Tuesday, April 6, 2010

just me

I took this picture this morning...out on the sun-soaked field, sitting in the damp grass, watching Kiki chase leaves. There were angry thoughts and frustration whirling around inside of me, and then, you know what? I felt OK. I felt glad to be out there in the fresh air, where everything is simple. Where I am just me. Kiki, the wind, the sun....they see me without makeup, see me in whatever mental state I am in, and accept it, and love me and give me their blessings. I felt embraced! And I thought, why don't I take a picture, so I can remember what I really look like, so I can decide who I am, so that I don't have to buy into what someone else might see and might label me as. And this picture made me feel good; I love who I am, I love my life, and I feel confident that, even if the worst happens and my father in law never speaks to me again like he threatened over the phone, I will be able to live a fulfilled and happy life.

I've been dealing with the word 'FAT' these past few days. What is fat? When is someone fat? Who decides? One thing I definitely have decided is that I am not going to allow FAT to be a label for myself or anyone else. Last night I lay awake, wasn't able to sleep, and was thinking about fat, fat, fat. And suddenly I saw fat as just another part of my body....another element which completes this composition which allows me to live. Whether I have a little more or a little less of it....who cares? I have hands that grasp, legs that walk, eyes that see, and skin that holds it all together. Fat is the oil in my machinery. It's a part of me. And why should I hate any part of me?

I also saw the irony in the fact that, the minute I thought I had made my peace with fat, a loved one would call me fat, and I would be forced to reevaluate my relationship to fat (and to that loved one, too). I told him on the phone that I didn't cry because I feel fat...I cried because I was sad that he would look at me and see a fat girl, instead of a girl he loves and respects, who makes his son happy, who lost her child last fall, who is doing her best to be a good and positive person in a world where it's not always easy being good and positive. I cried because I thought someone who supposedly loves me would be gentle with me; nurturing, supportive, careful. I am almost angry at myself for having allowed someone who acted in such a shallow and inconsiderate manner to have affected me so much. I wish I had dealt with all of this differently. You know how it is: you look back on an incident and wish you could have hit 'pause' so you could catch your breath, gather your thoughts, and respond in a true and direct manner.  Instead I reacted from an injured, frustrated place, and in turn apparantly hurt my father in law's feelings by insinuating that he is shallow. When he told me I should be careful what I say to him, and that if I insist on him being shallow, he will never utter a word to me again as long as he lives...and then hung up on me...I felt awful. This wasn't how I wanted things to go. (On the other hand, a part of me kind of laughed and thought, "If never talking to me again means him never hurting me with his words again, maybe this is a good thing!")

I am aware that these past few blog entries have been very 'me me me,' and that the subject matter isn't particularly uplifting....still, I can't help but be honest about what is going on in my mind and heart. I hope soon I will be able let go, feel free, and share spring beauty and joyful thoughts with all of you! I really do want this to be a place where you leave feeling refreshed and good. But, you know how it is...sometimes, shit happens!

Thanks for all of your patience and support. I really, really, REALLY appreciate it.



  1. Imagine a world where everyone looked alike. blah. You are beautiful! don't ever doubt that.

  2. Good Morning! I'm glad you have been able to use this blog and all of your friends out here to deal with your hurt and confusion. You sound like a beautiful person, inside and out. Please don't let someone else's insensitivity ruin your spirit and your love for yourself.
    Just decide what is right for you - I have let people go in my life because they weren't good for me and I'm freer because of it. Sometimes though words can get out of hand and we don't really mean what we are saying. It just becomes a hurtful circle.
    I pray that you know foremost all the great things about you, that you are beautiful and you never let anyone take that away from you.
    You make us all happy with this wonderful blog! We want you to be happy too!
    Sarah xo

  3. What a beautiful picture, fresh faced, sparkling blue eyes, clear skin...I could go on! Good on you for telling your father in law your thoughts and feelings, it really can't have been easy, I bet it will all settle down when everything isn't so raw and maybe he will start to see your point of view :)


  4. Dawn...what a beautiful lady you are! And yes, we sometimes forget all we have and focus on the negativity instead. As I've said you are beautiful and you have so much going for you...you're a great writer, artist and person. Concentrate on the postive--and put your troubles in God's hands!!!

    xoxo Gert

  5. Oh I love this so much Dawn. This girl, my friend, a natural beauty with the wind blowing in her hair....a lovely photo of the lovely you! Think of what our bodies endured this year...emotionally and physicially. Truth be told, I've been unmotivated to go to yoga and have noticed that the waist of my pants has 'shrunk' ha!
    You need not ever wonder, you are beautiful just as you are...inside & out!
    love to you my sweet friend

  6. You are cutting your way through a jungle right now, the air is thick and heavy, light is limited.

    You are moving ahead, in evidence is the beautiful photograph today, of a beautiful woman.

