I have been very fortunate to get to know some really wonderful people here in the blogging work. Karen from Little Smarticle Particles who has become my product proofreading goddess I met through the TPT Seller Challenge. Also, Kristen from Kristen's Kindergarten is a doll.
Amy from Learning Lessons with Mrs. Labrasciano has become my dearest friend. Without her love, support, guidance, and friendship I would never be blogging or traveling to Vegas.
Here is Paul Edelman (founder of TPT) Amy, and me at the last TPT conference last summer.
As excited as I am about traveling to Vegas and seeing all the friends I have made in the teaching, blogging and TPT community, I have had some....what's the word....anxiety, fear, and depression about it. Maybe this is normal. Maybe not. I'm not sure.
My fears are not about traveling, or flying, or getting lost. I am not anxious about socializing (I actually love that part). I am anxious about...me. It's hard to even type that.
I am struggling with my weight and it hurts. I use to look like this...
This was in 2009.
Now....not so much...
I'd like to say that I'm eating salads and healthy foods, drinking water, working out and doing all I can but the truth is...I'm not. I'm eating what I've always eaten. The problem is that I'm now 41. I'm not 22 anymore. I can't eat the way I used to and I want to cry just typing that. My exercise is walking the dog and since I have a beagle we do a lot more of this....
than actual walking.
... so my exercise is lacking.
Truth is I love food. I have a sweet tooth. I eat anything with sugar. I know. It's horrible for me. I'm addicted. No joke-addicted. I don't want to give up the foods I love. I don't want to exercise. I. hate. it. I'm not good at it. And so...now I look like this.
And I hate it.
I know I shouldn't worry about what people think of me. I know I shouldn't feel the need to impress. I know this and yet maybe if I had the perfect dress I would feel better. So yesterday..
I went here...
and tried on 3 dresses.
Then I went here...
and tried on 5.
Then I went here...
and didn't try any because there were no dresses in my size (which used to be a 16 but now I'm pushing a size 18) and 2 really cute, skinny girls who had an armful or dresses and it made me feel bad.
So then I went to...
Next I went to..
and after almost fainting at the prices, I tried on one dress. I couldn't get that one over my hips.
After dinner, I ventured to...
where...wait for it.....
I finally got a dress! Then it was onto CVS to get nail polish and a tanning lotion.
When I got home I texted Amy and told her about how sad and depressed and anxious I have been feeling and she responded with this (her comments are I grey, mine are blue)...
And I started to cry. I mean...full on ugly tears cry. She had no idea. I never told her. Amy didn't even know it but she reminded me what is most important in life.
I thought back to all the stores I went to, shopping for "THE perfect outfit" as if that outfit was going to make me feel better. As if a dress, a pair of shoes, and all the right the matching accessories are going to make Cara Carroll or Annie Moffatt (ladies I truly admire) like me more.
No dress is going to do that. Not even the most well matched accessories.
I have 2 choices.
1. I can accept myself for the way I am or...
2. I can not. And make....really make...the conscience decision to work for it. It's not going to just happen. I have to work for it.
If I put as much time and energy into getting myself healthy and fit as I do into blogging and creating new products I wouldn't have to shop in 10 different stores to find validation. Or would I?
Would scrolling through my Instagram feed make me still want to have what it seems like everyone else has? The clothes, the earrings from Kendall Scott, the Erin Condren Planner that I can't afford but want anyway? I'm willing to bet it would. I think that's the Devil talking.
Thank you, Amy for reminding me what really matters. For grounding me and getting me off the pity train. I love you, dear friend.
What I have learned through the TPT Seller Challenge is that the friends I have met along the way are my friends because they accept me for who and what I am. There is no competition between is. We truly want one another to succeed and do well. We support one another and lift each other up. Sometimes it's a simple comment on a blog post, a like or a comment on Instagram, a kind email, or an invite to a linky. And sometimes it comes as a text from someone you never even knew 2 years ago but they knew just what to say.
This week when I am in Vegas I am going to keep all of this in mind. I'm looking forward to seeing my friends, in the new dress I bought and the other 4 outfits I pulled from my closet. I'm looking forward to enjoying the moment and living in the moment.
How about you? Have you made friends here in the blogging community? I hope so.