Tuesday, May 22, 2012

body image

this is a side note....i was surfing channels today while eating lunch (hiding from the whiny sick kids for a few minutes of peace and quiet) and i stumbled upon "say yes to the dress: bridesmaids". i've watched "say yes to the dress" before but i stopped watching it most of the time because it always makes me kind of sad. anyhow, i stopped and watched today because i didn't see anything else remotely interesting on and i only planned on watching for a few minutes anyhow...

so, to the point of my story here, there was a bride who had brought her 2 daughters with her. this was obviously a second wedding and she wanted her daughters to be her bridesmaids. the older daughter was just out of college and had been a college athlete. now that she was no longer an athlete her body had changed a lot and she just wasn't comfortable in her own skin yet! (i understand that feeling soooooo well! i was never an athlete, but any body change can make you feel that way i think!) so she was really struggling with finding a dress that she felt comfortable in, and especially one that made her feel pretty.

it brought back to my mind my own wedding dress shopping...well actually most shopping trips. (this is why i don't watch these shows often) when i was wedding dress shopping i had one day that i could go with my mom and my sisters. i lived 12 hrs away from my mom and i had already asked one of my sisters to make my dress for me. i had an idea of what i wanted and i didn't really see a need to try any on because i did not intend to buy one. my sister, however, wanted me to try some on so she could get a better idea of what looked good on me.

so we went to a store and i tried on a couple of dresses. since i was at that time a size 20-22 there was nothing on the rack that fit me correctly, and that was incredibly embarrassing! especially because my 2 sisters that were sitting there were honestly like a size 0. i did not feel pretty and i knew i would not feel pretty in anything that store had to offer under the circumstances. some other things occurred during that shopping trip which reinforced those feelings and in the interest of not hurting anyone's feelings i will leave out those details. my feelings were hurt and i was even more convinced that the only way i could possibly have a nice dress and not feel like a fat pig was if my sister made the dress for me. (that way i didn't have to try on dresses that were way too small for me and only held on by clips and then try to imagine what it would look like in the correct size) so my sister made my dress and i loved it. i felt beautiful in it and i had no regrets.

a couple of years ago as i started this weight loss journey i was watching one wedding show or another and i was feeling very envious of the girls who were being waited on and who were encouraged to try dress after dress until "the" dress was found. i was envious of the attention and the opportunity to feel like a queen....i decided to try my wedding dress on because i was regretting not spending more time dress shopping and since i don't plan on ever having another wedding that is a lost opportunity in my view. i am happy to say that when i put my dress on i still felt that wonderful love and giddiness that i had when i first got the dress from my sister and when i got married in it. even though the dress is now far too big for me to wear the feeling was still there! i'm grateful for that, but i still wish that i would have taken the steps to be more comfortable in my own skin regardless of my size so that i could have had that experience at a wedding dress store. i'm sure i would have still had my sister make my dress...but i would have the experience anyhow. does that make sense?

i've watched plenty of hefty brides glow on tv as they found the perfect dress....i wish i had banished some of the emotional demons that were still haunting me at that time. i'm still working on banishing some of them even though i'm pretty much at my goal weight now and i feel much better about my body. it's a long process...

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