Yesterday I told you all about the little home I built myself. Today, just for the sake of gratuitous pleasure, I want to show you the inside. My shack is prettttttty cozy.The inside of my door, shoes, photobooth pictures from ages 16-present, A Crass poster, a photograph taken with a disposable film camera in the year 2006 by my friend Meg Shoemaker, A washcloth that says “Galina”, which is the name of a good friend who has passed away, a plant my partner’s mom gave me, my dresser, and my records.A lot of the same stuff as before + my afghan curtain, and stuffed animals people have made me.Lots of pictures of my grandmother, and a painting made by my friend Manny Silva. It’s supposed to be me and he gave it to me when I was 19. My desk, my ever-present coffee mug, roses from my garden, more plants, most notably one from my friend Jaiye that is supposed to be extra helpful in clarifying polluted air ( I live riiiiight off the highway ) a potholder made for me by Kelly, thread holder turned to earring holder, my record player, bag by Sarah Faith Gottesdiener, SECOND earring holder made by the amazingly talented Ketch Wehr. SKYLIGHT! + fake Chanel potholder knitted by my friend Sarai. Book porn for those of you who like to snoop. Some highlights include Assata by Assata Shakur, The Power of Feminist Art by Norma Broude, Mary D. Garrard, and Judith K. Brodksy, and Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole and Elise Resch. Also an amazing print by Erik Marinovich given to me by my friend Nishat Akhtar. I really do hope to reside in the 5-1-0 for a lifetime.My box of zines, a bizarre melty crayola looking painting by Derek Franklin , More Sarah Gottesdiener work, a tiny test print that I pulled out of the trash by Tammy Rae Carland (this woman was one of my absolute heros when I went to California College of the Arts 12 years ago. She taught there, and I loved her enough to steal her trash *hangs head in shame*), my wood burning stove, and tea kettle. My under-loft closet situation The full view!
This post has made me accutely aware how wonderfully talented all of my friends are. My walls fit only a fraction of the art I collected during my six years of art school, and I think what is up is the cream of the crop.
Soon, we will return to our regularly scheduled healthy eating/body image/fitness posts. But for now, I hope you enjoyed! (I guess the loose thread here is, when you feel strong and healthy and like yourself, you free up enough brain space to do really cool and exciting things like build a shack in the backyard)
See y’all soon!
It has been a good, good week over at Super Strength Health. Before I could even sneeze, my first month of Summer vacation has gone by, and my brain is going a million miles an hour. This has been quite a productive season so far! I am putting the finishing touches on a few very cool projects (think book proposal and a gluten-free challenge program) and am in the baby stages of planning some big stuff for the future that I can’t quite talk about yet.
I really like being a health and wellness coach, have I mentioned that?
Christy Morgan is the powerhouse behind Definition Magazine. She is vegan, a cookbook author, a personal trainer, and just an all around powerful babe who I want to be around.
This article is about the dreaded numbers. She says: “The new “Fitspiration” movement is not helping women be any less obsessive. It’s a big pet-peeve when personal trainers and physique competitors talk about their numbers or their clients numbers all the time like they mean something. For the average person we do not need to dwell on the numbers. And they can be triggers for those who have disordered eating patterns or an obsessive nature. It’s important that trainers and coaches steer their clients into how they feel rather than how they look and use other methods to track progress than just the number on the scale. I wish physique competitors would stop telling average people what they do while getting ready for a competition because that isn’t what the average person should be doing.”
AAAAAA-men. There are a ton of beautifully sculpted amazing competitors out there, and I find the whole process of how they get that way to be, I dunno, triggering. Not like for me personally, but for the universe. I get it. You have to do crazy things to get those muscles to pop out. Probably the masses don’t need to know every excruciating detail. It can make a girl feel crazy to hear that someone measured their broccoli and avoided water for a couple of days, ya know?
It takes a lot of guts to get out there and be a lady lifting decidedly unladylike amounts of weight. Some people applaud you, sure, but others say all sorts of asinine and ridiculous bullshit. Read all about that in this article, and don’t be surprised if you laugh, then cry, then feel a little proud.
I would own every single item in this etsy shop. Feminist Art was instrumental to my upbringing, a sort of theoretical mom to guide and shape my brain. Basically, feminist art is about the best thing ever. These posters (T-shirts, totebags, post cards) say so, in no uncertain terms.
I understand why people eat Paleo. I understand that aspects of it are healthy (lots of plants, zero processed foods and no sugar? I am all about that). I also think that it is unsustainable, and that a lot of the theory is rooted in speculation. (I’m not saying my diet is perfect in comparison, it’s simply an observation.) Please go read this article to read a ton of detail about why.
