Risk Management

In this episode, Marianne and I have a philosophical discussion about taking chances and living self-acceptance every single day. If it sounds sort of new-agey and earnest, that’s because it is!

One Response to “Risk Management”

  1. Carahe Says:

    Ha! The dance class thing! I am a big fat fattie with an additional sort of autoimmune situation. I am also an avid, 3 classes a week, several hours per day ballet dancer.

    At my academy, not only does the secretary call me “hard core”, she sends timid adult potential beginners to me so I can recruit them for classes. So, yeah, I have tons of enthusiasm for the ballet. And the reason that I am able to do that is because my teacher is aware of both my fatness and my disorder, and when I get deathly ill, or sorta dizzy, or even just stymied by parts of my body that can’t physically cooperate with the particular movements or postures I’m asking of it, she is able to work with me on a totally practical, non-judgmental level to rest, adjust, whatever and assess whether it is a fatness issue or an illness issue.

    She checks that I have eaten something in appropriate proximity to taking class, because she knows that dancing requires fuel. She not only presumes that I am taking care of my body/self, she is actively pro-self-care-taking. She notices my abilities and faults in conjunction with the abilities I have displayed in previous classes AND with the progress of the rest of the class. She has openly acknowledged that my extension is better than most of the rest of the regulars, but my releves’ are worse (etc.). What I’m saying is, she judges me on an athletic level, like a regular person. A regular person whose regular self happens to be fat-sized.

    And yet. She still (very rarely, but occasionally) congratulates me on the weight I have lost (I haven’t). I have explained that I do the fat activism, and that I like my body the size and shape that it is, and I have tons of evidence that we both agree that I am as healthy as it is humanly possible to be (given the disorder). She has never asked/suggested that I do more in terms of exercise/diet, because we both know that there isn’t more I can or should be doing. And I’ve been with this teacher for long enough that we both know that this is the way my body is.

    But I think that somehow, the losing weight/being thin thing (meme?) is so psychologically strong that it has become incorporated into her sense of what healthy IS despite her open and wholehearted acceptance/understanding that it doesn’t GET healthier than who and what and where I am.

    I have no answers for this, except to think that maybe my sheer visible insistence on being a fat ballet dancer counts towards my activism points for showing (the supportive/delightful ladies and dudes in my classes AND my awesome teachers)not just the joyful active fatty thing, but the beautiful, artistic, VALID active fatty?

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