For my entire life, I wanted to be a performer. I danced from the age of 4, and then was cast in the Nutcracker for about five years slowly making my way up to prestigious roles. Our family home videos are testaments to my desire to be a comic; they show my aptitude for clowning around and making a room full of people laugh, mostly at me and not with me, but I loved it nonetheless. I remember the moment I saw Molly Shannon in Superstar while I was in second grade and I thought — in the romantic way movies portray love at first sight— that she was the most brilliant woman I’d ever seen and I would be like her. So I began mimicking Mary Katherine Gallagher and Sally O’Malley. I’d prance around the hallways of middle school making all the kids laugh and it felt like power.
This was what I wanted for my entire life.
That was until I got sick when I was 20 years old. This year marks seven years of dealing with chronic abdominal distention/bloating, daily loose stool, diarrhea, amenorrhea, and thyroid issues— to name a few. As I’ve written in earlier posts, I’ve been diagnosed with several different disorders, illnesses and ailments, many of which most doctors cannot tackle or don’t have the interest in trying to in the way that it demands: with time, effort, and original thinking.
It was a four month streak without my period again. Before it was four years. It shows up and then disappears. This time around I think it was because I ate no fats for five months. Well, I learned a valuable lesson. Eat your damn fats. Although, it wasn’t just fats I’m sure. I wonder how many times I can say the word fat in one paragraph. It’s sad that fat reminds me of a negative thing, a body thing, a weight thing. Fats are glory—in food and on my damn body.
I got my period this past Monday. I cried and laughed on the toilet as I stared at a bloody tissue like a primal greek goddess. In my head though, greek goddesses didn’t get a red, bloody period. I imagine it was like a gold dusty powder that just fell out of their beautiful porcelain vulva’s and dissipated into thin air. And that dissipated gold would reincarnate itself into everyone’s golden crowns and toga buckles. So essentially, little did the people know, they were all walking around with recycled menstrual gold strewn on their bodies and homes; a silent tribute to the yoni. Or did they know and love it? Perhaps the world was a place in which women’s dusty gold flow was a prized possession; when a woman didn’t menstruate it would cause a ruckus in the society and shake the foundation of their existence like a proverbial earthquake. Continue reading
My stomach churned from just a morsel of food. I’d take a bite and feel a sensation that left me urgently running to the bathroom. It was the stomach bug you wish you did not have, especially while traveling. My mom, a Moroccan native, raised us on all sorts of different foods, flavors and spices; I thought I was immune to turista. Still, I considered that after arriving in the Middle East, it may be a logical reaction given the circumstances: new place, new food, new water and new climate. I thought, “Please, for the love of god though, make it pass.”