I think this photo of Queen T’hisha from Women en Large is a beautiful way to start the New Year.
Queen T’hisha: I was born in the San Francisco Bay Area. I found out I was a girl at age eight. I found out I was African-American at age fourteen. I was told I was fat at age twenty. I had been a professional dancer for four years. I had auditioned and gotten accepted by a dance company, but was not allowed to perform because “they” said I was fat. But I was so obviously talented they accepted me into the company. What a crock of shit.
Being fat only marginally impacted my life until I went to college and interacted with the white majority. As I tried to assimilate, my naïveté continued to turn the survival Rubik’s Cube over and over. Racism and sexism as practiced in America included body hostilities. I didn’t grow up with the belief that fat women were to be despised. The women in my family were fat, smart, sexy, employed, wanted, married, and the rulers of their households.
I had plenty of romantic relationships with people raised outside this society, or who didn’t adhere to its sexist standards of beauty. They affirmed my sanity and gave me a worldly perspective, not one limited by white racist misogynist American culture. I’m tall, African-Nature, fat, smart, and deserve all the things I want.
Best for the New Year.