Stepping into 2017 like a Fat Babe does

 

2016 You.Did.Not.Break.Us.

(me unleashing the fuschia sparkle on new years eve and Princess Leia keeping it motherfucking real. RIP.)

Babes welcome to 2017. We made it through what was, for many of us, a shit-box of a year. Box after box, babes, just full of shit. We all just kept unpacking it and unpacking it. But we are here, the last carton full of crap has been delivered and, if you are reading this, you have hopefully emerged unscathed. I feel like a goddamn warrior slowly standing the fuck up after a serious, didn’t know if I would make it, battle. 2016 babes, she was a doozy. For me personally, for nearly everyone I know, my community at large, and the planet, specifically. For real, babes, 2016 unleashed a bag of dicks upon humanity and I for one am ready to put those dicks back where they belong: on the internet quietly jerking off to shit they find on Reddit.

And now here we are in 2017. ‘Who knows what this year will hold’ feels pretty goddamn ok to me. I’m not gonna lie I get wooed by a new year. Feels like the world is full of possibility and that suits me. That said, I’m not really a fat babe who waxes philosophical about the new year, and goal setting, and intentionality. I’m down for however my fellow fats want to roll, and I’m not gonna lie, I get inspired by that shit all the time,  but y’all I’m still wearing my armour and I’m hopped up on the adrenaline rush of getting through 2016, and it just seems like maybe a bitchy, blaspheming, Fat Babe in full armour is just what we need to get through the fuckery that is January. I mean, babes, it is a month like none other for the spewing of body hating nonsense. It is the month where collectively the universe does that thing that I hate the most about office lunch rooms: atoning for the fun you had on the weekend by punishing yourself come Monday. Fuck. No.

Welcome to January. Had fun over the holidays? Saw people you love? Ate seconds at turkey dinner? Went out drinking with friends? Got sick by eating multiple boxes of tofifee? You didn’t think you could get away with just enjoying life did you? DID YOU? Don’t worry, January is here to disabuse you of that notion. January is here to say natural consequences are not enough, that you should be mixing that hangover with a hearty dose of shame. January is here to sell you lies about your body. January is here to distract you from the fact that we have some serious organizing to do in order to deal with the aftermath of 2016.  January is the fun police. January is a punk ass mother fucker and I have no time for that. So here I am, feeling ballsy as fuck for getting through 2016, and I think Ill just ride that feeling a little goddamn longer. Cause babes, we can gently, lovingly, and intentionally work our way through January by giving zero fucks about what she has to offer.

image2
Looking hot as fuck while giving exactly none.

 

6 ways to give zero fucks about January, her evil twin Fatphobia, and her kid sister, Capitalism

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Don’t drink the mother fucking Kool-Aid– do not be fooled. January is not about making changes. It is about making us feel so shitty that we buy stuff/memberships we are not actually gonna use. Once the ‘joyful xmas/xmas frenzy’ marketing strategy of December is behind us, capitalism switches gears to bring us the ol ‘buckle down/you are the worst’ strategy for January. In the same way that December manipulates, so too does January. And it is sneaky and, unfortunately, a part of the collective consciousness. It is at the dinner table, in our workplaces, and cozily wrapped in our hearts and minds. We confuse naming our hopes and desires for the year with guilt and the feeling that we have somehow cheated and must atone. We need to slow down that thinking to give it a closer look. Cause when we really think about it, we know what is real. We know that behaviour change is complicated and isn’t magically successful just because the year turned over. That is clearly bananas. I go to the gym every damn day and January is full of people ‘making a change’, but y’all, come February it is back to regulars. January is not about behaviour change, it is, like always, about consumption and capitalism. Babes, lets not get sucker punched by some gym trying to sell us a boxing class, yeah?
  2. Make space – making space for reflection, goals, and hopes for the new year is a bomb ass thing to do – in January or when the fuck ever. Fat Babes, we deserve to take a minute, catch our breath and think about what we are proud of, what we wish we could do more of, and how we want to move in the world. So feel free to make some space in the world for yourself. Space that allows you to gently and kindly celebrate who you are and who the fuck you want to be. Sit down with a coffee, or tea, or whatever you drink, and think about how you honoured yourself last year and what you want to do to honour yourself this year. It may be cheesy as fuck but that doesn’t mean it isn’t good for you.
  3. Take space- Babes, remind yourself of why you are worth rejecting the resolution, you are goddamn enough. Ima just say that again for the hell of it. You.Are.Enough. No one has the right to tell you to change, to suggest you improve, to tell you what would make you better. You are the only one who can do that for yourself. And only if you goddamn want to. So take space back from the toxic lunchroom chit chat, don’t attend family dinners that make you feel bad for eating, and go dark on social media if your feeds are all about body hating and diet talk. Resolve to take that space back for yourself. Go ahead. You deserve it.
  4. Remember to breathe – Babes, if you had asked me 10 years ago if I would ever consider mindfulness to manage my anxiety, and my constant state of being emotionally over stimulated, I would have told you to take your junk science and get the hell out of my house. Today I can say that I was deeply wrong and for that I am sorry. If I can do nothing else but save other cranky dirt bags the time it took me to get over myself and try a thing that is super far outside my comfort zone, my work on this planet will be done. Look I get it. It is a stretch, a different way to heal from what many of us have been taught. And also, it seems kind of like the ol ‘take a bath and go for walks’ strategy to manage the deep traumatic ache of the planet. I mean exactly how many baths must one fat babe have to get rid of rape culture, hmmmmm? Self-care practices ain’t gonna convince brahs to change a damn thing. But babes, my logic was flawed and my attitude was shitty. And really, where has cynicism and detached irony got us anyways? If we are gonna be tackling this shit head on, if we are going to stand firm, if we are gonna protect each other, we need to breathe. We need those moments to store up a little flicker of energy and hope here and there. So whether it is a bath, or a walk, or shaking your ass on the dance floor, remember that you are storing up these tiny breaks so that you can face the world with an open heart and kindness while giving a total of zero fucks. Taking a breath to be in the present, to just be alive, and feel the wonder of that, is not twee (or like maybe just a little twee). It is living. I even have a fucking app that guides me through the whole practice of mindfulness. That is how hard-core I am now. An app. So whatever your version of breathing is, however you take space for yourself to be alive in your body do that now, cause we need it this time of year.
  5. Move your body – Yall just cause I am opposed to having exercise sold to me under the guise of self-improvement/body hatred doesn’t mean I don’t love getting sweaty. I love exercise for my body, but mostly to quiet my mind. I even love going to the gym (even with all of the MANY flaws of gym culture). I am so here for fat babes moving their bodies in ways that feel fun and empowering. If you can find a way to move your body in a way that celebrates it, then for shit sakes, go forth and move.
  6. Eliminate diet talk- I did this for myself years ago and it is the total best. I started telling the people around me that I didn’t want to hear about diets or the ways they hate their body. I was ruthless in that I was all ‘look you can either stop talking about it around me or we can’t be friends. It is that important to me.’ I reminded my people that they can be celebrated for their diet talk by nearly EVERYONE ELSE IN THE WORLD so surely they could just not around me. It worked. I had maybe one post on my feed about losing weight this January. That’s it. Feels good. Maybe that should be the resolution, y’all.

