In Sweden we take Midsummer very seriously and the celebrations are up there with Christmas and Easter. Midsummer nights eve was on Friday (that’s when we have all the celebrations), and the longest day of the year was this Sunday. Since I was all busy with preparations, this post is a tad bit delayed. So, just for fun, this is an extract of Swedish midsummer celebrations: we meet with family and friends for lunch with pickled herring, fresh potatoes, sourcream and chives. Strawberries and cream for dessert. Then we decorate a giant, upside down phallus with leafs and flowers and dance around it, preferably in folk costume. One of the favorite dances are “little frogs” where you mimic a frog. This is a symbol of the fertilization of the earth and is mostly a pre-christian celebration but the church did its best to make it tolerable when they realized they couldn’t stop the celebration all together. In the evening we eat more pickled herring or have a barbecue. For dessert either strawberries with cream or a strawberry cake with cream. Then we continue to party all night. Normal weather for this celebration is 13 degrees Celsius and rain (daytime). But we’re tough, we only celebrate outdoors. In summer clothes. With a lot of blankets. And an umbrella/canopy. It’s like we all collectively say “it IS midsummer and we WILL celebrate that it is SUMMER!”
Now to the things I was really meaning to write about.
I’ve got a brand new relationship with my body. I haven’t had shorts or tank tops since I was a child and bought my very first shorts as a grownup in August. Those shorts cover my knees, so I’m not sure they classify as shorts or some kind of high-water jeans. Just the thought of wearing something shorter than that has previously triggered my anxiety badly, but today I found myself thinking about buying some proper shorts that won’t fall of my hips (I guess I’ve lost some weight over the year). And since summer arrived this week I’ve even contemplated over the possibility to buy a tank top. It was unthinkable for me to show myself in public in a tank top a year ago, but something’s changed.
As a “woman” I always refused to shave, hey I was born with it after all, but at the same time I felt ashamed to show it to the world and covered up. Now I see the small amount of hair that I’ve got as manly, and something to be proud of – and definitely not something to cover up. The only reason for me to be ashamed of my hairiness today would be because I’ve got too little hair on my body. But I won’t feel shame. I’m just part of the natural variations of hairiness. Some people have lots of hair, some have none. I’m leaning to the sparsely haired kind at the moment (I hope T will change that a little) but as a man I don’t have to stand accountable for the hairs or non existing hairs on my body. If someone care they really shouldn’t, it’s offensive to express opinions of other people’s bodies. At least when it come to men’s bodies. In my opinion gender shouldn’t matter when it comes to this, but unfortunately it does. For now, showing my hairy legs and armpits is just another gender marker that will help people gender me correctly.
Does anyone have any tips on binders that will work as a tank top? It would be nice to be able to show myself in a tank top on the few hot days we get here, layering with a binder feels a bit awkward.