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I’m Louise. Blogger. Wife. Designer of TruLu Couture Veils + Accessories.  If you’d like to know more, check out my bio.

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Wednesday
May022012

My Dirty Little Secret

Today's post comes from our lady across the pond. Most of you #NoseyBitches (follow on Twitter, it's a hoot!) will know her as Anna, from Anna and The Ring. She's migrated to a fabulous new site, Far From the Wedding Crowd. Check it out for awesome weddingness. Anna's wedding journey closely mirrored my own in time frame and often times, WPMs (Wedding Planning Meltdown). Sometimes I feel like Anna is the British version of me. It makes me happy to know that somewhere, a version of me might have a lovely British accent.

Please welcome Anna and her Dirty Little Secret.

 

Once upon a time I was a happy and healthy child.

Then the chubbiness came. Nothing unusual. I was normal, albeit slightly introverted. Books fascinated me more than people yet I still loved being around people.

Then came 14 and a skiing accident. I remember there was ice and then my knee twisting in a strange direction and I guess happiness stopped.

The appetite remained sadly without the exercise. I continued to play some sports but I was never as fast or confident. I became my true introverted self.

I ballooned and have kept on ballooning since that day.

My body should be able to do amazing things. I should be able to scale rock faces and I should be able to run a marathon and I should be able to wear a dress without Spanx. (And yes I know should is a desperately dangerous word.)

It's so shameful to admit to myself that I am obese, yet to admit it to people who already see I am is even more soul destroying.

Of course I would love to be different. How I wish I were the size I was meant to be. How I wish I could wear the clothes I swoon about. Hence my shoe obsession. I shall never wear the pretty clothes. I shall never be anyone's best friend?

And yet never is a strong word. I guess all these things are actually possible but would you like to know my dirty little secret. A secret I really don't want to share but know that if I do share it might make me realise I'm an idiot. An idiot that can change her life.

Ok. deep breath.

Here's my secret.

There is a significant part of me (well of course it would be significant I have my own gravity!) which wants to stay on the large side.

There is a safety to being overweight. All of life's disappointments can explained away. People don't like me because I am fat. No-one will ever ask me to be a bridesmaid, but that's okay! It's just because I'm
hideous. Who would want to spoil their photographs with me. I hardly wanted to be in my own wedding album. I know I would judge me. I mean who really wants to eat supper sitting across from me? Boys didn't like me when I was younger because was large. Yes boys are shallow and I am happily married now but man, that hurt when I was younger. Young girls please note, sleeping around is not the root of all happiness.

Perhaps I am an intensely dislikeable person. How does one know whether they are a good egg? I think I have the capacity to be a very good friend, but how does one judge whether they are actually a good
friend? Does size preclude me from forming intense friendships? Will I always be the acquaintance? Does my weight imply I am a bad person?

My favourite quotation implies that I know the answer.

What a strange illusion it is to suppose that beauty is goodness.”

Leo Tolstoy

 

Perhaps, deep down, I know it is me? If I remove my weighty armour I will still be the same "unpopular" person?

Life is short and yet I am consumed by such thoughts and perhaps fallacies?

Is it the height of self indulgence or is it a pervasive evil thread that is destroying my life?

Should I be brave and force myself into my trainers? Will I magically become a better person or is that decent woman already there? Could changing my shape really change my mind?

 Anna, you've already been told how fabulous this picture is, and I know you aren't a fan of it for whatever reason, but trust me when I say THIS IS SO BEAUTIFUL.

 

 

 

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Reader Comments (15)

Ooof. That's a post loaded with good stuff. HARD stuff, really. Weight and fitness are such personal things to open up and share--everyone has an opinion on what you should do and how you should be. Most are meant with the best of intentions (like my fiance reminding me how much happier I am when I work out) but others, others (sometimes even the well meaning ones) feel like a damn imposition. Which is all to say that I'm not going to address whether you should "force yourself into trainers"...

But as far as being a good person? If in-person you're anything like you via the internet, you're a lovely person. We all have our faults and difficulties. In fact, just last night, I was discussing how I so desperately miss the close friend interaction. I remember in high school discussing how we'd be each other's bridesmaids, and then we drifted apart and none of us are being each others bridesmaids (and I'm starting to get the idea that they aren't going to match the effort in getting to my wedding that I have/will muster for theirs).

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBeth

Lady, we all know you're a good person. <3

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterErin

Anna you are awesome just the way you are xo

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterlouise

Anna, I so love your words and that photo, I love what they say about who you are and how you think, it seems to resonate with what's inside me and probably so many of us.
We all love YOU, that's why we read your blog! And we all know that you're a good egg. x

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHarriet

I love this post and I love the picture. Weight is such a personal issue and while of course it's best to be oneself, I can't help but cringe when people say "it's ok" to be an unhealthy weight. Longevity is important to me, and I want to make it important to those I care about, and that includes maintaining a healthy weight and lifestyle to reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes that can plague overweight people. My best friend is overweight. I've never once discussed this with her and sometimes I wish I had the guts to. She wears her weight like the author of this post does, as armor, but it depresses me to know that as we grow older she's going to have health problems that are weight related. I don't know... I hesitate to post this but sometimes I just feel like saying "it's ok" isn't really ok.

