On Wednesday, I was reading a Wiki article about Hatshepsut. In it, they talked about a relief of a journey to the Land of Punt which Hatshepsut had sponsored. The Queen of said land had a "condition" known as steatopygia and there was a link to another article about it.
It turns out that a prominent rear-end is a genetic trait (um, yeah) which is common among Bush and Hottentot women. These same women have "unusual"* genital characteristics which seemed to have been of more interest to the white explorers. The two are often descibed in the same breath, as though they are somehow linked.
My immediate reaction was one of utter recognition. Here in these photos and drawings was my ass. My fat ass that has been such a source, in the past, of shame and humiliation. That thing which consistently brings the most negative attention into my life. Only recently have I found someone who appreciates it as the lovely booty that it is. And here were two groups of people in Africa who had, obviously, appreciated it enough so that it was a prominent feature for all the women. What a lovely discovery.
It's reflective, a bit, of my journey and why I am starting this new blog. I have another blog, you see, that is pretty personal and I have enjoyed keeping it that way. But in the past year or so, I have been on a journey of accepting my body for what it is. It has led me to question so many assumptions about what is being reported about overweight and obesity and has brought up all sorts of feelings about what I am reading and my response to others in the world.
So this will be a blog about finding the things that reflect my reality in this world and sharing them here. It will be about questioning the standards of health and beauty in this world and giving voice to my anger, my joy, my anxiety, my humor, and...well, just all of me in the face of it all.
I want to put out a caveat: I am a proponent of Health at Every Size. Although, I understand it to be a personal issue, I do not agree that weightloss in and of itself is the way to health. In fact, I believe that in several ways it is detrimental to one's well-being. That's my bias. So if you are looking for support for your struggle to lose weight, you might wish to look elsewhere. There are plent of places out there which will fit the bill.
*Please note that those who find this trait unusual were white explorers. The women, themselves, were perfectly comfortable with it as, I imagine, were their partners.
P.S. I'll be making this look more snazzy soon. I promise!