Dangerous Compassions

not disposable

Last night I was at a fat tea held over zoom. It was my first activity with Fat Rose, which is a fat liberation, disability liberation group.  I met a bunch of people and liked them, heard what’s going on in other parts of North America. 

I liked being in a space where being fat was normal and ok.  That was new for me.

I bound zines while listening, and I checked in, which felt good also.  I was the only desert dweller.  Most of the people were in the Bay Area. 

I want to do more with them.  I lasted just more than an hour.  Sometimes I can like something a lot, but it feels intense and I can only do it for a little while.  Especially at the beginning.

I keep waiting for a bored time.  Things seems busy and weird despite civilization slowing down.  Yesterday Ming bought me some menstrual pads, as well as laundry detergent and bananas.  I was excited.

I don’t understand how long we’ll be told to stay home, and I don’t understand how much things will break down.  I guess not knowing is part of the fun of all this.  Two weeks is pretty different from six months.

Ming’s been wearing a sweater I wore for a while and don’t like anymore.  It looks great on him, dark blue and light blue marled together.

One of my access needs is that I can be quiet in groups and need people to let me be who I am, including quiet, without taking it personally.  I don’t want to face consequences later, that I was quiet. 

My quiet is not about you.  It’s about introversion, what feels comfortable for me, not knowing what to do socially, a lifetime of being told I don’t matter and my words aren’t relevant to the conversation, my need to feel safe, listen, and feel things out for a long time before speaking up a lot–possibly indefinitely. 

Possibly I’ll never feel safe enough to talk a lot, especially if the group is difficult for me because it’s full of small talk, weird us and them binary gender stuff, conversation about media I don’t use like movies and tv shows, a bunch of white cis ostensibly straight people, commonplace guilt ideas about food and fatness, or even talking a lot about the kids everyone has. 

I love kids, but I never had my own.  I want everyone to get support about raising their kids, but yeah.  It’s especially hard when non-kid-havers are getting assumed about or shamed.

A lot of my traits make me strange.  People can assume that my not speaking means I’m angry, stupid, or don’t have thoughts to share.  Or I’m judging them a lot. 

Really, I don’t belong almost anywhere I go.  I belong at the radical mental health collective meetings, and now I belong at fat meetings also.  At meetings of the Las Vegas Catholic Worker, I’m loved and known.  Everywhere else, I can try really hard to understand what’s going on and behave appropriately, but I miss the mark.

My main disability is capitalism.  I’m disabled by capitalism.  Being crazy can be hard too.

“Wrong Laura-Marie!  I need to trademark myself!” I just told Ming.  “You look really cute in my sweater.”

“I feel very cute in your sweater,” Ming said.  “What’s more important, I feel warm in your sweater.”

By Laura-Marie

Good at listening to the noise until it makes sense.

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