To The Man In The Suit

To the man who told me yesterday that there needed to be less of me,
that I needed to take up less space with the cells making up my skin and my nose and my stomach and my body,
that I needed to consume less to combat the dreaded f-word, the fat word,
I say no.

These are my arms,
my mother’s arms, my grandmother’s arms– strong and proud and glorious–
meant for lifting up others and doing our own damn housework and holding beautiful babies, should we choose to embrace motherhood.

These are my legs,
my father’s legs, my grandfather’s legs– tall and full and solid–
meant for rooting into the ground when the world grows weary and standing up for our beliefs and for holding us up through laborious journeys.

This is my stomach,
the embodiment of the women who have come before me– soft and changing and occasionally a battleground–
meant for taking in the energy that sustains my strength and for deep belly laughs and one day, not now or soon but one day, holding a child.

Sir, this is my body. I could name every part and tell you about its lineage and its purpose. But this body is mine. And that is reason enough to love it.

So, no. I will not take up less space for your eyes and plastic soul.
This is my body.
Not yours.

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