I Looked at my Body and Said Yes: where disability and style meet
February 24, 2016 12:54 PM   Subscribe

I think I’d gotten it into my head that disability is always, on some level, supposed to feel bad. Like if I fought myself all the time, I was somehow doing it right. And then I got tired.[...] I didn’t want to do battle every time I got dressed anymore.
posted by Anonymous (12 comments total)

This post was deleted for the following reason: Poster's Request -- frimble

As a queer woman with Cerebral Palsy, all I can really say is Yes. Yes to all of this.
posted by aclevername at 2:30 PM on February 24, 2016 [5 favorites]

Check out her other article on sex, kink, and disability. It's really good too.
posted by 256 at 2:38 PM on February 24, 2016 [5 favorites]

When my best friend got married a few months ago, she gave me another set of wardrobe instructions: “wear something you feel comfortable in and will use again.”

That's exactly what every bride/groom on planet Earth should tell their wedding party. Why would you do it any other way?
posted by kate blank at 2:49 PM on February 24, 2016 [12 favorites]

Disabled people are always tired. That’s our big secret we’re not supposed to tell you.

And that is where I got teary-eyed.
posted by mittens at 2:50 PM on February 24, 2016 [20 favorites]

I think I will just leave this here
posted by adamvasco at 3:37 PM on February 24, 2016

having kick-ass footwear seems to be this thing that I and other wheelchair folk share. One dude I knew had a thing for outlandish cowboy boots, and I have spent more than I am proud of on my Doc collection. Having strong shoes is a great way to project NFG regardless of how your particular body works.
posted by angrycat at 3:42 PM on February 24, 2016 [14 favorites]

Disabled people are always tired. That’s our big secret we’re not supposed to tell you.

And that is where I got teary-eyed.

Yes to this. No one gets it, particularly if your disability is invisible/less visible (I'm deaf).

Absolutely brilliant article and I so thoroughly enjoyed reading it. Keen to get into some of her other writing.
posted by prettypretty at 5:28 PM on February 24, 2016 [7 favorites]

I love her suit and tie! As well as those lime-green sneakers. Makes me want to go out and find some flourescent lime-green kicks myself!
posted by Rosie M. Banks at 6:17 PM on February 24, 2016 [3 favorites]

The other day on Facebook my friend complained about a headline saying, "Local teen conquers Asperger's." Another friend commented, "You can't conquer what you ARE, and shouldn't have to."

Identity discussions aside, I have thought a lot about that statement.
posted by St. Hubbins at 7:33 PM on February 24, 2016 [6 favorites]

I feel this article on an existential level. As a woman, there's already performative pressures to how you present yourself to the world. As a Professional Disabled Woman (tm), it's like taking that feeling and launching it into orbit. But you can't be tired! (because then you're giving in to your disability!) Or angry! (because then you're just so bitter!). Ugh.

Basically I liked the article a lot and I'm going to look up her other writing now
posted by clavier at 7:57 PM on February 24, 2016 [12 favorites]

This was a really good article. It was great to see how happy and proud she looked in her wedding attendant outfit. Thanks for posting it.
posted by salvia at 10:25 PM on February 24, 2016 [2 favorites]

What a good writer! And everything she said in both articles resonates with me! I was trying to describe something like this the other day in an interview. Letting my freak flag fly is not only nice for my internal emotional comfort, it's also not a bad strategy some of the time to distract other people from all their weird reactions to visible disability. The simplest example is just that people can say they like my outfit, or my hair, or shoes, and they have something to talk about that isn't "What's wrong with you?" But a lot more is going on and much of it is about gender identity and disability queerness and class and race, and how we are expected to perform our cripple-ness.

On the other article, so agreed. It is so rare and pleasing when my (disabled) body is *good at something*..... and sometimes better than able bodied people's. I also really liked her description of Old Pain and New Pain. I hope to read more writing from Carrie -- on whatever she gets interested in.
posted by geeklizzard at 8:22 AM on March 1, 2016 [1 favorite]

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