Put on a creased dress that’s a little too small… dance like you’re in Studio 54, rather than your spare room that is an actual building site.
These pictures were taken about a year ago, I remember feeling gross and so stressed while I was taking them. So much so I felt exhausted afterwards. I didn’t want to show them to anyone for the embarrassment was too acute.
A year on, I have put on rather a lot more weight, sold the dress and painted the room white.
But the biggest shift is my awareness of my so often fragile self esteem. How curious now that I look at myself in those pictures and think I look lovely, (not in a big headed way I must assure you.) Simply that, there was absoloutely nothing wrong with me.
The past two years have been such a journey with regard to how I feel about my appearance. Growing our my grey hair was not liberating, I would say more, freeing.
I was free from the expense and stress of constant colouring, which was a total relief.
Having grey hair however changed my view on femininity so much, I felt much older, colours and styles that had previously been something of a signiature no longer worked and with gaining weight also I found myself not even recognising the women I saw when I peered at my reflection.
I think because of my anxious nature I did not look at these changes in a positive way, I felt lost and confused as to how to go about finding my style once again.
It probably sounds so vapid, but alongwith other life occurances, I felt very sorry for myself.
Time passing and a lot of work done on myself, with still more to go I know, I feel I am growing accustomed to my new self and don’t want to return to the “old me” there is a lovely new version, never seen before! And it is exciting, not a thing of loss but of incredible gain. To love myself inspite of weight, hair colour and even a lack of ironing skills on occasion has been a challenge worth undertaking.
The thing I most love about this picture is the sincere way I show my nails, as this was my first ever manicure and I was so proud of how glossy it made me feel. Such a little thing but it truly made me feel some kind of prettiness. I now think what a shame and want to give that version of me a hug. But the way I am feeling these days a high five for all I have achieved would be more appropriate I think.