March 2, 2017, 9:41 p.m.
I fear that I am the elephant
And not because of the majestic size of my body, or the beautiful wrinkles of my skin
But the elephant in the room
The elephant that is an advocate for body positivity who still has anxiety attacks over Christmas dinner
The elephant that is preaching that eating disorders do not discriminate
While the whiteness of my skin
Plays into the stereotype that I fight to erase
Shrinking is not the solution
It is time to nurture
To fuel this body so that I can not only stand up
But have the energy to step aside as well
I have been taught to hate it
I have been told that it is not small enough, tight enough, pretty enough
But what is really wrong with it is what it symbolizes
Oppression, fear, colonization
It is not this flesh that has committed these acts
But it represents
No matter how small it is, it will still remain powerful in ways that I can never fully grasp
The privilege to speak, to walk down the street, and most of all
To fight without being labeled as violent
This is privilege, and despite the number on the scale or the amount of fat I can squish between my fingers
My body is powerful
I can use this power for good.
I can use it to create space for those who do not feel safe
Those who could not possibly have an eating disorder because it’s “a white girl’s disease”
But pushing past these walls is not easy, and the elephant cannot do it on five peanuts a day
So here’s to hope
Here’s to talking about the giant wrinkly elephant in the room
Here’s to eye contact, and connection, and laughter, and empathy
Here’s to pushing for policy that is inclusive
Here’s to moving past the comfort of standing still
We can do so much better than that
The author of this poem has requested to keep their identity anonymous.
April 27, 2018, 2:58 p.m.
Feb. 23, 2018, 2:13 p.m.
Feb. 1, 2018, 8:07 p.m.