Proper posture hurts.
When I align my spine correctly, I have to brace myself against a wall with my hands. My breathing comes short and I get dizzy. Sweat breaks out on my brow. Tears spring to my eyes. I can’t hold it for long.
I know I must hold proper posture. It is not relaxing for me, however. It is painful. It hurts to change my body from what it’s used to.
My spine curves to the right. If you look at how I stand in resting position, you’ll notice my right hip and my right shoulder bend towards each other, like lovers longing to touch. I’m twisted and gnarled like a wind-worn tree.
My hips are twisted the other way, too; not only up and down but front and back – they jut out on the right, pull back on the left. So standing correctly is not just a matter of separating my star-crossed shoulder and hip, making them learn the appropriate distance from each other, but it is also a matter of making my hips see my feet eye to eye — if they had eyes. Making them line up with the strong, straight legs that are among my best features.
I have had this incorrect posture since high school, I’m sure, though I’ve never really noticed it till this year, when my physiotherapist pointed it out to me. But for four years in high school I didn’t use a backpack. I used a shoulder bag that I carried on my left shoulder, and I hitched that shoulder up, to better carry the bag. I still carry bags on my left shoulder. I cannot carry them on my right. They slip off.
Now my spine has compressed; shrunk down in on itself, trying to make me smaller. To stretch it out again — to regain function in my crippled, gnarled body — I must maintain proper posture. I must re-learn, I must teach my flesh to change itself. I must breathe. I must regain muscle tone in my abdomen. I must focus, I must do this, or I will be a gnarled, bent tree forever.
It is depressing, and it is hard, and I feel hopeless much of the time. I feel resigned. Fuck it, I say. So I’m a crone fifty years too early. I was always quick to grow up. Give me my cane.
But then I remember — me reclaiming my health isn’t just for me. It’s for my family. They depend on me, you see. My Ogre needs to be healthier, too — because I worry about the amount of processed food poison he puts into himself; I worry he doesn’t take proper care of his gorgeous body, the body that carries the man I love, the body that is the man I love.
I worry about my Ogre, and gods, I love him so much sometimes I think I might die from it.
I know that if his Ogress does not show the initiative to take back zir youth — if I do not start taking steps towards being healthy — then he never will. So I must be strong, for my Ogre.
And someday, I want to have Ogrelets with him. With my body as crippled as it is, bearing those Ogrelets will be hard — especially if our babes are anywhere near the size we were as infants. I was 10 pounds, right on time; he was 7 pounds a month early. My Ogre is also known as Hagrid, or Fezzik, for good reason. I was called an Amazon by many who knew me, for a long time, for I am tall, large, and used to have quite a bit of strength.
My vagina is terrified of the future, when it must push out our monstrous
hellspawn, but not as scared as my spine. My whole body quakes in fear.
I must regain my strength so I can even have kids.
My mom, and my dog, Tyee the wolf-shepherd? I can’t even take care of Tyee by myself. I’m too sick, and he’s too strong and rambunctious. There’s a reason we call him the Awful Pawful. Which means I don’t get to see him unless mom can take him with her when she visits. Then, mom has to take him on walks — the last time I took him on a walk by myself I ended up napping the rest of the day, and that was before the spinal injury took me out this year.
Family is important to me. More important than most people guess, as I’ve spent so long talking about how much I hate it. But now that my family truly consists of the right people, I can be true to my nature. And my nature is that of a pack animal: I am a wolf, and I must do things for my pack. (Alpha bitch, naturally. Why would you ever think otherwise?)
More than all that — this is more Work. It’s always more Work. The Work never ends. My body, my land, and it belongs to Morrigan. Zie wants me to be healthy, to be fit. Zie wants the tree to stand tall, not cower before the elements.
I still need to reclaim bodily sovereignty, in many ways. This is one of them.
It’s time for Morag to put on zir big-fag panties, tie up zir Converse, and stretch this crippled
tree Ogress wolf I lost the metaphor body out.
I am on my way
I can go the distance
I don’t care how far
Somehow I’ll be strong
I know every mile
Will be worth my while
I would go most anywhere
To find where I belong.
**Yes. I did just quote Disney’s Hercules in a post about posture and my crippled body and my terrifying future and all the Work I do not want to do right now. Yes, this entire post was a build up to quoting those lines.
The song galvanizes me, ok? I regret nothing.