Archives for posts with tag: weight

Hi there – happy holidays and all of that! I miss you all, and the strange thing is, I literally think about writing a post everyday. Seriously. I think those thoughts really strong and loud and hard and then continue to ignore the action that would require me logging in and, you know, writing anything down.

That’s actually kind of how things are going right now – I know when I last wrote back in August, I spoke about how hard everything was. Well, since then, things are still pretty hard – harder, in some ways.

My partner lost her job, so now my freelancing is our sole support system. Hence my bloody bloody fingers from making websites happen all day. And my lack of desire to type anything else when I could be drinking a gin/craft beer instead. (Keewanah Brewery? Michigan folks? Know what I’m sayin’?)

My weight is all over the place, but that place is mostly heading up, which is a HUGE, suffocating, mind-consuming problem for me.  I’m working on it, but I’m in that spin where I can only focus on either fitness or eating healthy on any given day, but I need to be doing both to make a difference. Don’t you hate when you know what you should be doing, but that should is what makes you just want to curl up and die?

On the upside, my gigantic 9 month old puppy now loves his walks. Small victories. 🙂

On the HUGE UPSIDE: I booked, and shot, and was paid to be on, a TV pilot. 

You read it right – I FINALLY BOOKED A TV GIG. Coming this Spring. New pilot – Jennifer Falls – from a veritable A-team of Hollywood folks, including headliner Jaime Pressly (of My Name is Earl Emmy-winning fame) and the wonderful Missy Pyle (of many many things, my favorite of which is Dodgeball. No lies.).  Hopefully the series will take off, because there is a teeny tiny chance my character could be seen more than once – I have a name and lines and a whole lesbian softball team with custom uniforms and everything. Sandy the lesbian softball captain. That’s me on TV.

I will write more about that soon. Because I will write more soon. Truth.

How are you all doing? Tell me your sordid holiday drama!

Butch Wonders had a nice post a few days ago talking about body image and butchness and how that all ties together, and it melded with where my head’s been lately so I wanted to post a few thoughts. I am one of those who can’t separate my physical body from my perception of my own identity (I’ve met quite a few folks who can do this sleight-of-mind thing beautifully, though). It’s why I have moved away from my trans identity – back in the days when I was trying to pass, I realized that I just wouldn’t without hormone treatment, which I’m not into. And thus – I’d rather just deal with being female-bodied and butch than try endlessly to look male-bodied. My own compromise.

Where I get my brain into trouble is with my weight. A few years ago, I lost a lot of weight without really trying – just about 40 pounds. It was amazing, and spurred a whole new revolution in my wardrobe, moving me from oversized plaid shirt and cargo pants into slimmer cut trousers and shirts with vests and ties. Because I gain weight in my chest and stomach, I can’t wear men’s shirts that fit my shoulders unless I’m pretty slim, so it was great to get down to that level and back into clothes that made me feel powerful.

The debacle of the ridiculous musical put me in such a stressed out place that I gained some of this weight back recently, even though I had kept it under control for more than three years. I just defaulted into no exercise/bad eating/bad sleeping/bad stressing and three months later I’m carrying back 15lbs. Fifteen pounds of armor, and of particularly butch armor. My need to protect myself totally took over my body – my need to appear bigger and stronger than I am on a daily basis let itself settle around my belt. And now I’m in that limbo of ‘trying’ to lose weight, which makes me come to terms with how scary it is for me to really be thinner. Because then I have to face my female body in a different way. That my shoulders slope even though I’m pretty broad, and that my chest could crush a small island nation, despite the reduction surgery I had almost 12 years ago. That my eyes are distinctly feminine when my face thins out and makes them fuller. And that if I have my weight under control, then my acting career might actually start to be something more than just a wish and a website and a bunch of student loans.

I’m back on the eating plan with some tweaks to take into account that I’m older and tired-er now. I’m back to my interval training and even started doing some kettlebell swings again – muscle training that I love because it takes like one minute to wear yourself out.

Here’s to the struggle to become the body we want to be. If all goes well in 2 months I’ll be on track again, maybe a bit curvier but also back in my vests and ties and, along with the clothing, back in my self-confidence. Armor-free.

...except that I'm not.

I’ve been so stressed out lately about career things, like “Is it a career if NONE of my income is coming from it?…” and suchlike. Little things, really, if you can find even an iota of perspective. Trouble is, my perspective is making me a bit dizzy. I feel like I’m on the crest of some huge wave and desperately trying to ride it without wiping out.  Not flailing, but not in control, and not entirely convinced that releasing my tiny human non-power into the mighty crushing all-power of the wave (or, the universe) is a good idea.  Breathe.  So many things are in flux that I have to constantly stop and remind myself what I’m doing here and what the end goals are.

