Embodying Your Values
This chapter explores how eating can reflect our programming, the rules we've been taught about what we are "allowed" to eat, what is moral, appropriate, or healthful for us to eat. Physical appearance and physical activity can reflect our programming. We may be very aware of how hemmed in we are by rules or beliefs we picked up along the way about how bodies like ours could look, what they could do, where they could go, and we may also have had difficult or traumatic experiences of discrimination when we broke the "rules." Sakina, a fat woman and artistic director for a non-profit organization, dressed carefully, in the most fashionable designer labels she could find in her size, with time-consuming makeup, and a top-of-the-line salon maintaining her hair. Whatever our values-driven self-presentation, learning to living (more) publicly while fat is an opportunity to create space for other values. One way to experiment with this is the bathing suit exercise.