Babes, it turns out we can step into new things, and care about ourselves in loving ways, and swear like a sailor, and shit talk the clusterfuck that is January, and fight the fucking shitstorm of douchbaggery. From where I’m sitting, 2017 should have literally nothing to do with diets and weight-loss workouts and EVERYTHING to do with loving our selves in a deep and real and fucking righteous way, and then getting out there to fight the misogyny, racism, white supremacy, and other tomfuckery that is exploding extra all over North America. If our resolutions have nothing to do with fighting oppression and everything to do with fighting our bodies, well, babes, we are doing it all wrong. Don’t let vapid resolutions take up any brain space just cause your co-worker/sister-in-law/auntie/bestie is making bad choices. Make your body a safe and cherished place to come home to. Cause babes, it’s a riots not diets kinda year. Welcome to 2017.

image1-1

Smooches.

 

Dreaming of Safe Gyms like a Fat Babe does.

lockers

Babes. Hey. So, if you have been keeping up with my blog life from the start you know that I have been working out at my local gym now for a few years. And in a lot of ways it is the total best thing in my life. I am there easily 4 times a week. They know my name which is charming as fuck. I do cardio and recently, a smidge of circuit training. I am still fat. I go to the gym cause moving my body and getting sweaty makes me less crazy and it feels good. I do not have a weight loss goal connected to my working out, nor do I ever intend to. This makes me a fucking unicorn in the world of gyms and muscle heads. I am usually super fine with my gym role as Our Lady Of Perpetual Fatness, but lately I have noticed that I am developing a bitter resentment towards gym culture. I mean not to go all conspiracy theorist on all y’all but I am basically sure that gym culture is all built on massive lies that are messing with me and my fellow fats. No, fer real.

And the biggest lie is this: HEY! GUYS! GYMS ARE FOR EVERYONE!!

Bull to the motherfucking shit.

Gyms are deeply and committedly not for fat people. From the physical space to the attitudes that abound. Sure there are fat people in gyms, but we are having to hold down space for ourselves on the regular and it ain’t always easy. More importantly we shouldn’t have to steel ourselves to use a goddamn elliptical machine. The truth is this: Fat people have to do about a million times more emotional prep work just to walk through the fucking door of a place that is supposedly for everyone. So I have been feeling like I deserve the mother load of cookies for going as often as I do. And yes, I mean both actual cookies that I can eat and the righteous cookies that feed my soul. What can I say, babes, I want it all.

Instead this is what I and my fellow fat people get from gyms:

NO FATS NO FEMMES

Not a single staff person who works in the actual gym portion of the Y looks like me. Now I know for a fact that there are fat people who do gym shit for a living (or they would if we could lose our craptacular attitude about fat) so why are my people never represented? Hmmmmmm? If we know that dieting is a failed experiment and weight maintenance is what all the kinesiology academics are talking about as a realistic goal, then why can’t fat babes see other fat babes as boss fat trainers? I mean babes really, its science. And while there are some people working the ‘front of house’ who look like they are not hard core gym bunnies, they are most certainly not fat. At least not in the conventional sense (like they probs think they are fat, but they are tops a size large in straight sizes).

arriving-at-the-gym
I am squarely in the MO FATS MO FEMMES camp. Obvi.

PETITE POWERLIFTING ONLY

Nary a fat person working out on the free weights and weight training equipment. This is what is giving me the most rage cause I wanna use that stuff – I want to learn to power lift that shit. And I will, but currently the intimidation factor is greater than my rage fueled sense of fat babe entitlement. Look, maybe all those buff people are the sweetest in the world (the trainer friend that I know and love is – she just wants everyone to feel good and work it out – bless her), but I don’t know for sure and gym culture means I am way too intimidated to risk it.  Cause gym culture is super clear on who should be lifting shit and it ain’t me. We generally have two groups of people at the gym feeling entitled to dead lift: 1. ripped motherfuckers (as in ‘holy shit you are a ripped motherfucker). 2.brahs (as in ‘brah! spot me while I bench press the shit out of this weight). Surprise. Not fat people. Babes, I’m not saying ripped motherfuckers and brahs should not have access to equipment – of course they should, but do they have to get all of it?

gym-outfit
I mean wouldn’t you want this babe to get up in your powerlifting?

PRETENDING WE ARE NOT FAT

PSSST, babes. Its not a secret, amiright? Pretending like all bodies have the same workout needs and that we are all intimidated by gyms in the same way is just as bad as telling me I shouldn’t even bother. Yesterday, for instance, I watched as a very skinny gym attendant oriented a very nervous looking fat couple to the gym. I could feel their unease as they were shown around by a well-meaning, but totally ill equipped gym babe. She was super friendly and I heard her say ‘with a membership you have access to all of this equipment!!!’  All I could do was smile encouragingly at them while sweat poured off all of us. Now obviously I don’t know what was going through their minds, so let me just spell out how this experience has played out for this fat babe at the gym, yeah?

