Sunday, September 25, 2011

Truth Be Told

Since signing up for the 100 day stretch and participating in the 10 and 2 challenge, I started to reflect on my blog experience thus far. I started this blog a few months ago after stumbling onto fashion blogs last year. I've always loved clothes and being feminine and really believe that women should feel great about being women! I decided to try blogging on a whim as something fun to do. I've mentioned my 3 jobs I know, and in the course of my work which is my passion, I am often dealing with really complicated and heart breaking things...abuse, loneliness, bullying, lives controlled by people who hold extreme power over other human beings. At the end of the day, I want something light-hearted to pull me out of that world, and so was the genesis of this blog. It was meant to be a place where I could be me, talk about fun things and the reality of being a woman and wanting to feel my best and hopefully encourage others to accept themselves and embrace who they are.

It started out as a lot of fun! Then I started to add more and more blogs to my reading list, and realized the bulk of people reading fashion blogs are other fashion bloggers. Suddenly, I felt that I had to somehow "compete," and felt as though my style, which works just fine in Western Pennsylvania, wasn't enough. I added a few things to my closet to stay up to date and somewhere along the line in the process of trying to do something fun lost a little focus. In the past few weeks while doing the 10 and 2, when I wasn't actually trying to look "fashionable" I had fun again! 

So, here is some truth. I am not a model...doing anything other than looking at the camera and smiling feels strange and looks preposterous on me, so I'm not going to be trying any of the "bloggy" poses, that work great for others and not so much on me. 
I do not get free clothes nor will I ever and I'm not a full time blogger, nor will I ever be. It's great for those who make a career out of it, and I know they have worked really hard at it, but I live in a different world. In my world, I have to buy the things I wear and it will rarely look like something from the streets of Milan. The clothes I wear are what feel good to me, not what's trendy today and will be forgotten tomorrow, because frankly I can't afford to live like that! 
That brings me to the 100 day stretch. I should be wearing what I've already got and be making the most of my closet! Isn't that what we all do most of the time? I can't pretend to live some glamorous life when I don't, everything I have I have struggled for and earned, it doesn't magically appear. Like most women, raising a family and working, I go from pay to pay hoping to make it. I can't pretend otherwise, or not be honest about finances. 
Here is some honesty, we literally have about $50.00 to make it to our next pay right now! I just paid for my car to be fixed and will be stretching every penny over the next several days so that I can actually put gas in it to get to work! I'm not writing that for a pity party, it is simply the truth and that is the reality for most families nowadays! 
Money is an uncomfortable topic, but I think some truth about finances is important. I don't work 3 jobs because I want to, I have to. I don't have credit cards because I ran up incredible debt when I was young in college and just finished paying it off. I now have school loans to pay back and regret going to grad. school, because now I'm just paying out more money than there is coming in. 
Raising children is expensive! and, my children's needs come before mine. Sometimes, we have to postpone paying one bill to catch up on another....
So there it is, some cold hard truth about money. Again, this isn't written to start a pity party, I just couldn't live with myself if I weren't honest. I want to participate in something that makes me and others feel good, not inadequate or broke!

I want to get back to blogging fun and focusing on what most of us can do and who we are...not striving to be anything else but me in all my flawed fabulosity! I also want to start focusing on other women, who are living their lives with integrity and can be real role models for others, so expect to see some other faces beyond my own!

If you read all of this, thank you. If it was "too honest," I hope I haven't distressed you or pulled out a little too much reality on a Sunday afternoon! I'll be more perky again tomorrow...I really am a "perky" person!