    You possess beauty in body, soul and spirit.

    We do not have to fit into anyone else's mold of how we should be or look. We would have no peace, at all, if we tried too.

  7. I am so glad that you have posted over these past few tumultuous days because you have shared such honesty with your readers. Life is not always cupcakes, rainbows and pretty things. Life is life and as you said shit happens.
    The photo you posted has so much truth and beauty behind it. It is you- all of you and you are a true beauty. I love how the sun dances off your cheeks and how the wind blows in your hair.But it also shows your vulnerable side and that is good.
    Dawn, I'm so sorry that this week has been so difficult for you. I have the feeling though that you have come out of it stronger. Be proud that you are standing up for yourself and showing yourself unconditional love. It's so important.

  8. Ooo your step-father's attitude has ruffled my feathers a bit... he needs to grow up. He hurt you and now he is trying to turn it around and act like he is the injured party! Not good. Silly man. Why do men always do that? My ex used to do that! It is like they are backed into a corner and rather than just apologise they lash out...I'm sure women do it too...that is a generalisation but I don't care for it much. Yes, you wish you could go back and handle the situation differently but this is not just you trying to fix and sort out the situation. He needs to learn something from it too. He needs to learn that, whilst he may not be shallow, he is certainly in need of learning to practise a bit more tact!

  9. PS Beautiful photo Dawn...truly... xxx

  10. dear dawn,
    i hope you can take to heart what everyone of your friends has written here.
    i have been in your situation before in my life, what i mean is been treated poorly and then having the tables turned and told i was too emotional or was at fault for my reaction. i believed it as i think you are doing now. don't apologize for your words of hurt and frustration. it doesn't matter who it is, no one has the right to speak to you that way. he was being shallow and insensitive and rude. and now what he is doing is turning it around to place blame on you.
    don't feel bad. just try to see this as a lesson. i hope you will learn sooner than i did, when a person says hurtful things, walk away.
    they don't have your permission. you can say something as simple as i don't want to be talked to this way. period.
    then do as you are now, turn your pretty face towards the sun, towards positive and loving souls like your own.
    i learned to do this after living with much abuse in my life (after i met my sweet husband and he showed me how). he tells me there is such a thing as being too nice, and he's right!
    let this be your fils problem, not your own.
    sending love and hugs!
    lori ♥

  11. i have been in this place too...treated like shit from my stepfather...after 40 years.my mom dies and he decides not to speak to me and my brother...what did we do to him?

    guess we were always a thorn in his side and with her gone..he doesn't have to "be nice anymore". good bye to you and good riddance...

    some people are just cold...

    you my dear, are warm and sweet and kind...and your feelings were hurt...they just were...mine would have been too.

    sending warm love to you,

  12. Hi I like to read your blog and its a sweet one! I saw what you wrote today and Ive had unpleasant things happen like that too and one ends up feeling sorted. My husb is from Scotland and I lived there a few yrs with him...Europe is so lovely! Could it be that he was just "talking in general" out of real concern and not meaning any real harm? Maybe close enough to you to say that? Im a bit like that sometimes maybe. Try to farm it into the soil as best as possible Im sure hes not a mean man (?) and said what he said not thinking. Its better to live with peace and smooth the path sewing in harmony. Im sure he will think twice next time. Strange tho bc the Europeans arent as outspoken as us Americans are lol!

  13. I LOVE this picture of you. :-) It is peaceful, settled and beautiful. :-) I'm sorry you are going through this, but I can hear the courage and strength in your "voice" and it makes me proud of you. I know the feeling of wishing to hit pause, to not let them see how their words cut and wound. I hope for understanding and peace between you and your father-in-law, but if that isn't possible, I hope for perfect peace in your heart.

