Say cheese!

In my travels and many deep discussions with friends I have realized that I am not alone in this trap that lies waiting in my mind…

I’m putting all y’all on blast!
(just kidding!)

The most interesting thing about this quest that I’ve started is learning that these feelings and barriers Ive struggled with are not isolated only to me.  I’ve been truly thinking to myself that everyone has got it all together and since I’m so overweight I just have to go ahead and endure and deal with it until I can either lose it or die.  No wonder I lived in such despair! That attitude was literally killing me.

What is it that makes us treat ourselves so harshly?  Makes us dart to get out of a picture or cringe if someone should capture us in a video clip? I’m a big girl, not really known for my cat like reflexes, and if someone is recording a video I instantly become a freaking ninja of the night.  One step ahead of the camera man like I’m the CIA or something.
My four year old daughter believes she is beautiful. We tell her all the time. We tell her how smart and funny she is.  I started thinking, at what point will she learn what all of us gals learned?  At what point will my baby girl start to look at herself in the mirror and find fault? I look at her sweet little round face and see perfection.  I see her little sassy expressions and it makes me smile.
I shudder to think, “What have I already taught her?”

A wonderful friend of mine had me read an article about how women learn at some point to loathe a camera.  It’s a challenging read that prompts us to go ahead and throw ourselves into those pictures and document our wonderful lives the way we are.  I don’t want my babies to look back and wonder why I wasn’t around.
I WAS!
I was only lurking around behind the lens.
Ladies,  we are not meant to live life behind the lens.  I can’t wait to live my life for when I might be camera ready.  Everyone who loves me and will cherish pictures of me already knows what I look like anyway.

Thanks to lots of precious women in my life, who have been willing to share with me, I am discovering so much about the roots of our beauty beliefs.  Why we do these things and where do we learn it from?

In my pursuit of a meaningful makeover I want to learn and investigate the how’s and why’s of what I’m doing and not just slap some makeup on.  I want to make sure that the message I give to my daughter helps her hold onto that sweet and natural acceptance of herself.  That  she’ll be able to grow into steady confidence and kindness to herself and the girls around her.  I want her to shine!

So shine I MUST.

Check out the great article that inspired this blog post:
http://myfriendteresablog.com/so-youre-feeling-too-fat-to-be-photographed/

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8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Lori T.
    Feb 26, 2013 @ 17:55:08

    Finally got to reading your multiple blogs. Hello to the Mandi I met and fell in love with so many years ago, pieces of whom (like your writing) have been hibernating for awhile. Pleasure to re-meet you! You make me laugh and cringe at the same time—marks of a true writer. This one is my favorite so far.

    Reply

  2. MikesYf
    Feb 26, 2013 @ 19:49:02

    ok, so I’m at work reading this…and bawling. I’m thinkin’ I gotta quit reading Mandi’s stuff at work cuz I’m bawlin’…again!

    Can I write you a book? We should really get together, I have so much to share with you. There is so much inspiring me at this time of my life and I want to pass some of it to you, but it would take a whole page and if we get together… we’ll crochet or go to the store and buy yarn to crochet.

    I’m gathering info from alot of places lately, stuff I need. Stuff that inspired me to start caring about my appearance and stop making excuses or worse just letting the time go by without doing anything. Ok. So, inspiring things to me “If you are tired of starting over, quit giving up!” I’ve lost the same 20 lbs 40 times in 15 years, it’s tiring, and if I quit giving up, I’ll get to start on a new 20 lbs eventually. Truth be known, I’m still not at goal, but I eat better, I see muscles I haven’t seen in maybe 20 years, eek! Could it be that long??? But they are there and I can see them! Praise God! and I’m not giving up!

    Other inspiration, right from the Lord, Stand and keep standing! And of course (this is my newest confession) God’s grace is sufficient for me!

    Love you sister!

    Reply

  3. jill
    Feb 26, 2013 @ 19:40:19

    I don’t know you but feel like long lost sisters! can totally relate to your blog. keep it up… 🙂 enjoying it so much!

    Reply

    • mandimon
      Feb 26, 2013 @ 19:55:24

      Thanks so much Jill!!! That is so awesome! The crazy thing is that we ARE long lost sisters. We ALL struggle with these things it just seems to look different for each of us.

      Reply

  4. Danielle
    Mar 01, 2013 @ 00:12:21

    People tell me (us) all the time that “we are never alone” but this journey can have some very lonely moments. I am thankful to see you being so raw about this reality so many women feel so in those lonely moments we can have a tangible resource to turn to 🙂

    Reply

  5. Trackback: My 100th Post | Realology

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