Here are the pressing questions I have had as I was oriented to a new gym  – will I be able to use the equipment as a fat person? Will I fit? Why are the cardio machines squished so close together? Will I fit? Can I take a class and keep up? Are there other fat people who go here? What if I sweat more than the skinny broad next to me? Will she notice? Are people in the lockers going to talk about anything besides how they hate the fat parts of themselves, and how many calories they burn? Am I going to break the equipment? Am I going to break myself? How the fuck do you use this shit? Is this stuff safe for me? Are they going to whisper about me? Do I shower naked? Are there stalls? Will I fit? Are people here going to be kind to me while I learn to love my body with exercise?

Here are the answers that I am given in response to my unasked questions: Here are all the activities that you can do here! Everything here works for everyone! Welcome to the gym!!! GYMS ARE FOR EVERYONE!!

Y’all, fer real, the exclamation point does not make it so.

sweaty-babe
Exclamation Point! Nice Try! No one gets anything past this fat sweaty face!

Here is the truth about many gyms: The cardio machines are too damn close together and squeezing by people working out is humiliating. My legs don’t fit on every single machine cause these thunder thighs are next level glorious. People in the locker rooms almost exclusively use body shaming as small talk with one another and we have to hear it. Sometimes classes are too fast for me and I can’t keep up. Instructors that are not fat are terrible at developing adaptations for fat bodies. No one talks about how exercise just makes you feel good. Sometimes I get hurt because fat body expertise is not something that trainers learn (Which is totally fucking wild cause the entire world just wants fat people to stop eating and work out – EXCEPT WE ARE NOT WELCOME). So a big hearty fat babe fuck that to fucking hell, fer fucks sakes is clearly in order.

Gyms are not for everyone (even though they damn well should be). Saying that they are just invisibilizes all of the bodies that don’t easily fit into the perception of gym culture. And that invisibility means that these spaces don’t take us into account. And really, they don’t take a lot of bodies into account. Queer bodies, Disabled bodies, Trans bodies, BIPOC bodies, femme bodies – None of us are centered at the gym. Not surprisingly because gym culture is just a more intense and like, steroid addled version of the fat hating, body shaming, cis normative, white supremacist world we live in. It sucks because moving our bodies in a way that feels good, that tires us out, that makes us sweat is a sweet sweet gift we give ourselves.

And this is where I have found myself recently – a kind of pissed off fattie that works out at a gym that doesn’t quite meet my needs. And if that is true for me – a privileged, albeit fat as all get out, white, cis, mostly able bodied woman then I feel super confident in saying that there are a bunch of us who are feeling a certain type of way.

But babes, What if the lie wasn’t a lie? What if gyms actually were for everyone?

What if they were spaces that warmly welcomes all bodies, but especially bodies that are not privileged in regular gym culture? A place where the locker room talk is never about how much we hate ourselves. Where exercise goals are not linked to weight loss, but to strength, endurance, having fun, sweating. Movement for the sake of movement. Nothing more. Where getting a milkshake after a work out is as celebrated as a protein shake. Where I learn to dead lift without feeling shitty about being fat, and where my fat body is honoured for being able to move serious poundage! Where the pictures on the wall are of us – fat babes getting sweaty together, dancing, lifting weights, running, lunging. And where the staff step into things with you, where they work to ensure the most welcoming, body positive, diet-free, unintimidating, fun, goddamn workout of your life. I would so fucking totally go there.

scale
This is the scale in my locker room today. Unclear whether the thing is actually broken or if some fat babe angel just went rogue with the post-its. Either way. YES.

Now, every time I work out, I spend a significant chunk of my time fantasizing about a gym for fat babes, for all bodies. Look, not every fantasy can be a throw down, hot for teacher scenario, ok?

I have a friend who loves to say ‘mass moves mass, baby’ about her fat babe workouts, and maybe she is right. Maybe if we demand that our bodies be honoured in the gym. Maybe if we refuse to let gym culture mess with our chance to move our bodies. Maybe if we hip check ourselves into position in front of a mirror with some weight to lift. Maybe we can get there together.

Hell, who knows? Maybe I will open a fucking gym. Its not like I’m doing anything else.

selfie
me. looking hot, fat, and doing – literally-nothing else.

Smooches.

Quitting like a Fat Babe does.

 

stardust

Babes. I fucking quit my job. A job I loved. A job I was good at, that I think made a tiny difference. And, let’s be real, a job that paid half the bills and meant that we could have fancy cheese sometimes.

That is some messed up, holy shit, mid life mother fucking crisis business, no?

Rhetorical question – IT IS OBVI WILDLY RECKLESS. Especially for a fat babe with a protestant prairie work ethic. YOU NEVER QUIT A JOB WITHOUT ANOTHER JOB. It is the middle class mantra of prairie people since time immemorial. But I totally fucking did. So there.

Welcome to the party. Confession: by party I mean the exact opposite.

I am fucking exhausted. Babes I’m tired. The kind of tired that makes me want to sleep for days. The kind of tired that makes nothing seem worth getting up for. The kind of tired that often requires expensive therapy and significant life changes. And, y’all, I have been tired for a while. So I quit.

Look it was either quit or lose everything, so the choice was a no brainer. I mean, babes, I pretty much have it all : partner that I love and that I still think is a total babe who is kind and patient and knows how to fix shit, a scrappy kid that is pretty much the best thing that ever happened to me, a couple dirt bag dogs, a mostly un-fucked up family that loves me, enough disposable income to ensure that I look sick as fuck, and a place to lay my head every night – not the worst life. In fact, kind of the best life.

And then there was a moment in time (my fucking birthday if we are going to be specific – which I am) where my S.O. was all ‘get your head out of your ass and engage with the people who love you like you love them back or I am outta here’ – Babes that is the kind of sentence that you fucking pay attention to. And then you fix it.

