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EGL Wardrobe Challenge Pt. 2

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Here we go with this weeks answers for the EGL Wardrobe Challenge created by @thefabledfawn on Instagram! Thank you to all that read my post from last week. Remember to let me know in the comments if you are doing this as well and share your IG handle if you’d like!

7. An Item You Could Never Sell

Decoration Dream – Angelic Pretty (back frill jsk)

To be completely honest, there aren’t many things in my wardrobe I am willing to sell but Decoration Dream would be one of those pieces you’d have to pry out of my cold dead hands. This dress encompasses everything that drew me to lolita in the first place. The colors are the perfect shades of pastel and they can easily inspire so many different color combinations for coords. The ultra cavity-inducing sweetness of the cakes and the rocking horses is too cute. If I could just jump into this print à la Blue’s Clues “blue-skidoo” I would live there forever. (If you didn’t get that reference you may be too young for me, friend.)

8. Your Favorite Novelty Item

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I am not too keen on collecting brand novelty items. Some people love it which is awesome, but I feel like if I am spending money on brand I better be able to wear it somehow. So here is a picture of the only novelty items I own: an Angelic Pretty calendar I got with the dress I bought at the AP Paris shop and an Angelic Pretty hand mirror I got in my gift bag at the Dream Masquerade Carnival event in London a few years back. Even though they were freebies, I love how cute they look in my wardrobe room.

9. Your Most Popular Colour

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Pink! Pink! PINK!!

Shocking, right?! There is no doubt pink is my most popular colour not just for lolita fashion but also for everything else in my life.

10. The Best Bargain Find

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Logo Embroidery Cutsew Cardigan – Angelic Pretty

I found this on LaceMarket for less than half the price I normally see this cardigan go for. Not to mention it was new with tags! I couldn’t believe it was so incredibly cheap so much that I kept checking to make sure it wasn’t a fake. It’s my first and only brand cardigan and it made me realize how different lolita specific cardigans are to casual wear cardigans. One of my 2019 lolita goals is to invest in a few more brand cardigans because I always find myself preferring the look of them.

11. The Oldest Item You Own (by year released)

Swan Lake Frill JSK – Metamorphose Temps de Fille

This dress was released in 2008 and all my other dresses were released from 2010 onward. In complete honesty, this dress doesn’t match my style so much anymore. I bought it very early on before I realized that it’s better to hunt for pieces that match your wardrobe rather than snatching up whatever is cheap. It’s a very cute dress and I love the swans on the print, but the dropped waist doesn’t flatter my shape very well and I barely wear black. However, it’s a really good dress if I feel like dressing more casually.

12. Your Craziest Accessory

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I’m not one for crazy OTT headpieces and I usually opt for loading up a bunch of smaller accessories alongside a typical head bow, but for my first ever brand tea party I made a huge Poinsettia and snowflake head piece. I seriously loved this headpiece back when I  was experimenting with different levels of OTT (I even made a scepter that lit up for this meet!). The theme was Winter Wonderland so I thought it went perfectly with the look. Even though it looks a little bit silly to me now, I’d be lying if I said I wouldn’t want to make a better one and wear it again!

13. The Oddball 

Twinkle Star – Angelic Pretty (JSK)

I had no problem choosing the oddball out of my wardrobe. There are so many reasons why this dress sticks out from the rest of my pieces. As I mentioned earlier, I don’t normally wear black.. It’s the only dress I own with a halter neck which makes it difficult to pair with certain blouses. It’s also very short on me, even more so than most lolita dresses thanks to my height (#talllolitaproblems). Despite all these things, I treasure this dress! I find all the silver stars so cute and they make the dress lean toward sweet despite it being black. I also love how the chiffon feels so incredibly nice over the thicker layers of the dress’ skirt.

 

Thank you for joining me for this challenge! Come back for Pt. 3 next week ❤

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EGL Wardrobe Challenge 2019

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I’m sure plenty of lolitas have seen the above image floating around Instagram and I decided to give it a shot in lieu of a traditional wardrobe post this year. I will be posting my answers at the end of the week for the questions corresponding to said week. That just makes it easier for me since daily posting can get tough (I guess it isn’t much of a “challenge” then!) Big thanks to @thefabledfawn on Instagram for coming up with this challenge. Let’s get started!

