Femme, queer, fat, mid-thirties, writer, Unlikely Hiker. I always considered myself an indoor kid, a city kid. For a long time, I was a party girl and DJ. In 2012, an accidental hike led to an unlikely discovery. Hiking became my therapy, my church, my medicine. Nature feels like the only place I can turn down the noise in my head and disengage with the harmful dominant culture. I can take up as much space as I want and also revel in the minuteness of my existence. This is such a gift.
The healing power of exercise was totally unexpected. Body-negative culture and the moral capital it puts on “good bodies” and “bad bodies” mostly ruined the idea of it for me. We are told we can exercise to “fix” ourselves and achieve unrealistic body goals. We aren’t told it just feels good. It makes our bodies work better, our minds clearer, our sleep better. It’s meditative. It can even be a spiritual practice.
Most nature blogs seem to keep it light, polite, apolitical, family friendly. There’s nothing wrong with that, generally, but there’s so much of it and so little else. Through sharing my personal writing along with the resources I find on diversifying the outdoors, I hope to bust up tired ideas of what an outdoorsperson looks like. I aim to put a spotlight on diversity, inclusion and visibility and show anyone how to heal their lives mentally, spiritually and physically with nature.
-Jenny Bruso (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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