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSara

Anna, Anna, Anna, what are we to do with you my love? One day I hope you will learn and appreciate exactly how people see you. And I very VERY much hope you'll see yourself the way we do; a wonderful, honest, intelligent and gorgeous lady that people are proud to know. X

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJanet Mohapi-Banks

Anna you are beautiful. I check your blog from time to time and always seem to do so when you've posted some of your more poignant posts, hence why I'm here. Society feels the need to class us by our outward beauty and our weight but please, no matter what weight, you are beautiful inside and out, and I'm sure Bean would concur!
If you ever venture to Swansea, South Wales, UK I'll be your friend!
x

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnna

Anna, you know I love you. There is no easy solution to your weight-self-esteem issues. There just isn't. The two are intertwined, and you can't solve one without solving the other. If I could be there to help you, I would. One of the things that I've started doing for myself is walking. Every little bit helps. I now try to park at the wrong end of a parking lot, walk the stairs as much as possible, walk the block during lunch, and go for walks in the evenings and a serious walk every Saturday. Every little bit helps, and the stronger I become, the better I feel about myself. Maybe you could find a walking buddy who is willing to make a weekly date of it to help you get started? A friend and I go every Saturday morning, and it's one of my favorite times all week. Hugs from across the pond.

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

Ooooof, what rough stuff. I do know this: it is absolutely a fallacy that you would seen by others as an ugly person inside even if the outside shape of your body changed. It is also absolutely a fallacy that changing your shape would make you all better, somehow. I can't know what it's like to struggle with the armor like you do, but I do know what it's like to feel unloved and unpopular, and I've had a taste of how an unhealthy body image and an unsettled emotional mind can work with each other to effectively destroy you. Like Sarah said up there, the two are entwined, and there truly is no tackling one without taking on the other.

Whatever you do, know that you are a good person and we'll be behind to help push you forward.

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterlyn

My 2 cents: many of my long-time readers are familiar with my own body image struggles (see the post "Does My Butt Look Big in This Gown?).

What I can say is thin does not equal happy. IT. DOES. NOT. There were times where I was the tallest, thinnest girl in the room and the level of self-loathing most likely the greatest.

You have to figure out how to make your insides pretty/happy/content - once you do that, the outside follows right on along.

May 2, 2012 | Registered CommenterLouise

This topic hits very close to home for me. Being overweight is something I've dealt with my entire life. ENTIRE LIFE. I have no idea what it's like to NOT have this issue. I have no idea what it's like to have a good level of self-esteem. I diet, I fail. I try again, I fail again. I'm a control freak. I can control SO many things in my life, but this one issue slays me. I keep trying. I cry. I yell. I hide. I pretend it doesn't bother me. It bothers me every day.

My appearance will tell a perfect stranger that I have some issues. My appearance tells folks that I'm not all that healthy. Unless you see a thin person engaging in any kind of unhealthy activity, you might know know they have problems, too. I try to remind myself "Be kind; everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle." But, you know what? My health is none of your damn business. Your health is none of my damn business. I am perfectly aware of my issues. I know how I got here. If I ask you for help or advice, I'm opening the door to you. Until then, keep your opinions/well-meaning advice to yourself. It's such a highly personal thing. I mean, at least for me, it is. Anytime anyone has tried to gently broach the subject, I cry. It's like a switch is flipped inside of me. It hurts me to the core.

So, yes, Anna. I understand how you feel. I understand that I've physically built a shield around myself. I understand that I'm am actually physically hiding from the world. I know why I've done this, I know about all of my psychological baggage. What I haven't figured out (yet) is how to stop doing this. I haven't figured out how to beat it. I keep trying. I like how you reference "being brave." I try to be brave every day, every minute. I fear that if I don't keep trying, I'll die.

I could seriously talk this topic into the ground. I feel like I could talk about it for weeks, nonstop, and still not solve it.

May 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterChristy W

I still adore you no matter what.

Oh Anna, I wish you could see you the way we all do. I know that is an easier said thing than done, but know that we are all here rooting for you. Big hugs from the other side of the world.

May 3, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterkc

Oh ladies. Thank you. I guess admitting it to myself is the first step. I'm not saying I want to be unhealthy and thin. I want to be healthy.

I need to just get a wriggle on - time is running out for me. Any top tips for making that first step on weary legs?

Anna

Just read your post and want to reach out and hug you. How awful we are that we do this to ourselves. As women we are the most harsh of critics and judge people daily. What is important is that you are healthy by whatever standard you measure it. Beauty is in your actions and words and how you love overs. The most beautiful women ironically have the biggest insecurities and are also without 'friends' and the last to be chosen as Bridesmaids (who wants that stunner in their picture on their wedding day!) I cant help you change how you look or feel about yourself, you know there are many who love you and admire you and love who you are, but I will say if you stop and look hard enough someone around you probably needs you and your friendship, forget what people think of you and start thinking about them, guaranteed to make you feel good about you. I'm in the business of making women look good in a photo...but whoever they are, whatever they look like to me how I make them feel about themselves is worth tenfold. Sending love & a hand of friendship. ;)

June 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCarey

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