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 Post subject: Star's experience
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 07, 2008 7:41 pm 

Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2008 7:11 pm
Posts: 1
First I want to thank Max for working on these forums. My experience this year was complicated. I came to Nolose having been many times. I missed the opening gathering so I felt a little disconnected. I also came knowing that this was the year that I was diagnosed with diabetes. I am struggling a lot with this diagnosis. In one way it has been good as I am on meds and have changed many things and I feel a lot better. On the other hand it has messed with my identity as a fat person. I have lost some weight. I am still completely fat. But this has triggered all of my dieting upbringing and the media and the mainstream world is waiting right there to reinforce any feeling of being "GOOD" for having lost weight. I feel like it is this line of cocaine I am chasing. I am coexisting as a fat fierce empowered person and someone who would give their right eye to be thinner (that one is the hard wired training I received at my mommy's knee). I did feel like I fit in at the conference though. It was good to have that precious reinforcement that thin is not the end of all problems and that there is another way to live.

I was confused by the intersectionality theme. I thought it was kind of strange to talk about intersectionality yet to separate us all into separate groups. I value private space for affinity groups but I think the confusion really mirrored all of our confusion on how to deal with intersectionality. I really liked the town hall meeting and greatly appreciated hearing from the different groups. I feel that it was a great way to educate each other. I don't expect other people to always know what I need in terms of my oppressed identities and I do get tired of educating but really, I'd rather educate each other in an environment that is hopefully as close to safe and accepting as possible. It is alienating though when there are people who should know how to be sensitive but aren't.

I would also like to clear up my own clickiness. I realize that I stick like glue at the conference to a very few people because I am usually scared and shy. I get anxious and I seek comfort in others I know. But I want to have more conversations with new people. I think I feel a lot of guardedness that doesn't seem to exist at other venues. I wonder how much our communal fat experience affects how we interact with each other. How many of us are just really terrified.

One thing I am reacting very strongly too is the inaccesibility of some of the language at the conference. I am very educated. I have a graduate degree. I feel that the post-modern and beyond language is really distancing from emotion for me. I also feel like it is a very privileged language as it implies a certain level of education.

I was very excited to dress up in my great new cape thanks to Bertha and Deb and I thought it was very fun that it was held in North Hampton just because I like the town. Also super kudos on the fabulous food.

 Post subject: Re: Star's experience
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 07, 2008 8:03 pm 

Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2008 3:38 pm
Posts: 47
Location: Oakland, CA
Hey Star! Great to see you here.

I totally understand about the click-ish stuff. I noticed my own journey this year. After registration, during dinner, I was overwhelmed and exhausted and totally didn't want to interact with anyone new. And as the weekend progressed, I got more relaxed and more open to new folks. I feel like that is another reason I wish the conference were longer. (Which I know would make it harder for many folks to come to, but I think it's important to think about the overall balance before we rule anything out.)

I notice, too, that this is the first year I felt like I actually connected with you, and with your partner, despite having been at a couple noloses together in the past. I've relaxed into the idea that eventually we'll all get to know one another, and so I don't feel the need to push so hard to get to know everyone right away.

So true that thin is not the end of all problems. After all, the greatest cause of death is birth. :mrgreen:

Love, Max

 Post subject: Re: Star's experience
 Post Posted: Tue Oct 14, 2008 4:31 pm 

Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2008 12:11 pm
Posts: 4
i am really excited to work with people on some kind of way to help break down cliques. i really like the home group/family/affinity group/call it what you will model -- where everyone is assigned to a group that checks in throughout the weekend -- but i hope we do something like this next year.

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