Tuesday, December 4, 2012
Am I Part of the Evil Plot?
I tried to make myself feel better by sitting down, calmly eating breakfast, and reading an article in a magazine (I know I'm supposed to pay attention to my food when I eat it, and banish distractions! I'm so sorry, Dr. Mike Dow! Don't hate me!). The problem was that the magazine in front of me was Vogue. Now, I started getting Vogue because my husband and I thought it would be really helpful to see professionally shot fashion ads, photoshoots, and styling. While a small portion of me has enjoyed it, a bigger portion feels absolutely ill as I struggle to push away feelings of inadequacy, guilt for eating ANYTHING, covetousness, dissatisfaction, and inferiority. I respect what the fashion world is trying to do, and I understand the vortex that must occur the second its tentacles latch onto your brain and pull you into unavoidable eventuality.
We've all heard that the "ladies in the magazines are airbrushed" blah, blah, blah. This is TOTALLY not a new topic. I, of all people, can understand that you want your product to look professional, glamorous, and desirable. Perhaps normal looking people with normal bodies are just not titillating. Perhaps it's similar to the fashion world...or politics, or law! Once you get into the system, you can be a revolutionary all you want, but you won't STAY in the system. The only way to swim with the fish you want to swim with would be to....well...swim in the same direction and manner. Thus, any magazine or company that wants to have even a fighting chance would have to bow down to the rules and conform to a certain extent, even to have any chance of exposure.
My insecurities while I read the magazine were heightened as I was foolhardy enough to actually READ one of the articles (why would you READ a fashion magazine, foolish girl!). The article was all about exciting new procedures to melt, freeze, and shrink away fat. The story followed a woman who was in extremely good shape, physically fit, and within 15 pounds of her ideal weight, but she JUST couldn't get that last damn inch off of her waist, no matter what she did. After looking into liposuction and deciding it might be too invasive, she opted for the method of freezing off the fat. She went in for a couple of extremely expensive sessions, and at the end of the article, she reported being pretty satisfied, with a bit of weight loss from diet and exercise, and a smaller dress size...however, the FULL inch hadn't come off, so she decided that she would go for the lipo.
Several things snapped in my brain. Be forewarned, I'm a passionate woman, and have opinions. Ahem, let me just first state that I LOVE the idea of taking care of your body, educating yourself on nutrition and fitness, and spending time and even money to help yourself feel your best. We all have drastically different levels of this, and it's really hard to tell someone that they're doing something "wrong" when they are so desperately yearning for this ideal image. With that being said, I hate the idea of being ENCOURAGED to live in this constant state of dissatisfaction with my body over such trivial little things as "having that little bit of belly" that you "just can't get rid of, no matter what you do" *giggle, giggle.* WHAT THE HELL! Maybe that "little bit of belly" won't go away because it's freaking supposed to be there! The magazine completely glamourized this attitude of chasing perfection and "having procedures" into oblivion! They made it seem that this was this woman's identity.
For the love, I don't even have enough time or energy to fully go into this right now! I have to get to the real point. This razor sharp shard of an idea sliced into my brain, and it paralyzed me with fear. It occurred to me that people might look at my company and products, and see the same message as was manifested in this selfish and worldly article! People might think that I was just telling women that they "weren't good enough" and that they "needed to buy something" to make that "last extra inch" go away! AAAHHHHHHHHHHH!
What if I was just a puzzle piece in this vast demonic plot to make women so caught up in hating themselves that they couldn't accomplish the good that they were sent to this earth to do! Such a horrifying idea!
I want to put it forth right here, right now that the WHOLE idea behind my company is the exact opposite of these glossy, malicious conformist magazines. I want to challenge women to look in the mirror and defiantly ENJOY what they see! I want them to be pleased and grateful for their magnificent bodies, and to glory in the unique shapes, textures, colors, and scars that they possess! It's my belief that if you start being compassionate and kind to your body, instead of comparing, condemning, and complaining about it, the correct NATURAL things will start to occur inside and out. This is a mental battle that I fight ever single dang day in my life, and I figure that if I can keep fighting it, I can help other women with the good fight too. I absolutely LOATHE even the idea that I might be anything akin to these companies that want you to feel eternally ugly so they can slap some more proverbial band-aids on your massive bleeding wounds that THEY THEMSELVES INFLICTED!
*sigh* Yup, it's all an uphill battle. There are SOO many days when I just think maybe I should give up and have my husband go and work a dry, bland job where we get normal paychecks and I can stay at home and live a "normal" life, whatever that is...(on the other hand, full-time stay-at-home moms have just as much of a job as working moms. Everyone has their different battles to fight.) Remember that part up there where I talked about women feeling like crap about themselves so that they wouldn't be able to fulfill their destinies? I truly believe that, with all of my heart! The more you yearn to do something grand, especially with humanitarian efforts, arts, music, science, or really ANYTHING that would benefit mankind, the more these evil forces whisper things into your brain about your failures and shortcomings. Seeing as I'm desperately trying to help women feel GOOD, which would mean the benefits would multiply exponentially and the whole world would change.....I certainly face my own demons.
With that being said, I have to humbly acknowledge the amazing support group of customers that my company has. I know that these women understand what I'm trying to convey, and I believe they want this great victory for women as well. You ladies (and gentlemen!) are just tremendous! I can literally touch the positive energy you send my way....as well as the cookies, chocolate, and thank you notes (I LOVE IT! old-fashioned and courteous!). It's completely cliche sounding....and that's okay, but I couldn't do it without you. Because of you, I can throw away the Vogue magazine, finish my freaking eggs, wipe away the tears, buck up, and sit at my sewing machine to pump out another corset.....and maybe....JUST MAYBE help another woman to stand tall in her beautiful body.