Rhiannon is hilarious. I met her many years ago in Portland, OR and have been a huge fan of her writing ever since. This is her brand new blog, and it is full of the stuff that makes me laugh my butt off.
In this story:
The characters: Rhiannon, an angsty Riot Grrl, and her oh-so-serene hippie lady mom
The scene: Family vacation at a nude hot spring
The result: Hilarity ensues.
I dated while I had my eating disorder. Some might say, I dated a lot. I hung out with super cute and nice people, who did cool things and treated me well. I dated some for a short period of time and then they wanted us to go out to eat, and I had a panic attack and stopped returning their calls. I dated one person for quite awhile, and our entire relationship was a battle.
“How do you need to exercise today?” he’d ask me every morning, knowing that there wouldn’t be room to have a rest day altogether. I’d tell him I was going to the gym to x, y, or z (spin, elliptical, or treadmill) for an hour, exactly, at whatever time I’d deemed most “effective”. At first he’d suggest more functional and exciting fitness (maybe even things we could do together) but eventually he gave up. I’m sure it wasn’t worth the battle.
In the thick of my eating disorder there wasn’t room for flexibility. It destroyed romantic relationships and friendships, controlled my train of thought until there wasn’t really anything else to talk about. During my eating disorder I finished my undergraduate degree, moved from Portland to San Francisco, started grad school, started writing a novel, and got my Masters degree. I thought about those things about half as much as I thought about food, how I needed to exercise, my weight, and how much I hated my body.
Luckily, everything has changed over the course of my current relationship.
It didn’t change because of him. It changed because I was tired. Tired of being so completely inside of my own brain that I knew I would never be able to truly love someone. It changed because I saw this person that I really liked, and it killed me to think of how hurtful I’d been to previous partners. I would be embarrassed to let my anxieties control this new relationship in the way that they had my last few. I saw my partner’s integrity and I wanted to have as much as he did. I wanted us to grow together, to learn from one another and I wanted to have the ability to reflect on what that meant for my life. I knew that if I was restricting my food, compulsively exercising, thinking obsessively about my flaws or sneaking away to throw up, I would never, ever get to know my partner the way that I wanted to. And I knew the minute I saw him that he was a person I wanted to know. I had to give up some of my behaviors to make that fantasy real.
It didn’t happen over night. In the beginning of our relationship things were pretty bad, actually. But I never stopped trying. And he never stopped calling me out when he saw my old behaviors sneak up. I wanted to a juice cleanse? He was the first person to say “sounds like eating disorder to me!”. I respected him. I respected his opinion, which he was very much not afraid to voice to me. It helped me to get better. A little better all the time.
The relationship I wanted to have with my partner gave me the courage to grab the relationship I wanted to have with my body. Deciding to have a better relationship with my body gave me the relationship I got with my partner.
Having a good relationship with my body means I get to have relationships with other people.
It means I get to make the choice of whether or not to have sex based on how turned on I am as opposed to how much self hate is looping through my brain.
It means I get to go on vacation with my sweetheart without a perpetual state of terror.
It means splitting a vegan and gluten free donut over coffee and smiling at each other. Thinking about how deeply in love I feel, as opposed to what the donut is going to do to my frame.
Having a good relationship with my body means I get to augment my workout schedule to enjoy exercise with my partner, or exercise that supports time with my partner. It means skipping exercise in order to go to his art openings or to see his student’s final shows. It means I get to have pride in the fact that I show up for other people now, that my first priority is not how much I make myself sweat.
Having a good relationship with my body means that I get to trust that my body will be fine so that I can put effort towards someone else.
Having a good relationship with my body means that when my partner has a birthday he can choose where we go to eat, because it’s not about me.
It means I can stay up late and ride roller coasters and travel to different places where I am not 100% sure what the food will be like. It means I can eat within my allergen and ethical restrictions (vegan and gluten free) but steer clear of my preferences (sugar free, processed food free) every now and again because it makes for a more joyful, flexible life.
Having a good relationship with my body means I can ask my partner (or a friend!) how their day was over dinner and not be so absorbed in my anxiety about food that I don’t really hear what they say.
Having a good relationship with my body means that for the past nearly-three years I have woken up next to someone who would definitely not still be around had things not improved for me.
Having a good relationship with my body has made me the kind of person I wanted to see myself be, in relationship and out.
It has given me enough confidence to not be so selfish.
It has shown me that “control” is really, truly not the thing that matters.