I'm not sure how to even start the internal conversations I want to have about my body. I always seem to be on the defensive, trying to prove myself one way or another. I guess it comes with the territory of being fat, being female, and a whole host of things that put me in a constant war in which my body is weapon, territory and battleground, usually all at once.
I've been thinking about a lot of things around this; about why I feel so strongly that my arms up to at least my elbows, and my whole legs, should be covered - and this isn't any kind of religious or moral principle, and I'm pretty sure it's not a phobia or an anxiety thing, it just is. I've been thinking about my utter lack of awareness, where I've done things like stood on a nail and known I was in pain but had no idea which part of the body the pain was in, and what this says about my relationship with my body.
If you read my posts regularly you'll realise that I tend to give a lot of examples with no real point. If there is a point in this it's that my body and the way I think about it are really fucking complicated. I'm not sure if it's any more complicated than anyone else's because hey, half my point (yes, I've gone from no real point to between 0.5 and 1.5 points, what of it?) is that I don't tend to express this often. And lately I've been finding that a lot of the fat acceptance/HAES type models that have done so much to change - arguably save - my life, really limiting.
I understand why people find it so important to talk about bodies as neutral - sometimes it's a shorthand for morally neutral, which I utterly agree with - and sometimes it's creating a space away from the constant shit about how seemingly everything isn't acceptable. And I understand why people want to celebrate them, as a reaction against the constant shit. And I understand that many people simply feel that their bodies are neutral, or awesome and something to be celebrated.
Bodies as neutral is a good starting point. But for me my body carries a lot of history, the evidence, both positive and negative, of a lot of my life, in all kinds of different ways. I gained a lot of weight in my teens dues to medical error - and not the sort of "crap I measured out the wrong dose" error that we all understand how we could make, but a series with a deep institutional basis, a whole heap of prejudice, and an utter disrespect for the autonomy of, and unwillingness to listen to, a teenage girl who didn't interact with them as teenage girls should. There have been other, unpleasant factors outside my control that have influenced my weight as well.
I'm trying to work out a way to acknowledge this. To acknowledge the physical effects of having bodily autonomy removed without going back to hating my body. To talk about this in appropriate spaces without coming across as being a good fatty because I have an excuse, unlike everyone else (I very much doubt I'd have been skinny anyway, but this isn't the point). I'm not even sure there is a way, in the context I live in, to acknowledge the link between my body and hurt without buying into a societal disapproval directed at myself, but it's an attempt I'm beginning to make anyway.