The reality of my life is that my anxiety has always been a tricky little fucker. And the other truth is that the kind of work that I do is deeply impactful – in all the good ways and all the really fucking bad ways. And then this other shitty thing happened where my crazy went and tied itself to land and humanity and the ways that this planet and her people are so sick. Babes, there is no escape from a sick planet. A lover once said to me ‘i don’t know how you can manage your anxiety when the world is so full of hurt’. She nailed it, babes, how do we manage in a sick world? How do those of us with giant hearts who feel things hard and long and deep stay afloat?

The hard truth is I have no fucking clue. I can’t tell when I am sick and when I am just anxious. I feel like I am dying every single day. I can’t turn off my worry about dying and leaving my little girl, I can’t stop being afraid that she will turn out like her mama, hurting in a world that needs more love and heart and peace than we can give. I can’t stop wondering whether today will be the day when my partner has just had enough of it and walks out the door.

Honestly, babes, anxiety has pretty much meant that I can’t have nice things (or maybe, secret confession, that I don’t deserve them). Or at least that’s how it feels. A lot.

That is why I had to quit the ever loving hell out of my job. Cause this is the kind of wonky brain stuff that fucking destroys lives and I may be crazy but I am not stupid and I was not gonna go down like that. Hell to the fucking no. Cause babes, on my clear days, I know that we are all worth fighting for, I’m worth fighting for fer crissakes. My people and community and this planet deserve a fat, kind hearted, blaspheming warrior femme to bring the noise, the chaos and the motherfucking style.

Now I get that quitting a damn job is maybe a large-ish gesture and that many people just hire a life coach or do yoga or something less, well, drastic. But I am a babe that tends to lean towards the dramatic, the hysterical, the ‘burn it with fire’ approaches to significant life problems. I mean why do anything halfway, amiright?

K, and to be clear i am also fully aware that quitting a job the same day you first think about quitting said job is not just born out of enormous balls and recklessness, but also privilege and a partner who works, so I get that I sound actually ridiculous. But here is the goddamn lowdown: I have until mid February to figure out what the fuck do with myself that will give me energy instead of suck the life out of me. I gotta figure out how to live in this world in a good way for my family and my community.

So the current plan is to start by doing myself a solid and taking some time to chill the fuck out. And from there, I am banking on the fact that adventure awaits.

So I quit. I worked my last day Friday. So that I can live.

First Day at No Work:

Post Work Out:

img_7965

My new work has an even more casual dress code than the clinic!

My New Co-Workers and Office:

 

The bar for efficiency and work ethic is extremely low here. Like, if I stay awake and don’t pee on the couch I will have surpassed my colleagues by significant amounts.

 

 

Owning summer like a fat babe does

Babes. Did you miss me?

Sorry it has been so long – I have been busy lighting shit in my life on fucking fire so y’know, less time to blog about it. I am coming out at the other end now so you will probably hear about all of the sordid details in a later post, but for now it is summer here on the Canadian Prairie which means I am totally goddamn overdue for a fat babe does summer blog.

Now when you live somewhere that boasts virtually 8 months of Winter, you know that that tiny little piece of summer sunshine is essentially the fucking most important thing in life. And you also know that soaking in the vitamin D that has been leached out of you every single frigid day is, like, the only purpose of summer (aside from getting laid, and bbq, natch).

So babes, essentially what I am saying is:

it is time to take off all your goddamned clothes. I mean, it is essentially the only responsible thing to do as a fat babe in the sunshine.

Don’t worry y’all I get it, summer can be a rough go for a fat babe about town. What with the sweat taking out our ‘waterproof’ foundation, the eternal summer curse of chub rub, and the entire world telling us that being fat in the summer is some kind of horrific nightmare, it can feel like summer is a fat phobic dick of a season. But babes I have to tell you that summer, she is just a power bottom. A couple of tweaks to the fat babe’s summer regimen and we can top summer all breezy day and sweet sweaty night. Trust, babes. This is our moment to fucking own summer. So, get this season leashed and let’s tear it up.

First things first, a slight detour to sound off about the fuckery that blooms every glorious summer. I need to just state for the absolute record that the level of fucked up people get about summer bodies is beyond tolerable. I am aware that, much like the mosquitos in my home town, it can range from a constant low level irritant to full on decimation of joy and fun.  It is the season where body dysmorphia kicks into high gear and everyone who hates their body suddenly also feels the need to pull some spandex over certain parts and then roll around in the sand and swim publicly with strangers. That is some complex shit for the average person so it is no wonder that everything around us starts to scream extra loud about how we are looking. Between the magazines, and the diets, and the endless body grooming it is no wonder we are drowning under the weight of it. The capitalism that swirls around fat phobia has essentially stolen summer from everyone, especially fat babes. So, babes, let’s do the world a solid and take that shit back. Also cause for real, we deserve to swim.

How to Own Summer – a Fat Babe Primer

OR

Tools to win both the physical and mental game

PHYSICAL or the actual shit you need:

Chub Rub – First, contrary to corporate media, the bulk of humanity have thighs that touch. Sure there are some people out there who do not experience this, but on the whole thighs that don’t touch are not a thing. And for those of us blessed with delicious thick and ample thighs, the chub rub story is legit non-fiction.  At this point I have tried virtually every. single. thing. to minimize the rub and I can say with full fat babe authority that there is a different solution for everyone. For me, its BodyGlide. If you are a runner you may be familiar – if not let me tell you that this is one more moment in time that we can thank atheletes for making shit better for all of us – hip replacements, cortisone shots, and motherfucking BodyGlide. It is literally a product designed for some random runner problem that I am not familiar with (although it has to do with nipples chafing on athletic wear – whatever), but that also works like a goddamn charm to make summer great again. Smear this shit on your inner thighs to keep the chafing from getting you down. It is magical. Solving chub rub is the first step to making summer your submissive little puppy so I have linked this article for some other ideas. I will say that although the author of this article poopoo’s the use of silicone lube, I know a TON of sex positive fat femmes who swear by uberlube for both its intended use and as an off-label chub rub solution. Also the article is for sure targeted towards women, but body glide knows no gender. Whatever works babes, whatever works.  http://www.xojane.com/healthy/chub-rub-thigh-chafing-solutions 

