If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know I’ve got baggage. Like, cargo planes of it. Last night, I mentioned the need to share our stories, to put our authentic voices out in the world. So I’m going to do that now, because I know other people are experiencing the same issue…
So, last night we were given an award from Rainbow Heritage, an organization here in Nottingham that’s all about supporting the LGBTQ community and celebrating the people who have done work in the community each year. It’s a fabulous organization that’s tied into the LGBTQ Nottingham Switchboard, which is an amazing resource for people who need to reach out and find others in the community. I used it when I first moved to Nottingham to find writing organizations where us queer folk were welcome.
They nominated us for an award for two things: 1. for doing our memoir projects with various LGBTQ groups in the city, including over 50s, LGBTQ youth, and trans kids. And we’re in the midst of a large scale project now in conjunction with the local museum and the British Museum. 2. for the annual LGBTQ book festival we’ve been running since 2009 (making this our 10th anniversary), that celebrates queer fiction and brings together authors and readers from all over the place.
Very cool, right?
So what was I stressing about like a cat with its tail smoldering? What I was going to wear that didn’t make me look fat. I tried on various outfits, and…fat. FAT.
I talked it through with my wife, and I said that I knew, logically, that I wasn’t undeserving of the award just because I’m fat. I mean, I’d never look at another big girl and think that, so why would I think it about myself? And yet…
We stood on stage, took the obligatory photo, I said some things (and left things out, god damn it), and we sat back down. And I thought, I wish I wasn’t so fat and ugly. I felt like a lace-wrapped roly-poly bug, but without the cute acrobatic-ness.
I go to the gym when I can. I have Fibro, so there are days I’m not up to it. I don’t eat terribly, for the most part. I’m just…big. And maybe now that I’m in my 40s I have to accept that I simply need to keep being healthy (gym, veggies, etc) and accept that my body is now solidly in middle-aged Latina mom territory. That this is the way I’m built. So be it.
I think this is my next piece of baggage to unpack. I’m tired of lugging it around.