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I ran across a video in my feed yesterday and I have to admit made me smile. It’s not perfect. The song lyrics have some problematic phrases. And I wish the leadership of the dance was a little bit different. But with all of that said, this dance held at a technical high school had some promising elements. One element is the diversity of body sizes and types found in the dance. This wasn’t 50 typical, thin, blond professional dancers and one or two token fatties. This was a cross section of a school with single digit and decidedly double digit dancers collectively shaking their groove thing. And some of those folks could really move! I find the whole thing pretty exciting! Here it is if you’d like to take a look:[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0EUEg7kd6Cg]
Body diversity is so important for so many reasons. When I was in high school, I didn’t really have role models that showed me that fat people could be happy or dance or be sexy or have sex. I didn’t really have anything to counteract the dominant message that the ONLY way to have these things was to get and stay socially, acceptably skinny first. That’s why I love this video. There are people of all kinds of sizes and all kinds of SHAPE gettin’ down. The bigger students aren’t all modified hourglass plus-sized models. Not that there is anything wrong with being a modified-hourglass, size 12 plus-sized model. It’s just refreshing to see that people come in all DIFFERENT shapes. Some have a lot up top. Some have relatively small bust and a lot of booty. We’re looking at round, square, apple, hourglass, pear and every other shape and fruit you care to name. So we get to see that bodies don’t just have to be one size to be awesome. Bodies don’t need to be just one shape to be awesome. Bodies don’t have to be one height to be awesome. Bodies don’t have to come in one color to be awesome. Bodies don’t even need to all work the same way to be awesome. Bodies of all different kinds can just rock the house together.
I wish I had this to look at when I was a teenager. I’m really glad that teenagers get to look at it now.
Jeanette DePatie (AKA The Fat Chick)
P.S. Want to book me to come talk to YOUR teenagers about body diversity? I’m booking talks right now for spring. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to make sure you get the date you want! I can work within most schedules and budgets! You can learn more about me here.
P.S.S. Want to get a book about how to move your body joyfully and safely at any size or shape? Buy my book here.