Category Archives: ghana

[cranky] CFF manifesto (in progress)

CFF became a place for me to understand that there is more than fat shaming — there is skinny shaming too, and that I’ve participated in it. Today, I do post mostly about fat shaming, but I make a point of never skinny shaming.

gabourey sidibe

I’ve also reflected a lot on how I’ve felt fat since probably the age of 9 or 10. I hit puberty early (period came at age 10) so I was extra tall and hairy early. I’ve always had wide shoulders, and by 6th grade I was a 36C. I was always bigger than every other girl, and most of the guys. I told myself constantly that I was fat. Middle school (the years of self hate, mean girls, exploring make up, leg shaving, girl on girl hate…) only made my fat feel fatter.
Since then I’ve realized that almost all of us felt fat (regardless of how little we may have weighed). I want this page to be a community in which everyone who has ever felt fat — ever — to feel safe and realize that we must love our bodies. Even if you want to change your body (weight, gender, tattoos, clothes) you have to start by loving your body.

You only get one body.

strong women

Every day when I check CFF I’m reminded that I MUST love my wonderfully imperfect body. I am reminded the true meaning and importance of intersectionality, looking through comments and looking at all of the countries and cities the “likes” originate from.

This then reminds me that all over the world fat means different things. When I was in Ghana fat was a good thing (although personally traumatic for the first six weeks). We must accept our bodies, love our bodies, and remember that maybe it’s your society that does not “approve” of your body — but it’s not the world that does not approve.
she dares to take up space

I love messages from other CFFs, and posts shared on the wall. It helps open my eyes more to the world outside of my little ass-backwards southern city.

I somehow was incredibly sheltered from the fact that men have body image issues as well. Having CFF really opened my eyes to this, and I’ve worked my hardest to include all genders in body image conversations. My own father’s body image problems have also been eye opening. He weighs much less than me, but is desperate to lose 20 pounds. His doctor hasn’t asked him to lose weight, it’s just for him and the man he sees in the mirror. While I don’t understand it, I still have to respect him.

pretty

Always a work in progress, respect and choice are essential to feminism.

[cranky] stupid facebook, updated

Facebook banned me from posting for 24 hours because I posted “abusive” photos — my first two profile pictures from nearly a year and a half ago. So, of course, I’m sharing them here:

 
this is the back of my head. you can also see two of my many “little sisters” in the village I lived in in Ghana. the picture was taken by another of my little sisters (who is a damn good cook, in case you were wondering)
 
 
nudity?! trees don’t wear clothes
 
 
Tuesday evening I received a 12 hour ban. (the page is set up so that you have to be 17+ to access or view anything, so shouldn’t it be okay to have sex-positive posts and jokes?)
 


[fat] good news!

Shouldn’t have been so hard on myself last night– I weighed myself, finally, and after 7 tries I was confident that I had lost 3.5 pounds. Honestly, that’s the most weight I’ve lost in one week since I had Typhoid Fever last May.

Last week’s goal of walking 10,000 steps a day totally failed. I got to like 7,000ish a day… at least its a start, right? I’m really trying to hold onto the 8 glasses of water a day from the first week. Naturally it means chugging water in the evening after drinking coffee all day… but I’m hydrated. Don’t burst my bubble.

[fat] and sad

Its the end of my second week on weight watchers, and I’m afraid to weigh myself. I haven’t exceeded my points for the week, and I haven’t really eaten the last two days. I’ve bizarrely not been interested in food at all. If only I could keep this up during the week and not just my lazy weekends.

I feel like my weight will have increased, for absolutely no reason. It seems like that’s always the way my body works. Tonight I’ve been dwelling on Ghana, and last May when I was 50 pounds less than I am now. (Granted, I did have typhoid fever at the time, but it was 50 pounds less than today)

Maybe if I get on the scale it will have gone up. Could I blame it on my wet hair? Was I standing on the scale differently? Maybe my weight has gone down. I almost want to laugh at myself, I feel like this diet is just a trick for maintaining my weight because I will never drop any weight. I swear I’d throw myself a party at 20 pounds lost, I’d have my ass below 200.

YENKO NKOAA, by Eduwoji

 

This is my absolute favorite song from studying abroad in Ghana. I spent the month of April 2011 doing dance research in a small village near where this was filmed, Klikor-Agbozume. (You have to drive through Sogakope where this was filmed to get to Agbozume.) I spent the evenings of my research time drinking Star, a local beer, and dancing in the village “spot” (bar) whenever we had electricity for music. Yenko Nkoaa was on every night that we had electricity, usually several times during the night. I always wore handmade bright new dresses with African prints to go dancing with my translator, and never once wore a bra– just like every other woman in the village. Klikor will always remain in my heart, and shape the way that I feel about my body.