Bathing Suits – Not gonna lie, bathing suits for fat babes can be some next level shit for many of us and with totally legit reason, but if you can get there bathing suits will become the greatest fucking thing that ever happened to you. First, reality check: I am no fool, I know not everyone is down with getting naked in a world that treats fat like a worse fate than terminal illness. That’s cool. Babes, you don’t have to love your body every goddamned second to be a fat babe. Body positivity can literally go fuck itself. It doesn’t help; it just makes those of us who don’t always feel awesome feel guilty about our lack of positivity. And y’all we don’t need that shit in our lives. My baseline is pretty fat and pretty vain and that still doesn’t help me on the beach when I know the world is thinking otherwise about me. What helps me is this: gentleness with my body, swimming in comfort, and options for my beach fashion. Fat babe bathing suits are super plentiful as are cover ups, beach pants, all things that can help you rock a bathing suit. And babes of all genders and sizes can do bathing suits all thanks to a little thing I call ‘the Internet’. On-line bathing suit shopping. Totally here for it. whether you are a fancy femme, a genderqueer dandy, or a lumberjack butch, the internet will provide. Honestly there are no surprises about fabric- it’s all spandex so really all you are doing is deciding what style gives you the most life. So, whether you are full on string bikini at the busiest beach around or a full piece in your backyard, give yourself a minute to feel your body in the sun. No one can take that away from us. You are goddamn worth it. Let me just say it again – You are so completely worthy of summer.

Here’s some fat babe bathing suit fashion inspiration, if you need it:

IMG_5843
this is what I have been living in so far this summer.
IMG_5755
look at me on the beach. Living my best life.
CJOP1299
this ratty old jean vest has been a summer bathing suit staple.
IMG_4410
longline bathing suit top. it is a thing. a very good thing.

Beach bag – get a big ass bag and put shit in it. When we are tackling the beach as fat babes, we need to come prepared and for me, that means multiple options for multiple emotional possibilities. The beach bag gives you options for when your bravery takes a nose dive or for when it comes out swinging. Cause babes sometimes we got this and then sometimes we don’t. Either way the beach bag has your back.

My beach bag has the following:

  • extra tank top in case I need more/less coverage
  • shorts or beach pants in case I need more/less coverage
  • a coverup that barely covers up
  • Makeup
  • phone for selfies, natch
  • snacks
  • water
  • booze (depending)
  • sunscreen
  • headphones
  • Big ass towel that can handle my big ass

 

Shorts – For years I thought I couldn’t wear shorts. Years babes, years. It wasn’t until about 5 years ago that I was finally all ‘enough, I’m too hot for pants’ both literally and figuratively. I really thought that my body didn’t ‘suit’ shorts. I was convinced that the chub rub i experienced from wearing them was a sign that I should not be engaging in short wearing. Also, not a lot of fashion spreads featured fatties in daisy dukes. Then i ended up in a Facebook group full of fat babes who wore shorts all the time and looked sick as fuck doing it and so began my full obsession with shorts. Cause sometimes you just need to see a real live fat babe wearing a thing you told yourself you never would to get over the rules we make up in our heads. So, in case you think your fat ass can’t wear shorts (or whatever it is that you think you can’t wear) here is my fat ass wearing them.

IMG_5816
crop top AND shorts – Shit is getting real.
IMG_5789
Paperboy shorts MADE WITH LINEN – a for sure no no for me since i never iron…except WHO CARES?
IMG_5007
I did do grrrreat! This is about the longest pair I own – so work appropriate, amiright?
IMG_5127.JPG
Three versions of me killing it. You are welcome x 3.

Babes, for real, my thighs are not made to be wrapped in fabric all summer long, not anymore.

MENTAL or how to level up from the physical

‘Go Fuck Yourself’ Attitude– this almost goes without a need for commentary, but really if you can channel this at the beach everything will fall into place. Practice your strut. Prepare some choice comments for anyone who thinks they get to take up your space and time with their fatphobia. And literally tell people to go fuck themselves if they say anything. Yelling on the beach at strangers not your thing? No problem, use your mom voice to bring shame upon them, make out with your sweetie who knows how good they have it, or just slowly take the headphones out of your bag while never breaking eye contact with the offending dirtbag and put them on and walk the hell away. Bring someone who’s got your back, or better yet a crowd of fat babes to drown out the damn noise. I have no time for dirtbags when I need to cool down and neither should you.

Strong vanity game– summer is made so much easier if you are a vain motherfucker. If we feel like everyday is an opportunity to gift the world with a big dose of us then it really takes the edge off the beach fear. Honestly, people should be so lucky to be on the same beach as us. I mean fat babes are  everything, non?

Fat Babe Friends – Find your people, babes. They will be your salvation. Find the people who dont give two shits about what anyone says because it is 30C and their face is melting off. Find the babes who will hold you up when the world wants to tear you down. Stick with the ones who don’t want you to be perfect in your body- you know, the ones who just want you feeling enough in your body. Find the vain fatties, and the gentle, kind fatties, and the ‘i will cut you if you fuck with my friend’ fatties. Because babes, we are better together. Also rolling with a whole crew of fatties makes it a little easier to own the beach and, consequently, to own summer.

Which brings me back to my original point. Summer, babes. It is the best of times and the worst of times. And isn’t that what makes topping so fun anyways?

Don’t feel the heat this summer. BRING IT.

Smooches.

‘Dressing for my body type’ like a fat babe does.

I am on a tear today. Trust when I say there is a lot to be on a tear about. Babes, honestly I see myself as a positively oriented person. I do. I really feel like a glass half full kind of babe. And today is no different; its just that my glass is half full of bullshit. Kay fine, its totally full. Whatever, haters gonna hate.

Here is the deal. The internet is ablaze with some real world shit – my social media is currently packed with badass activism. The kind of activism I want to put my energy into: harm reduction, prison and justice reform, calling out rape culture, and decolonizing the ever loving hell out of healthcare. That’s what’s up for me and the people I love right now. And of course I’m also trying to be the least amount of racist i possibly can as a white settler here on Turtle Island (which is to say still pretty racist, but hopefully a little less all the time). So y’know I’ve got some shit on my mind.

