WORDS JESSE SEIDEL
Today I chose not to wear a dress I love because it was too big for me. I got this beautiful, fun dress less than twelve months ago, and now, only sadness comes when I see it on my body. This pain feels too unique.
But not unique enough. As women, and just as people in this world, we are conditioned to celebrate weight loss. So people seem unable to understand my sadness.
I taught myself to love my body. I struggled. I worked. I beat myself up. I directed my anger at the system. Then I guilted myself into happiness. And somehow I won this war that we all have with ourselves.
I did not have a choice about whether or not to become a warrior. Born into a body that existed. But somehow I won, or I thought I did. But this fight continues. It always continues. With every day, meal, movement and breath, I remind myself to be happy.
My body changes. How I once learnt to see myself doesn’t match how I am, at this time. My legs look different. People I used to know tell me I’ve lost weight, as if it’s a compliment. It is not and will never be.
I now need to struggle again. I need to continue to fight for myself. For myself, however I appear, and for everyone else. Because no one can be free of this fight until everyone has won.
You would think now that I know the tactics and the battle formations, that it would be easier. But I’m running out of anger.
I was happy. But now I can’t wear the clothes that helped me feel happy.
And buying more will not make the pain disappear. Will not make the fighting stop.
Because it wasn’t about the dress. That was only a tool to show that I was stronger than I thought. That I loved myself.
Now I need to re-learn how to love myself as I change.
I wish this war had an ending. That it was possible for me to come out victorious. But I alone can’t solve this for the world. The best I can do is promise myself kindness, and stay strong.
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