I moved here to be a butch performer, pretty or otherwise.  I lost weight to be a more present person, more mindful in my body.  Combine the two and you get a few things I didn’t bargain for.

I didn’t bargain that by losing weight I might be un-typing myself. Seriously – it didn’t even cross my mind that being heavy played into this ridiculous butch stereotype of masculine women being huge and intimidating.  I figured being almost six feet tall and considerably broad would suffice without the double chin.  Apparently the double chin was the deal.

I didn’t bargain that I would have forgotten how to dress a thinner body.  Insecurities I’ve masked for almost ten years are resurfacing each time I look in the mirror.

I’m dealing for the first time in my life with something that’s probably rather obvious in most people’s lives. When I let myself get fat, I masked my femininity in weight. It’s easy to wear men’s clothes when you’re so heavy you have no curves. It’s easy to write off being queer and fat and into being masculine because that’s just how it goes.  But nowadays I’m trying to outfit my feminine body while hanging onto my butch identity.  I’m suddenly confronted with my own body in a new way – having lost 40+ lbs, I have *curves* again. A waist and hips that are two separate entities.  The men’s pants don’t fit anymore. The men’s shoes look huge on my skinny narrow feet.  But the men’s style is still *my* style.  Cute hybrid “boyfriend” clothes are cut for women eight inches shorter than I am and 50 pounds lighter still.  But menswear looks too blocky and ill-defined.

I’ve been searching for a happy medium, I’ve taken a few things to the tailor, and I’m trying to expand my frame of reference with clothing. Try on new things.  Figure out my new size without abandoning the only identity that’s ever been a comfort (even when it’s been a problem, an embarrassment, or a curse).

Strange fascination, fascinatin’ me

Ah Changes are taking the pace that I’m going through

sweet kate. ridiculous film.


(Something from September 2010)

I moved to LA for several reasons: one, to truly admit, for the first time in my life, that I am an actor and therefore need to do as the actors do.  Not become another cookie-cutter, Stepford actor, but rather to make my daily business the business of being an actor.   The second reason for my move was to find a better source of income (read: day job) whilst pursuing the business of acting, and since the best I could do in the Emerald Triangle was a 2-hour per week grunt job cleaning the sinks at a bakery for minimum wage, I figured a change of location was in order.

As usual when I first make a decision, the universe conspired to shower me with wonder and opportunities and fluffy kittens and the feathers of white doves.  I immediately began to be called in for auditions in LA that I was self-submitting for. I found a great and relatively cheap place to live with interesting, intelligent roommates. I effortlessly booked myself theater gigs for the entire first year of my move, which didn’t pay me much, but which validated the fact that I was ready to be a professional performer in a way I had never before embraced.

I moved here to fully be myself in a way I have been avoiding for over twenty years.  This involved grappling with the fact that I’m (gasp!) still queer, and that when I moved I was fairly overweight (roughly the size and shape of a baby killer whale, but who’s counting).  Stir those two in a big pot called “But I’m A Performer” and you get a freshly baked batch of insecurity drizzled with a crippling debt-to-income ratio.

But the doors continued to open – because I saw and continue to see a niche I can fit into; one that I can dominate. I will rant about the overall treatment of butch women by society in another post, but the point is that I have been watching the trends, folks, and there just aren’t many of us on tv or in films or shows.  But with the popularity of Ellen, the inestimable Rachel Maddow, Julie Goldman, Jane Lynch – all women who are not exactly the Hollywood feminine stereotype – I think things will soon be changing.  At least, I hope, and think it’s a valid hope.

Combine those ladies’ popularity with the surging numbers of lesbian characters in the media and eventually someone is going to want to put a few women who look like the rest of us in front of the camera.  And while I may not look like an “every-Woman”, I make a darn convincing lesbian on screen. 10 out of 10 viewing lesbians agree (totally biased unofficial poll amongst my friends).

And I’m not saying that I only want to play lesbian parts – at this point I want a chance to play ANY parts – but that would fulfill a huge dream of mine.  To play a lesbian character who actually looks like a real lesbian.  Sure, I can and will have a satisfying career playing park rangers and female prisoners and nurses and cops, but I believe the writers and CDs and producers are ready to take a challenge.  Put me in the ring.  The tides are shifting that way.  I know how to throw a few punches, and I may get clobbered, but I’m a big girl and I have to try.  Yes, I’m sticking my neck out by making this claim, hoping this hope, and trying to do it my way.  I owe it to the Myself I am working on being.