For so many years I have been afraid to tell my story. Afraid of the backlash and stigma of being a rape survivor, afraid of knowing that people know, afraid to be that person.
Living in a time that seems dire and down right lonely some days, I’m reflecting on past times where feminine liberation was shared among sisters. Whilst I may be blessed to have been “forced” to move back home and back with my partner, I can’t help but yearn for the care free liberators of nude empowerment movements.
It was a cold day in December. We had just passed our one year anniversary. We made plans to do this about a month ago, but that didn’t make it any easier. I step on the bus and there he is, smile beaming like always when we lock eyes. His black roxy hat backwards covering his chocolate brown hair. His deep brown eyes sparkling, showing that the smile is pure. His 5’8 body dressed in the usual outfit. Blue jeans ripped at the bottom around his black DC sneakers. A black zip up sweatshirt with camo print on the inside, a sweatshirt I borrowed and once felt safe in, with a black green day t-shirt on under it. I sit next to him and lean my head on his shoulder. The scent of axe dark temptation filling my nostrils. A smell I loved.
As I’m writing this, I’m currently locked down in the UK, living full time in a van. And this experience has taught me so many things. It’s taught me that some people are miserable, life-sucking bastards and if they cracked a smile, it would literally kill them. And I’ve learned that other people are really decent human beings who genuinely don’t judge.
These are all guesses, I have no clue why this is so hard for me this year. I know this year is different but it's different for a lot of reasons. I will tell you all the reasons I think this year is hard on me and why I feel this way.
The air was cool against my bare arms, clouds started to cover the moonlight that illuminated the camp, it was a beautiful area, nature had taken over but that is what made it that much more alluring.Ivy vines growing up the bark, a meadow of wildflowers, dandelion seeds floating through the air. Tree stubs and fallen branches made natural seats all around. A stream flowing around the edge with its own little pebble beach completed the scene. It was so tranquil. I was lost in the beauty of nature when a cold breeze made me shiver, I turned towards my tent to grab a blanket when a shadow immersed me in darkness. Goosebumps raised all over, the hair on my arms and the back of my neck rose in anticipation. I knew I wasn’t safe but my body was unable to run away, turning around I managed a few steps backward.
Hey it's Alea Thomas you may be hearing this because I'm gone by now and wondering why well my life may be amazing from your eyes but that's speaking from the outside. Let me bring you inside so you can understand why I'm gone. You may say I'm a coward but how can you say if you never been in my shoes but if you have then you know why and how I got to where I am but first a little about myself.
Today while walking through a crosswalk a car decided to get right next to me as if I was taking to long to cross the street. We exchanged some quick words however the words that came out of his mouth as I proceeded to walk were " Okay Move Fatty". It was right there... It was those quick words that took me right back to the negative space and all the pain I already deal with having body dysmorphia. I tried to laugh it off but as most of us know... words cut deep! To be honest I have never been publically ashamed like that before. I felt so uncomfortable even with my own man with me that I started to talk about these plants I wanted just to clear some of the awkwardness. The problem wasn't with him... the problem was I became so uncomfortable in my own skin. I have always struggled with holding EVERYTHING in, I am usually the type to suffer in silence but NOT this time.
“Get yourself out of whatever cage you find yourself in” -John Cage (Nelson 54).
I wanted to speak on behalf of everyone who can’t gain weight, has heard the phrase “she only eats air” constantly, and for the people who are unhappy with the way they look. Everyone has this growing sensitivity towards fat people being shamed or the mental damages they go through, not that I’m saying they shouldn’t, but nobody here talks about how being skinny is just as bad. They SUFFER JUST AS BAD as the obese.