I know, I know. International women’s day was JUST here and maybe it makes me less of a feminist or a traitor to my kind but seriously I just hate being a woman sometimes.
When you’re a single woman, you’re defined by such things as: career-driven success, sexual awareness, college degrees, if you model, where you live, if you have a boyfriend —
When you get engaged, you hear: how did he propose, how big is your ring, are you having a summer wedding, did you cry, how will you announce, who will your bridesmaids be and how will you ask them —
After you get married the silent questions of strangers are: how often do you have sex, does he post romantic, effortless, and natural sounding random things on Facebook about you, is he also a feminist, does he want kids right away, has the “honeymoon” phase worn off, do you guys fight now —
And of course after you have a baby: how did you give birth, was it natural, how long did you labor, what did you register for, how big is your baby, is she sitting up, is she smiling, is she rolling over, if so was it before mine, how much does she weigh now, can she talk yet, is she running because my 9 year old is running, does she speak 4 languages yet, oh you’re NOT getting vaccinated, does she sleep through the night, have her eyes changed color yet, and THE question – have you lost the baby weight —
Most people don’t come right out and say these but they are plastered all over our lives. I could throw up at how many times I’ve had women ask me if I want one of those wraps. Because I guess I look like the kind of person who is trying to “bounce back” in a hurry. Newsflash: babies. need. squish. They want boobs, real boobs to lay on. A soft tummy and nice floppy arms. They want to fall asleep on something they can sink into. But we are so obsessed with comparing ourselves to some other version of ourselves or other women that it feels like we’re doing something wrong if we don’t look like the “hot mom”.
I’m not condoning making unwise or unhealthy choices. Because we deserve to live well, and our bodies are worth taking care of. But real life mamas, they probably don’t have rock hard abs all the time. They just don’t. ********* Hey if you’re doing a workout program right now, or if you coach one, I’m not trying to be ugly. Because the world needs people like you. And there are a lot of mama’s who want and need some help getting things together again. You’re good people and keep it up.
I stepped on the scale the other day and I’m back in the 120’s, and I feel pretty great about that. And when I look at my belly, it’s still soft as a nice bowl of pudding, and I also feel pretty okay about that too. You know what I hate? I hate feeling like as soon as my personal growth is thrown out into the social media world, it’s combatted or surpassed by someone else’s bigger and better growth.
I don’t want people to know sometimes. I honestly don’t. Elena is such a good baby. She’s slept through the night since about 5 weeks. She was tongue tied and still figured out nursing like a champ. She has slept in her own room multiple times and doesn’t ever cry (unless that doggone pacifier falls out…), she naps on a schedule for usually over an hour and a half each time, I can bring her with me to any room I’m in and complete whatever housework I need to, she doesn’t hate being left alone, she loves people holding her but also is okay when they don’t, she likes sleeping on her own, she loves baths and showers and doesn’t even cry if water gets on her face, she loves our animals and she loves us so much – and I can feel she knows she is loved. But. Our lives are not perfect.
But the second that you tell the world all of your good news, you feel guilty. Or you get comments like, “just wait until the second gets here”. Or your friends don’t comment or like your statuses because it makes them feel bad if their baby doesn’t do that. Why do our lives revolve around the success or demise of other people to the extent that we can’t be happy for our sisters when good things happen to them.
Because yeah I stepped on that scale and saw a number that I liked. But 6 months ago when I was in the throes of late pregnancy, with the Alabama sun giving me real bad under boob sweat, I wasn’t liking the number I saw. But guess what. Literally every woman in the world feels like that about something. Big freaking deal.
Why can’t we laugh at the struggles in our own lives and push them aside when someone needs our support more. This is when I hate the Instagram world so much. These beautiful women who post beautifully posed and edited pictures of their lives, with or without kids – the message is the same. It has created this bubble of lies that we all fall into. This need to be a perfectly edited picture. Not real. Not with acne, not with bed head hair that doesn’t look cute, not with clothes that don’t fit us yet.
This need for women to be a certain way and look a certain way and present themselves in a certain way, we want to say it’s because of men but it’s not. We do this to ourselves and each other.
Enough. Just enough of it, already. Honestly I could care less about how far you got in college. Why? Because it’s your business not mine. I think it’s awesome that your baby was born with a full set of adult teeth and speaking complex sentences. Whatever. It literally means nothing about my baby or my life. I don’t care if you go out and model on the weekends and I don’t. Why? Because why should I care.
I think we are so far away from loving each other. We present this “feminism” idea of supporting and empowering one another but I have never in my life encountered so many women on a regular basis that struggle with depression and/or anxiety.
