well, i really can't get this off my mind. lately i've been thinking a lot about image. i think it started in february when grant and i were spending a lot of time in airports. naturally, i would head to the magazine/book store and check out what looked interesting. i remember waiting in the fort lauderdale airport to head back from the cruise. we spent like 12 hours there. ya. it was a really long day. grant had lost his phone on some caribbean island and so our only form of communication, if we separated, was to use our walkie talkies. i left to go get us some food and while waiting for it to cook (chili's to go, chips and salsa + their yummy cheese dip), i headed over to check out some magazines. i counted over 15 magazines. that had at least something on the cover that went something like this "how to get a celebrity body" "3 minute abs" "2010 bikini body countdown" "lose weight without even dieting!" "a sexier body in just 30 minutes a day" "how to get a sexier body". i mean i really could go on and on. that isn't even the half of it. i immediately paged grant, "hey babe, can i tell you how GAY the country we live in is??", he laughed and said "of course", i then proceeded to read every cover i saw that had any featuring article relating to how to lose weight quick or how we can be sexier (because obviously those are hands down, the most important things we need to achieve in this life). i think everyone was wondering what i was doing but i definitely didn't care. my desire to make a point completely overrode any embarrassment i had. i mean it infuriates me. and then it was just last week, i was taking a small break at work in the back. i was finally able to pull out my instyle for the month and feed my brain. because fashion is the career i chose, my passion and hobby. anyone who reads magazines knows that the first 20 pages are just advertisements for designers. as i was flipping through, page after page with the usual.. michael kors, then guess, calvin klein, gucci... etc. I COULD NOT BELIEVE MY OWN EYES!!! every single spread was absolutely disgusting and offensive. the calvin klein ones were definitely making me the most upset, with eva mendez laying on the ground while a man's hands looked as if they are about to pull up her mini skirt. i mean it looks as if he is practically going to rape her. yes that sounds a little dramatic but that is really what it looks like. i sat there thinking about the kinds of messages the image was projecting and i wanted to cry. i'm so sick of the media for this reason. not just because of the obvious facts:
it crushes the value of women and completely demoralizes us and even encourages men to love us for only that reason. but the reason why it makes me so upset is that WOMEN ARE SO NOT AWARE OF HOW LOOKING AT PICTURES LIKE THESE AFFECTS THEIR SELF ESTEEM TO THE VERY CORE. i have seen in my own life, friends who are immediately depressed after watching or reading something ("why don't i look like this? why can't my legs look like that")(i mean who doesn't do that? especially when we see fake images like this). i guess the point i want to make is that very rarely do you just happen to be in a bad mood. thoughts create moods. THOUGHTS CREATE MOODS. thoughts create moods! now to expound on this a little more let me just give you a math equation. i have learned over the years that....
pms + brittany marie barnes = no self esteem.
surround myself with positive things when my spirits are low.
on our way to haiti, i had pms. i went to the magazine store. looked at marie claire, instyle, lucky, shape, vogue, blah blah blah. noticed my thoughts and predicted future mood. grabbed real simple instead.
i finished the magazine with a kiss on grant's cheek. i felt inspired to budget my money, try some new chicken recipes, cherish my relationship with grant (loved the fabulous article, "secrets of staying happily married"), try yoga this month and organize my crafts and tools. moral of the story? stop reading things that you know will make you feel sad afterwards.
i was talking to a dear friend of mine and i was explaining to her that i feel self conscious about how passionate i am about this stuff. i expressed to her that sometimes i feel that i am from a different generation, nobody my age seems to get as upset as me about this stuff (okay, there are a few). she said to me that she thinks it should be something that i am proud of. it is something that makes up who i am. it warmed my heart to hear that and i think writing this post is another step in accepting it about myself. i love that i have very intimate feelings about a woman's worth. i chose to be a wardrobe stylist not because i am just oh my gosh like so obsessed with like juicy couture but because i believe that every woman is beautiful and i want to help women and show them that. we are worth so much. and to end my testimony, i read the following on this blog yesterday and couldn't stop thinking about it. it really gave me chills. and since i do believe in giving credit where it is due, let it be known that i copied this straight form her blog.
for you women, here is something to ponder:
if i were satan and wanted to destroy a society, i think i would stage a full-blown blitz on women. i would keep them so distraught and distracted that they would never find the calming strength and serenity for which their [gender] has always been known.
satan has effectively done that, catching us in the crunch of trying to be superhuman instead of striving to reach our unique, God-given potential within such diversity. He tauntingly teases us that if we don't have it all- fame, fortune, families, and fun, and have it all the time- we have been short-changed and are second-class citizens in the race of life. as [women] we are struggling, our families struggling, and our society is struggling. drugs, teenage pregnancies, divorce, family violence and suicide are some of the ever-increasing side effects of our collective life in the express lane.
too many of us are struggling and suffering, too many are running faster than they have strength, expecting too much of themselves.
and my favorite line--
... we must have the courage to be imperfect while striving for perfection.
read more here.