And then today. Today, babes, I learned that my college put together a learning module about professionalism that asks that I wear clothes that flatter my body type and infers that I think twice about piercings, tattoos, and eye rolls.

**EYE ROLL**

Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot.

IMG_3631
does this ring make me look fat?

I can’t even babes. I will say right now that I am gonna be real real for a sec about some gender shit. By now most of you should have gathered that my fat babe utopia is for fat babes of all genders, but today I need to address some motherfucking lady business. I work in a gendered profession so when I read things like I did today all I can think is ‘how have we let ourselves use up so much goddamn energy on hating ourselves and fatphobia?’. And then I remember that our capitalist and colonial system has brilliantly co-opted women’s bodies(especially BIPOC bodies) as a first line of defense against those of us thinking about rising up. It is devastatingly unsurprising that my colleagues feel that this is the pressing issue on the table for my profession. It is because it is also the pressing issue in most women’s minds. The average woman spends an entire month a year worrying about appearance. A goddamn month babes. That’s 12 hours a week. Of that, 1 hour and 45 minutes is spent on worrying about being/getting fat (the rest is a more generalized ‘i look the worst and everything is terrible about me’ kind of worry). No wonder we have no time to smash the state, we are too busy destroying ourselves. That is how this system works to keep us separate, judgmental, and cold. Body policing babes. It is sapping our goddamn energy and taking away from the work that needs doing.

So, to get a little social work-y for a sec – lets unpack some of the ways we are fucking with each other – cause I believe that it has to start with fat babes, those of us who are already on our way to flipping tables about this stuff while also looking as babely as we wanna. Fat Babes can handle the duality of our lives – we get that we can care about how we look at the same time as we challenge how we think about how we look. Fat Babes, yall, we are complex motherfuckers.

Maggie’s Top Three Fat Hating Phrases That Keep Us All Down.

1. ‘Flattering’.

img-thing[1]
Clearly I’m not the first genius to come up with this thought.    Naturally there is a crop top. #croptopsforalloccassions
 First off fucking fuck flattering straight to fucking hell. What the hell does flattering even mean? It is just another way that we have learned to hate on each other. I have been told wearing stripes is unflattering…so is showing a little belly, so are tight mini-skirts, same for bikinis, and shorts. Too bad all of these things figure prominently in my spring/summer 2016 fashion game. Reality check. I know a million hot fat babes who buck these trends every. single. day. And they look like righteous babes in their sick threads. So what are we actually saying when we talk about ‘flattering’? Well first off, if we are talking about fat women, we are saying they are not covered up enough in billowy clothes to hide their fat- basically it isn’t flattering to wear clothes that make fat more visible. In general though, we are saying there are rules to follow – especially if you are fat and woman identified- and if you don’t follow them then we will put you in your place. We say ‘why can’t she just wear clothes that are more flattering for her body’ which means ‘i would never ever wear that because I know the rules and I would never break them because then other women would judge me too’. It is a vicious cycle of nonsense where no one quite knows the rules, and we really dont wanna break em so we distract from our lack of knowing by judging and assessing everyone around us and the beat goes on. This is some classic white people comedy of manners realness. And it will never end unless we all just stop using the word flattering forever. FUCK FLATTERING.

2. ‘Dressing for your body type’.

Let me just tell you how to do this once and for all. Find clothes you like. Put them on your body. Ask yourself ‘does this fit comfortably? do I feel hot?’. If the answer is yes to both then you have successfully dressed for your body type. Bravo.

39_1024x1024[1]
Can you even with this hot fat babe model from http://www.readytostare.com        And also that sick tee – beyond babes, just beyond.

If you feel amazing in what you are wearing where do the rest of us get off having a shitty attitude about whether you should wear that crop top with those leggings (you totally fucking should, btw.)? Stop policing each other, stop having an opinion about what we can and cannot wear. Guess what? If it is on my body, I can wear it. The ‘dressing for your body type’ trope is just another way of making women feel like they can’t wear what they love. Wear. What. You. Love. Life is too short babes. People are gonna hate us no matter what we wear; especially if we choose to be unapolagetically fat in the world and you know what? Better them than us. That’s not about dressing for your type, their shit is about body hatred and fatphobia, straight up, served ice  cold.

 

 

3. ‘Does she think she is getting away with that?’

Get away with what exactly? Wearing clothes other people don’t like to see on bodies like mine? Easy. I just get dressed.

maggie
Cage bras, babes. Pretty sure we should all be ‘getting away with this’.

When we wear clothes others don’t think fat people should wear, we never ‘get away with it’, we just don’t give a shit, or at least not enough to cave. Believe me, I know that when I wear a bikini to the beach that people are gonna have a thing to say. And babes, trust me, I spend time harnessing my inner fat babe bitch to get ready for whatever other women wanna throw at me. For real though babes I’d rather not-it would be way easier if women just stopped shit talking my steaze and *actually* let me ‘get away with it’.

These types of phrases are coded body policing. Most women experience it at some point in their lives and fat women live with it on the daily. This is on top of the month a year many of us spend doing it to ourselves. We spend so much time hating fat that we don’t even realize that we are wasting our lives on something that doesn’t even matter.

Fat.

Babes, it’s not a dirty word unless we make it one. Even fat activism has been diluted by body positivity. I’m all for loving our bodies, but my personal feeling is that until we get right with fat, we aren’t gonna get anywhere with another love yourself anthem. We need a fucking fat revolution so we can get to the actual revolution.

Cause babes, imagine if we all just stopped.

Imagine if my college put all that energy about appearance into integrating the TRC health recommendations from the Truth and Reconciliation Comission into nursing.

Imagine if all the fat phobic body hating clatter in our minds just quieted down.

Imagine if we could stop worrying about the giggling group of teens at the beach or the mothers cluck clucking at the school, or the women working out next to us at the gym.

Imagine never having to hear someone berate themselves for enjoying a piece of cheese before they eat said cheese.

