This whole topic is so utterly ridiculous when put into perspective, but it's been on my mind a lot this last week. I sat down to look at all of the photos we took at our dear friends' wedding this past weekend in Mendocino, but I just keep coming back to this shot. My suitcase being filled with two types of things: outrageously clowny accent pieces/garments and seven black dresses.
This is where I'm at now, over a year after writing about being inspired by my own closet to get into shape. Dragging a suitcase stuffed with "options" to a super fun weekend away with old friends (not a single pant to be found in that bag, by the way), but none of the options were fun. David officiated the wedding on a beach, and I so wanted to match the flossiness of my children and my husband, and all the super-talented and lovely friends at the wedding with us. But out of seven inappropriate-for-the-setting black dresses there was only one dress that actually fit. So that's what I wore.
I don't know if I'm alone in this, but I can get to feeling really great about myself when I get dolled up. I can feel like I am the best looking lady in the room sometimes. This might be my massive ego's fault, but it happens. I forget about the numbers on our scale, remember the times I've been called pretty in the past, and head on out to strut my stuff. But then the photos. They SHOCK me. SHOCK ME.
Middle age has hit me like a brick. This is not news, you hear this sort of thing all the time. I have learned to love myself and others so much more than when I was younger, it feels so surreal to not have the appearance that corresponds with all of that. Having a baby at 40 years old was hard on my body (but does make me feel younger in my heart, that's for sure). Things are giving out here and there due to my massive sugar addiction, which now ebbs and flows but has been just terrible over the last five years. Sitting in front of the computer writing instead of taking an hour to work out has probably been a bad choice in the long run. I need a long run!
The real sign for me that I am not wearing this weight well is the photos. I haven't seen a candid shot of myself that didn't make me cringe in so, so long. This is the huge red flag for me.
I'm influenced by two worlds. The burlesque world is so accepting of any body type (although I am not so sure it is immune to ageism, we shall see). It doesn't matter your size. In fact, it might actually WOW the crowd more to see a larger lady dance. Burlesque (and all the costumes and full makeup) has been a giant gift to me in that regard. Backstage at shows I actually find myself wishing I was bigger! I'm a little bit middle-of-the-road compared to the ladies I frequently perform with. Some of my burlesque friends are much larger than me, but they don't carry weight in their face like I do, the thing that bothers me the most.
Then there is the push-back from uber-gorgeous and fit San Francisco. Almost none of our friends are built like me. I have gotten really good at blocking out the thoughts that go through my head when I am "amongst the thin", but it is hard. Keeping my chin(s) up for Stella is always of utmost importance, although I have faltered on occasion. I try to always stress that I am trying to eat better for my health, not my weight, when it comes up.
I dunno. I am so tired of years and years of beating myself up. I have only two options. Full acceptance, or change. It feels so hypocritical to not get on the full acceptance wagon. I dance with ladies who are just SO DAMN BEAUTIFUL it doesn't matter what their size is. Really. REALLY I feel that way. But I'm not those ladies. Even all of this body-loving burlesque hasn't exorcized society's demons. I feel guilty about that. I don't have those sorts of feelings about anyone's body but my own, but I am definitely a hypocrite.
If not acceptance, than change. What will be the silver bullet to get healthier again? Is it writing this essay? Is it the feeling I get when I remember trying on seven black dresses in a panic last weekend? I always thought my 40's would be better than my 30's, but in this area they are not. It literally feels like running out of time now. I am tired of chasing this. I need to step up or just let it go.
Vanity. I can't bring myself to share the photo that was the straw that broke this camel's back right now, which is sad, because it's me and Stella at the wedding, having a ball. Maybe someday it'll be a "before" photo.
Enough about me. Hahahahahahahahahaha, this blog is all about me. Thank you for listening, and have a wonderful weekend. Oh, don't forget to enter the latest GIVEAWAY. It's not just donut pans direct from the manufacturer, I'll also be sending the winner a small assortment of the donut ideas we've made so far! xoxo