  14. Dearest Dawn, I am glad to see that you are feeling better today and showing the world how beautiful you are inside and out. This is something that V will see once he removes his narrow vision goggles!
    Thinking of you darling
    Love Morwenna xoxo

  15. If that is fat, I'm Porky Pig. I am a direct person, so this is my opinion; he is shallow. How does the person who hurt another get off blaming the hurt person? And the defense against being shallow is to behave as a child by threatening to never speak to you again if you aren't repentant for pointing out a truth. You do see the irony I hope. I do also hope that he realized he was out of line and will eventually be sorry for his behavior. If not, you'll have a polite relationship with him

    I'm almost 60 years old and I will tell you, life is too short for body image nonsense and for allowing other people to define who or what you are. I don't know you but I have a sense of a very kind person who does not need to worry about herself.

  16. I just started following your blog but it still saddened me that you have to go through this. What your FIL did was so unfair to you... maybe he really didn't think it through when you met him, but he was all wrong on the phone.
    You look stunning in this picture - it reflects who you are. I hope the sun and the spring bring you happier times.

  17. Thank you for sharing your truths and true beauty with us. You're a brave woman. Some day someone will remember these posts and your courage and honesty will help them through a difficult situation. I'm told nothing happens without a reason.

  18. You are BEAUTIFUL, and far from fat! If anyone thinks otherwise, they are truly blind.

    Many many ♥'s to you.

  19. I am still confused as to why he would use the word "fat" to describe you!

  20. Shit happens...this is great!
    I LOVE your thoughts and the realness of these entries.
    This is cutting edge, because so rarely does someone as kind and generous as you, want to share anything that might disturb her readers.
    Well, it looks like life and your peeps here are ready for whats real and I am so grateful to you, that I get to read your thoughts here.
    I laughed out loud too about his comment to never talk to you again...perfect!
    This way, you can say all the good and wise things that you wrote here about how to treat loved ones, and he can soak it in.
    A little sad that he thinks he can say to you whatever crosses his mind and doesn't want to hear you respond...I pray he learns and grows...up.
    Good stuff.

  21. BTW...you look GORGEOUS!!!!!
    I love the natural look...thank you for posting it:)

  22. Lovely picture. You are a beautiful woman.

  23. You sound much better today. I'm so glad you did talk to your FIL, even if things are not resolved. Doesn't it always seem like the people you love so much are the ones who can cut you to the quick? I usually spend a lot of time trying to figure out what is motivating people to do or say things so that you know how to approach them. But perhaps he is just too irascable! Anyway, I love your picture today - you've got a twinkle in your eye. hugs, t

  24. Showing us your sad side enables us to trust & appreciate the happy side. It's very brave, and I certainly thank you for your honesty.

    Have you ever seen that painting Christina's World? I stumbled upon it at the Museum of Modern Art in NY while I was in culinary school. I stared for a long time at that painting. It prompted so many questions for me and many others, I'm sure - Why is she laying there? What happened? I felt the pain of her experience, and I couldn't even see her face. It was so layered and so real for me. It was beautiful and very dark at the same time.

    Now, I can see your face in the picture above. And the darkness is not the same. However it somehow reminded me of that painting, and I see both your pain and your beauty captured within.


  25. When I clicked on your post, the first thing I thought was, "Wow, what a beautiful girl."

    And after reading your words, I think you are beautiful both inside and out.

  26. Oh Dear. I've been attacked by the in laws - many time and at the worst moments in my life. You have been brave in your blogging, but maybe you need to be brave with this man and tell him how he made you feel - explain your reaction to his hurtful statement, and leave the ball in his court. Don't apologize, it's ridiculous that he's ignorant to being so hurtful to you. But, you will know you tried to do the right thing, and if nothings comes of it, you can peacefully move on in life.
    He sounds like an ass, but sometimes marriage brings this sort of crap to our lives.
    You look beautiful in that shot. Like you said, you can see, walk, think a clear thought, hear, sing, type ...you are lucky indeed. Except your father in law is an asshole. oh, did I type that..hee hee

  27. I just came across your post and it broke my heart. People can be so unfeeling. You are a beautiful woman. I just wanted to know that loosing a baby is so huge but you still have a joy of life all around you and it is in your pictures. As someone who has been on a diet for 42 years and maybe will be forever, I just wanted you to know, just be who you are, remember God looks at the heart. Blessings to you.



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