Babes in this version of the world we could get some goddamn work done. We would have an entire month of spare time to give capitalist, racist and colonial systems the shit kicking they so richly deserve. We could stand in solidarity with fat babes fighting deep injustice on the frontlines; we could love each other so fiercely.

It would be so beautifully quiet. We would suddenly have time and space and peace to think. So much beautiful fat babe energy to focus on creating a just and kind and loving world. A world where we gather in the streets to honour, resist, celebrate, love, acknowledge, and engage with one another. In booty shorts, if we want.

Smooches.

Dropping my truth bomb like a fat babe does.

 

if i had 14k laying around i could have this bang on print by peter buchman (2014). i dont so ima just leave it here. xo

Babes I’m sucking right now, spring has sprung and so has some grade A anxiety. I have been crazy since my early 20’s; you would think I would be a little more prepared, but alas, I am still surprised when shit gets cray cray. My kid’s been sick, I’m sleep deprived, I am taking care of my gran, who I love big time, who has a damn ulcer on her foot that is stressing me the fuck out, and, if I’m being honest, I have been a shitty, checked out partner for the better part of a month, fine, maybe longer. My adulting gameplay is currently non-existent.
I can’t shake the pit in my stomach and I am feeling pressed by the weight on my shoulders. I literally had to pull over on the way home to take some deep, calming, breaths. Yes, like a damn hippie. An idling, deep breathing, hippie, but still.

It really feels like some grownup should be here to help me find my way and the fact that I am the only grownup in this scenario is daunting as hell.

I mean really, whoever thought leaving the fat babe queer in charge of the very young and the frail and elderly must have had a significant amount of drugs on board, right? They can’t possibly mean for me to be the one making sure people are ok.

Cause Babes, these days I am barely keeping it together.

Real talk, my life is a bit of a large scale disaster multiple times a year. The worst part is, it is often of my own making. I have a total dick of a brain that enjoys a spiral of dread thought process more than any damn thing. And when I’m bad I am straight up absent, especially around my family. One minute they have a totally present kickass version of me and the next I’m gone. Poof! Like a mental illness magic trick. I have been like this most of my adult life and I feel like I’m at the best crazy version of myself yet! Which, if I am being completely honest, is still an awful lot to ask the people you love to take.

 

whew! so much dirty laundry.

 

Now what has possessed me to get all personal about shit on the Internet? Honestly? I mostly just wanted to air my dirty laundry with all of you because no. one. ever. does. I’m writing this because I think it is kind of a lie to just write about how to be a fat, fierce, shit kicking babe without also talking about the things that hold me back, that keep me inside on sunny days, and that threaten my most dear and loving relationships.

Our spirits are hurting in this world that is both the best and worst of us wrapped up in a ball of water and rock. I am tired of being only the best version of myself. I think I could be less crazy if I just started letting the worst out too.

  

selfie outakes cause this shit is as real as my insta account. It is all me.

 

And while I love social media and selfies and Instagram, it is not designed with truth in mind-how can it be? A fat babes’s life is just a hell of a lot more messy than that. We are fucking beautiful badass layers of complexities. One second we are slammin’ hot, top model realness and the next we are fighting to sustain our relationships with one another and ourselves. And when you are working from a ‘keep it cute or put it on mute’ social media strategy you know the ugly is not going to make the cut. And that is okay. Facebook is not the real-est place in real town so no need to lay down our deepest darkest there, yknow? I just think we need to take a deep breath and start saying this shit out loud to each other and to ourselves. I’m tired of thinking every other fat babe out there has it together except me and I’m tired of feeling like the best version of myself is all I am. I’m just not here for that. So babes, I want you to know my life is hard right now, but it has been hard before and I’m pretty sure I’ve got this, but fuck it still sucks. I also want you to know that I look sick as fuck on the regular and that the reason my shit looks pretty good on the Internet is cause it is pretty good. It’s all the things, cause that is what living is like.

and also cause im vain as shit, dont forget that i am also straight up fat babe on fire level hot.

Smooches babes!

Shopping in the world like a fat babe does

Babes, I’m a shopper, I am. Fat vanity is my total game and I’m not ashamed to say I give many fucks about my appearance. Like, really a lot, a lot. I want to present in the world in a certain way and performing my gender and fat femme identity is important and helps me feel able to meet the universe head on. Also, I wanna look hot.

I love clothes and adornment and I love finding cool shit to wear. And babes, I’m pretty good at it. I have to admit though that sometimes my shopping gets a little out of control. I blame feelings of fat babe fashion scarcity- y’know, when you are like ‘I better stock up on this halfway decent sparkly sweater cause you don’t know what kinda plus size nonsense they are gonna come up with next’.

I have been scarred more than once by plus size whimsy- the weird razzle dazzle that ends up on random clothes. Like somehow if you bedazzle jeans enough, or embroider enough flowers on tops, or sew enough lace onto a dress that somehow this will fool people into thinking I’m skinny. Babes, there is no known number of sequins that can distract you from my fat ass (thankfully). To be clear, I am not opposed to rhinestones, sequins, lace, or flowers. I AM opposed to using them to try to hide my fat. I am beyond over plus size design that believes if you look deeply enough into the sparkle you won’t notice my fat bod. That is some fucked up fashion logic, y’all. Screw ‘slimming’. I am not here for clothes that want me to hide in them and really, sequins should be used for the power of good, not evil.

I’m also old enough that, for much of my 20’s, plus size fashion was largely about designing clothes to keep you from being seen. Cause why would a fatty want to be noticed in the world.

Fuck. That. Noise.

But I digress.

Whimsy and invisibility have directly led to my scarcity based shopping process. For real, I have been known to buy the same outfit twice, just in case.

Babes, do not do what I do. It is a shopping flaw. It’s unaffordable and it is what sustains the fast fashion industry, so basically the worst. Besides, things have gotten better, not great, but better for a fat babe’s fashion game.

I have spent the last couple of years trying to shake the twin shadows of whimsy and scarcity while shopping. For too long they have haunted my fat babe psyche and are the reason I have two pairs of the exact same goddamned sweat pants.

