Taking my space

Last night I went to a ladies evening to meet and mingle with the local ladies in the expat community. It was a lovely evening, lots of laughs and good conversations.  At the end of the night when I had returned home I looked at some pictures that were taken and I stood out, being so much bigger and taller than the rest of the women there.  I had a bit of a moment looking at the pictures and my old insecurities started to arise.  That word ‘big’ it’s like a knife to my heart every time someone says it to me. I creates an immediate response of shame, like I have to apologize to the rest of the world for taking up more space than them.

I didn’t  like the response I had to this word so I took some time for reflection. Some time to figure out what the word ‘big’ truly means to me.

Recently my father was speaking of the gorgeous plus sized model Ashley Graham and he said “oh that big girl!” I cringed and my response to him was that you should never, ever call a woman big! He didn’t seem to understand why big was so bad. After all he married my Mom and she is a gorgeous tall woman herself and he just adores her. So why then, can my father look at my mother and say “you’re a big, beautiful, brilliant woman” and mean every word with love and all my Mom and I hear is BIG?

I suppose I could start blaming the media, the fashion industry, movies and television but blame doesn’t solve anything. What I need, is to change my inner narrative. I want to hear the word big being used to describe a woman and think, that woman is powerful, she owns her space, she is BIG and she is exactly the way she is supposed to be.

I want to feel that way and I know with some hard work it’s possible. There is great power to be had from affirmations and positive reinforcement. So although now it’s a struggle; I know that someday in the near future I will look at a picture of myself standing tall and owning my space and think, Catherine you’re a BIG woman, and I will smile.

So what do you even do all day?😳

When I tell people I’m a housewife with no kids I have come to expect about three different responses. The first one is from what I believe to be is a person who is content with their own life. This type of person is capable of feeling happiness for another person and has no problem expressing that they think it’s an awesome situation. I really like this type of person, I imagine most people do.

The second response is usually from other women and it’s generally very negative. These are the women who I choose not to spend my time with. Women who struggle to be happy for other women. Women who most likely struggle to be happy with themselves. These women usually ask, so what do you even do all day?  Often I can see the judgement in their gaze. I hope that it’s mostly jealously fuelling their snide remarks and sour expressions but it’s probably more than that. You see, if this was sixty years ago it would be other housewives condemning the working woman.  It doesn’t matter what year it is, if you’re doing something out of the norm, some people will judge you for it. I’ve come to accept this.

The third reaction I get is usually from men and it’s the assumption that I’m a gold digger.  No surprise there. Thanks Kanye.

I used to constantly feel the need to defend myself against these reactions, to explain mine and my husbands situation and why we chose to live our life this way and I grew sick of it. Why was I giving these judgemental people permission to effect my feelings?  When in reality if they didn’t judge me for being a housewife, they would certainly find something else to judge me for. It’s just the way they are and I can’t change that. What I can change is how I react. You know that saying, “Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react” well I think it’s finally sunk in. Gone are the days when I stumble through my words trying to explain myself and my situation because if you’re worth being in my life you won’t need an explanation.  You’ll know that I’m a freaking fantastic housewife and more than that I’m happy being one. Do what makes you happy and you will be happy. Do you think the haters are happy? Somehow I doubt it. 😉

 

 

A Life of Love

This is a poem I wrote when I was single about what I wanted to find when I finally fell in love for real. I didn’t write it because I read ‘The Secret’ and wanted my positive thoughts to create it. I also didn’t write it out of loneliness. I wrote it because it was in my heart.
I don’t think I realized that at the time, most of my best poems have been written without even trying. Like my subconscious sorted them out beforehand and just pushed them to the forefront of my mind to be put on paper. Regardless of how it came to be, I am a lucky woman because it came true and I was able to read this to my amazing husband on our wedding day. I hope you enjoy it.

A Life of Love

I don’t want you to love me, in spite of what I’ve done
I want you to take my face in your hands, look me in the eye
And tell me that the past is just that and we will continue to live in the moment

I don’t want you to love me because I’m beautiful
There is nothing more beautiful than the sight of love
I want to be beautiful because you love me, all of me.

I don’t want you to love me because of the things I do for you
Recognize that everything I do is because I care
I want you to know that I do it all because I love you, all of you.

I don’t want you to love me because it’s easy
Life is not fair, simple or easy and at times it will be hard to find reason to love
I want you to know that we will get through it together for true love needs no reason.

I don’t want you to love me with restraint
Love has no rules, no need for moderation, and no limits
I want you to abandon all your inhibitions and love me with everything you have to give.

I don’t want love to be just a word spoken between us
Love is more than just a word; it can change, nurture and protect us
And I need you to know, that I want nothing more, than to live this life of love with you

Does it really get better?

I’m writing today about something that I am very passionate about and that has affected me personally, almost my whole life. Bullying.  You see, I read an article written by a Mother who thinks that bullying is a normal thing for children to go through, that it helps you to learn how to pick yourself up and work through problems.  She is under the impression that today’s youth are too pampered and unable to cope with the stresses of daily life, and apparently bullying will help them to toughen up and become functional members of society.  I can see her point of view, and I completely disagree with it.

Let’s go back twenty years to 1994.  I was 10 years old and had been in school for six years.  I was bullied everyday, for those six years.  Now think about yourself, what do you think it would do to you to have someone with you eight hours of the day challenging your self worth, telling you that you aren’t good enough, that you don’t have any value in this world.  I imagine it would change you, that those people’s words would stay with you.  That no matter how successful you become, or how much you change physically, there would always be that mean girl inside of you, telling you that you just aren’t good enough.

You may look at me today and think that I turned out ok, that it couldn’t have been that bad if I’m doing so well now.  Let me assure you that I am far from ok.  I’ve spent everyday since escaping school trying to pick up all the broken pieces that those bullies created.  I’ve fought with myself constantly, trying to quiet those voices that tell me I’m not good enough and I don’t have value.  I have fallen apart countless times and with the help of my family and friends slowly but surely I have become almost whole again.

I remember my Mom telling me that it will get better, that you won’t be bullied forever, that this will end.  Well it does get better, and I don’t get bullied now but I can assure you, it doesn’t ever really end.  I am still fighting through the damage from the abuse of my bullies, everyday it gets easier but it’s something that should never have to happen.

I always felt like something was fundamentally wrong with me, and that was the reason that I was singled out and bullied so brutally.  I now know, that there is absolutely nothing ‘wrong’ with me.  I am exactly the way I am meant to be; but there are times I can’t help but think, would I be just a little braver, or stronger, or a little more trusting if those bullies never had a voice in my life?

 

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My first blog post <3

I have been struggling, not only on what to write my first blog post about but if I should even bother writing a blog.  It seems as though everyone has a blog now a days and I have to admit I don’t enjoy the huge amount of misinformation included in them.  It was also difficult picking a topic, you see when you google blogging apparently you should stick to one niche, for example baking, photography or puppies.  Never having been a stickler for the rules, I have decided to go against the grain and be topic-less! My blog will simply be about what makes me happy, written with kindness in mind, the things I enjoy doing and most likely an excessive amount of photos of my puppy.  I do hope you enjoy my writings about my beautifully imperfect life.

Here is one of many aforementioned puppy pictures.

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