Would it be so impossible to just be a blank slate. Be friendly to each other, love on each other, support one another’s success and don’t try to make it about yourself. Can we try to not be so insecure in our own strengths that we have to tear apart other women’s fears in order to make our own not seem so scary.
I recently visited a good friend of mine in Colorado who was getting married. Phil was working so I went by myself and let me tell you I felt like a baby whose blankie had been taken away. I talked about Phil so much that I’m sure everyone felt they knew him personally. By the time I left though I felt more self-confident and beautiful then I had in a really long time. Read the rest of this entry »
Eating Healthy. Well it just sucks half the time doesn’t it? With bikini season coming up, I have started to become all-too aware of the little edges of my body that need fine tuning. Who even started the bikini fad anyhow? I know several women who aren’t too keen on getting body parts waxed every three weeks JUST to not have stubble in places that shouldn’t be looked at that close anyhow! And yet on every social media account I have there is a wave of treadmills, workout ponytails, and headphone selfies to drive any woman mad with panic. Beach season is a HUGE season for jealousy and competition with women. Who has the cuter clothes, who looks better in shorter dresses, who has the most perfect pictures with their tanned and 6-packed boyfriends, who has the skimpier (but she can get away with it) 2-piece…. it makes me feel like I’m watching the “pizza and beer” scene from Miss Congeniality all over again. And ironically, those happen to be two of my most beloved food groups.
So I hope I don’t seem rude or come across as inconsiderate, but I think the whole thing is a bunch of bologna (there’s a pun to be found in there somewhere). I think that there is a craze, and the need to be thin, tan, beautiful, and charming with a mint mojito in my hand is a bit ridiculous. Maybe this isn’t a real thing anymore and maybe girls don’t think this every time they step on a scale, but I know the last time I stared at myself in the mirror, this is what I felt… so if there’s just one other girl in the world who feels like I do – sister, I’ve got your back. And I think this is a really dumb problem, because I would really love to enjoy my summer and not worry about if the little dimples in my legs. And yes, although I thought my mom was lying to make me feel better, we do all get those dimples at some point.
Okay, so here’s where I’m going. I think that we are missing the point. Girls, it’s not hard to find a blog or a t-shirt, or a Twitter site or a Facebook post nowadays that doesn’t affirm us as beautiful, individual, independent and unique human beings, but out of all of those words… how many do we believe. Well, I guess I’ll speak for myself, how many do I believe. Do I really think that I’m fearfully and wonderfully made, for that matter do I even know what that means?! I know that if I sit in church and listen to my Pastor talk about the heart of a woman, how special we are, how needed we are, then I walk away with a little bounce in my step and feeling like the world is my oyster.
But… when I look at myself and wish my boobs were bigger, or that my hair would be either be straight OR curly but cut it out on being both, when I reject what I see and wish I had something else… I’m calling God a liar. And I’m saying that what He made isn’t good enough, and I want to change it, I want it bigger, or smaller, or thinner, or plumper… I want to be a different me. If you created a person, if you put time and effort and sweat and blood* into this person, put your dreams and hopes and desires and made them so special, and then watched them turn around and look at you and say,
“I’m sorry, I know you made this but it just isn’t good enough.”
Well, how would you feel.
Not to get super serious, or make this a downer, but honestly can we all agree that if you believe you were made in the image of God, that MAYBE you should just chill out a little? Now this doesn’t go to say that if you are unhealthy or drinking ten shots of tequila every night that you should be surprised to see a little extra baggage, and in such case some exercise would be advised. But my point is, we’re looking at it all wrong! We should be loving ourselves first! And then looking at the areas of our lives that need work. Because even if it couldn’t hurt for me to lose a couple pounds, if I hate myself… it’s gonna take a whole lot longer. And feeling happy releases chemicals in your body which speed up your metabolism. It’s science. Boom.
I think the focus should stop being on the external and start (or keep on) being on the internal. And when I stand before myself in the mirror, accepting myself for everything that I am, and am not. Be flirty with yourself every once in awhile. It may feel really silly to wink at yourself or admire that little thing you got going on there, but do it!
Life IS actually really short, and I want to say and do things that matter. And also one more thought, that girl who was sitting next to you who kiiinnnnddd of gave you a dirty look so you gave her one back and now you two are on the fast track for mutual evaluation and annihilation, why not practice something different. I have found that the first look you give to someone is very important, and if you smile at someone, chances are, they’re gonna smile back. I mean seriously girls, it’s really easy for us all to be friends, and who really cares about the guy who designed your purse anyway.
*I don’t actually know if God has sweat or blood. But if He does, I’m sure it smells of mahogany and pine trees… His sweat that is, I don’t think His blood would smell like anything. That would be weird. Unless it does…. Eh… I’ll just leave that up to you to decide.