of the times it’s hard work, but that’s the spirit of Yoga in Buddhism, and the origin of greek word Gymnasion, a sense of responsability for self-care of the meat bags that carry our minds around. Consider reading something about Michel Foucault’s work on Care of the Self and the Will to Freedom.

I feel like a “like” button is so out of context, so I just want to drop a message of support. I see and hear you <3

Hugs! I’ve been trying to figure this out myself and have to say working with a HAES/intuitive eating dietitian has been a great experience so far. My therapist has always been great in helping me a ton too. For me personally, I’ve had a lot of unlearning to do.

With you so hard in this inquiry. And the irony of course is how IG and socials work where I see your gorgeous pics and do a compare/despair on my own fine self. And then realize we’re having similar thoughts. Grateful for this real tawk, needed it this morning and so with you!

You’re hot and you’re extremely loved.

This is the hard road, I’ve been on it a long time. I may not have the ideal seeming relationship with my body but I wanna share a few things I’ve learned along the way. The medical establishment oversimplifies a lot of complicated concepts because they think it makes them easier to understand. Don’t let your doctors pigeonhole or define you in this way, force them to use the real medical technology they have available to gauge your health in a meaningful way not summarize it or make assumptions based on their opinions of what a healthy body looks like.

when they want to talk about my weight I expected them to talk about what their tests of my blood sugar, cholesterol and other indicators of real trouble say. I force them to use real medicine not generalizations. I do not let them weigh me unless we are here to talk about my weight. They are consistently irritated to discover that when they look at my tests I’m a perfectly normal healthy person.

your body is your transport, it takes you the places you wanna go and does the fun cool things you wanna do. It has limitations, strengths and weaknesses just like all of us. You decide whenand how you want to push its boundaries to meet your needs. If you want it to be lighter or stronger or bigger that’s entirely between you and your body ??

our body is more like most people’s body than any body you see on a screen. The ones on the screen are intentionally designed to be unattainable, to seduce us to keep wanting something because they’re almost always selling something.

there is love in our world for all bodies, you know this from experience and you embody it your life and your amazing art and dance. You have a beautiful body that dances and hikes and fucks and loves ?

to quote Rebecca Solnit, the world has its share of lonely sad beauties, skinny perfect people who never found happiness despite meeting all societies expectations. You have a beautiful life, enjoy the shit out of that fucker. if you wanna lose weight enjoy that too. Do it cause you love your body and you wanna make it stronger, I promise you’ll be happy with any change you make long before any fucking medical establishment will stop using their narrow little definition of health to define you.

I feel this SO hard, my dear. Thanks for the valiant sharing. For me, it really comes in waves — I’m sorry you’re in a hard stretch of your own up and down. When I do feel like I’m on an exercise upswing that starts to feel healthfully ambiguous, I like to remind myself that it’s stronger i want, not skinnier.

Thank you friends, I love you all so, so much.

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