My pictures this week are reflections and windows. Seeing inside or out. Surfaces opaque and translucent. For some reason I have been attracted to them and their depth. It fits my theme. I was asked by a close friend to reflect on self-image. She inquired why I don't doll up anymore. Wear the stylish clothes, polish the nails, and sport hairdos. I'm sure she thought better of asking about my unshaven legs, the wild eye-brows, and ever lasting bed-head. I DID brush my hair that day but only after I napped with it wet, which proved I showered too. Never mind my black sweat pants that proudly show each and every one of my dog's white hairs. And oops...my socks don't match. So I'm asking myself? What really happened?
Some extra weight, some good old-fashioned modesty and an amazing since of LIBERATION! I'm exhausted from YEARS of expensive nail salons, clothes, purses, heels, boots, socks, 9 million pairs of flip flops, hair extensions, jewelry, hose, and extreme tanning. Painful bleaching, tweezing and waxing. Skinny jeans, plastic surgery, itchy contacts and don't even get me started on lacy thongs. I once glued and taped myself into an evening gown for a pageant. I even shaved my toes as they sported FAKE toenails! I realized I felt as though I were worth nothing but my looks and what I could use them to get. I remember feeling overwhelming panic that everyone in the world may not see me as attractive. Expensive diet pills, painful workouts, sharpie eye liners, and illicit use of stimulants. I remember "spray" tanning at least once a week to mask my unhealthy ways. None of it worked for long. My dreams never came true, I didn't get my way, someone else 'got the guy' and most devastatingly, I was a covering up all that I really was. That's NOT to say that any of these beauty treatments are "wrong", they just didn't work for what I was seeking. (a sense of well-being and realistic self-acceptance)
I'm not sure when I started to change. I sport an extra 30 pounds since giving up most of the rituals above. Its part of why I don't feel the need to strut my cellulite in a miniskirt anymore. At the same time, I'm OK with it if I have some arm fat showing when I wear a tank top. I think God kept some weight on me so I had to look at myself in a different light. My eating habits could not be tamed without the drugs I gave up. What choice did I have? Importantly, I have noticed that I'm a little more than OK with NOT attracting sexual attention from men. I had a lot of help with this part from others on this same spiritual journey. I just don't crave it anymore. It has simplified my life dramatically. I don't pluck my eyebrows and I only shave my legs when I feel like it. I don't dye my hair because its just too much work and I'm kinda lazy. I still like to tan though and dance. I will always love to dance.
I'm lucky and blessed with the way God worked things out for me. Against all odds, the man I plan to marry next month TRULY thinks I'm gorgeous. Weather I'm in an evening gown at 120 pounds, or a sick wretch with swollen eyes from hay fever; I can see it in his eyes that he sees no difference. Did HE make me ok with myself? No. It came before him with NOT SO HARD work on myself and TONS of help and support from other WOMEN. I was just plain LUCKY to find him. My overhaul was NOT physical. It was and is spiritual and ongoing. My relationship with Jerry is the icing on the cake. The golden egg in the Easter Egg hunt. I didn't have to hunt for it. I sorta tripped over it and recognized it was golden.
I am consumed with self-improvement on the inside. New dreams have been re-awakened. My goals are different now. I like to get dirty and play with snakes. With or without make-up...On me or the snakes. Do I have dreams of sporting nice clothes as I work in my dream studio or on location? Always. Do I wanna wear SOME of the clothes that hang all lonely in my closet (the jeans that wont go past my knees)? Yes. I'm still human and still a woman. Do I get a little envious when I see someone look FABULOUS in a bikini? Of course. Am I gonna beat myself up to be someone else? No. Will I dye my hair? Maybe. But I have far more important things to focus on...like grocery shopping in my pajamas, and I don't have time for a broken nail.