By the time you are reading this I will have already landed in Ohio. Yep, Ohio. I don’t recall exactly how it all came together, but after making the acquaintance of one of this blog’s readers at the 2012 NAAFA conference in August, somehow it did. He had mentioned sharing some of the activism/political side of the conference with some peeps at a fat bash/party and how they were hungry for more information. As our conversation went on I heard myself volunteering to assist and be a voice for the fat activism I know and love. Flash to several months later and I’m in Ohio, Dayton/Englewood I believe, and nervously eager to get the good information to the people who want it. He and I are hosting a NAAFA table at the vendor fair for the Dayton BBW Blowout (I think it’s Mardi Gras themed).
I’m excited, but hesitantly so. This is the great unknown for me. To be surrounded by no doubt awesome fat people (and their admirers and allies), but who have little to no exposure to the politics?! Yikes! I hope I’m not in over my head here. I hope my preconceived notions of this sort of thing are completely wrong. I hope, at the very least, to inform or even touch (not literally, unless they ask nicely) just one person and I’d say that would be enough for me. I’m reminding myself that I have to stay open for the good things in the world to come, no matter how much bad stuff comes along the way. It’s a journey, not a destination.
I was practicing some visualizations of how this weekend could go. And my wild imagination ran free! I pictured myself giving an impromptu self-confidence workshop in my hotel room! (How amazeballs would that be?!?!) I pictured myself making important and loving connections with amazing fat people in parts of the country I’ve never seen or heard of. I imagined dancing the night away and swimming in the lovely indoor pool surrounded by proud fatties.
My anxiety is often (at least lately) a stubbornly powerful beast. I do my best to work through and keep on keepin’ on, but it’s always there, tapping my shoulder. *Sigh* I have witnessed some things lately that have given me great pause and have reflected on how I’m living my life and what I expose myself to. How I choose to have fun and whom I choose to surround myself with, these things matter so much more than I knew. It is because of this that I will no longer be attending or participating in some things that appear, on the outside, to be fat positive spaces.
This is the crux of my fat acceptance passion, you see. Many things appear a certain way but actually being there is an entirely different story. I cannot, in good conscience, continue to support (even passively so) things that are not safe or positive for the fat community.
I feel compelled to stay true to my heart and my own personal mission within the fat movement. I cannot allow the pressure or influence of others to sway me or steer me away from my path. It is an odd place I’m in right now, I know. Somehow though it feels right to be questioning it all and standing back and assessing the what and why and hows. Questioning in order to seek clarity and to be more informed is to me always the right thing to do. It is when I stop questioning that I know something is wrong. So I will do my best to stay open, always. And when things don’t feel right I will question, speak up and move on.
So, Hello Ohio! *Waves* I hope my anxieties are for not and that this “Blowout” leads to a brighter tomorrow for all.
“Anxiously Yours, OH”
- Equal Rights
- Fat Acceptance
- Oh Daddy!
- Rad Fatty Alert
- Tank Top Tuesday!!!
- Tell Me Tuesday
- TMI Tuesday