Babes, welcome to my fashion thunder dome: one babe enters, one babe leaves with only what she needs. Follow me into the ruthless world of the shopping trip and come out the other side unscathed and with a super cute outfit for your trouble.

Here is my shopping game plan – designed specifically to help me avoid being decimated by consumerism and my own personal fat babe shopping demons. These 6 key shopping strategies help me avoid a panicked shopping frenzy and major buyers remorse.

1. I only shop when I’m feeling A level hot. Basically I have to feel like the whole world wants to get with me and I’m all ‘meh, I’m busy’. Happily for me I’m often A level hot.

2. I put on my current favourite outfit before leaving the house and I don’t try on anything that I feel is less cute than the outfit I’m wearing.

3. Never buy doubles. Unless you are buying bras, but otherwise, never. Babes just don’t do it. It seems like such a good idea, but that is just the other side of the scarcity coin, and then you have two pairs of the same pants for the swap pile.

4. Avoid the ‘cute enough for a fattie’ fashion. Y’know, the shit that is made out of fabric that looks kinda ok but feels like shit, or that has just a little too much business going on. These items can be sneaky and sometimes they make it into the change room, but don’t let them come home with you. No matter how much they whine about it.

5. Bring a friend. Someone who will give it to you straight and not let you make bad choices. Friends can’t make it? That is why we have smartphones. I have been known to text change room photos to other fat babes for second opinions.

6. Look beyond the whimsy. Sometimes you gotta see past the sequins. I have a stitch ripper and I have used it to make clothes that fit great, wearable. Sometimes a fat babe has to take matters into her own hands and sometimes the whimsy can be removed.

Ok babes, come top shopping with me:

 Ok. See? Pretty cute right? Casual, side pony, didn’t try too hard, but still looks slammin’.

Then I take off the coat and scarf…

  BAM!!!!!!!!
That is a leopard print t-shirt dress. Top that Winners…if you dare.

K, first up:

 ok, teal. You are tricky because I love you no matter what. You could be a misshapen sack and I would have a hard time leaving you behind. Babes, honestly I probably would have bought this if my brother had not been all ‘it’s ok, but is it really worth 29.99?’. THIS IS WHY YOU NEED A FRIEND! Or a younger brother who doesn’t care that teal is like, a really hard colour to come by.

Ok on to the next. Now even though it is still in the effing deep freeze of the Canadian prairie, spring shit is starting to pop up, and I am so desperate for this ungodly season to be over that I tried this on:


  Cute right? Cute print, nice shape, can be knotted for all your crop top needs…WRONG. This is a trick top. The fabric was awful and I overlooked it for aesthetic. Do not buy clothes that feel shitty because you are wooed by a print. Fabric. Is. Everything. I don’t care what it actually is made of, just don’t buy shit that feels gross on your body. I have had to learn this lesson multiple times, don’t be like me.

Also, don’t buy clothes for a season that is not yet upon us. Especially spring fashions. Now I am aware that what I am suggesting is a seemingly impossible task for those of us who get 6 months of winter. I know babes, you just want it to be over, and a tank top in a rack full of winter wear is like seeing the first robin, but just leave it there, in nature, for the next fat babe to see.

Ok moving along.

Well, this happened:

 At first I was all ‘maybe?’. Cause y’all, I like a deep V and a horizontal stripe as much as the next babe, but then…
  There was the issue of extra side fabric. Why? What is the point? Just, no. This felt like some straight size designer got stuck making a plus line and was all ‘extra side fabric for drapiness, sure. Whatever.’. Just cause people clearly hate their jobs does not mean fat babes should have to pay. Lazy design or evil design-You decide.

Either way this top is a mess- at least on me. I will say that it is so interesting how one item that looks crap on one fat babe can look brill on the next. Our fat bodies are all so different that sometimes shit that is an epic fail on me will look sick as fuck on you. Pretty sure that extra side fabric is a universal fail, but I am prepared to be surprised.

Ok, I was totally sure I was trying on a dress next, but I was deceived by this tricky tunic:

I love the print and feel strongly that a denim vest or black cardigan and clunky boots would make this totally work appropriate.

Babes then I noticed the slits:

 on each side. A TUNIC. Now I have nothing against a tunic, I just don’t like being surprised. And this print as a tunic gives me pause. I phoned a friend. Well texted, cause I had to send pics, natch. Here is the text convo:

Me: Is this work appropriate or just ugly granny?

Me: K just looked at the pics I sent and I’m thinking ugly granny?

Gill: I feel like you look hot and would rock that dress. 

Me: It’s a tunic. 😦

Me: I feel it is too ‘tragique fat girl fashion’ for me.

Gill: I understand those concerns. 

And there you have it. When in doubt mull that shit over with someone who has your best interests at heart.

Finally, this shopping trip started to pay off:

 This is more like it. Fabric I can totally live with even if it is that cotton feeling rayon. That print is fucking awesome and this length is perfect for a mini skirt. And I like it as much as the leopard print dress I came in with. Also I can’t wait to wear it which is an excellent sign.

And so endeth my shopping trip. One cute top, singular. No doubles, no nearly there fashions. No feeling shit about my choices. All thanks to my guidelines for avoiding fat babe shopping traps.

Now fat babes, I showed you mine, show me yours? How do you avoid personal Fatshion “dont’s”, and bring home only the cutest most wearable things? How do you take risks and still manage to dodge the plus size weirdness that exists out there. Tell me all your secret strategies!

Cause babes we gotta wear something, so figuring out a way to make shopping fun and effective is a deeply useful fat babe skill.

And remember, your fat bod is fucking perfect. If clothes aren’t working don’t despair- we don’t need to take on plus size designers poor choices as a reflection of our body’s worth.  It is not a matter of your body not fitting the clothes, it is the clothes not fitting your body. Which is the clothes’ loss not yours.

Go forth and adorn. Smooches.

 This is how I wear that top, by the way. It was not cropped enough for me so a quick knot helped make it work, dontcha think?  💋