1. Your Favorite Dress:

Charlotte’s Bear – Angelic Pretty (JSK)

This is, without a doubt, my absolute favorite dress! I literally dreamed about this dress when it came out and when I finally got my hands on it I basically wanted to live in it. Sadly, I haven’t had as many opportunities to wear it as I would like, but I really enjoy coordinating it in different ways by picking up on the muted pastels of the print. Also, Kira Imai is a goddess and those wide-eyed teddy bears are everything I ever needed in life.

2. The Most Recent Addition:

Fairy Crystal – Angelic Pretty (OP)

This was the first dress I have ever bought in person at an Angelic Pretty store. I was so excited to visit AP Paris this past December and I instantly fell in love with this OP. I had seen the print online before and didn’t think much of it, but the dress is so beautiful in real life. I love the bodice details with the gold buttons, the sheer sleeves, and how there is a panel of the print in front of the dress as opposed to being fully printed all around. However, my number one favorite thing is the squirrel on the print just relaxing among the apothecary jars and old books. How is this not the cutest thing?

 

3. You Dream Dress(es):

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Crystal Dream Carnival & Charlotte’s Bear – Angelic Pretty (JSKs)

Apart from Charlotte’s Bear, I also spent a lot of time searching for CDC. I originally fell in love with the navy colourway but I saw the lavender up for sale on Lace Market. I am so glad I got the lavender colourway instead because I truly believe it suits me better. CDC was my first ever dream dress and I will always treasure it because I wore it to my first brand tea party!

4. First (Or Oldest) Brand Piece:

Alice Bruges – Baby The Stars Shine Bright (JSK)

I remember being so incredibly happy when I received this dress. I literally held onto it for so long because I couldn’t believe I finally had a brand piece. Sadly, I haven’t been able to coordinate this dress successfully apart from maybe two times because the cut is a little odd for me. It is very high-waisted and did not fit me well before I lost a lot of weight. I still love it because of the very soft pastels and the summery vibes of the print.

5. Your Most Popular Brand:

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Angelic Pretty (duh…)

If you couldn’t already tell by all my answers so far, Angelic Pretty is my most popular brand in my wardrobe. There is just something about the way Angelic Pretty fits on me and the prints that draw me in. Although, if I find another random cross in an AP print I might actually lose it!

6. Your Favorite Coord:

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Decoration Dream – Angelic Pretty (JSK) 

I have to admit, I am really hard on myself when it comes to coordinates. I am a perfectionist to the core so I find it hard to experiment. In turn, my coordinates tend to be quite boring. However, being a perfectionist came in handy for this coord because I loved how all the colors matched. The blouse is from Infanta and it matched the AP wristcuffs perfectly. The dress, the AP cardigan, and the Bodyline shoes were as close to the same shade of pink as I’ll probably ever see in the entirety of my life as a lolita. Seriously, this coord makes me so happy.

Those are the questions for this week, friends! If you would like to see my wardrobe post video from last year I will leave a link right here:

Wardrobe Post 2018

Thanks for reading and let me know in the comments if you are doing this challenge as well ❤

My Winter Dreamland At Peggy Porschen

To say that visiting Peggy Porschen Cakes in London was a dream come true would be an understatement. A bit over-dramatic, yes, but an understatement all the same. For years I had been ooh-ing at every pretty picture this gem of a shop has posted on Instagram with their overarching theme of cute confectioneries and adorably charming decor. I dreamed of the day I would stand below the iconic door arrangement that changed with the seasons and taste one of the delectable sweets that made Peggy Porschen Cakes one of the most recognizable bakery boutiques in London. I want to preface my review with a quick thanks to my friend, Joanna, for inviting me on this weekend trip to London for her birthday and for reminding me that pictures might say a thousand words but the experience with a good friend is priceless.

Nestled in a pleasant yet unassuming neighborhood, Peggy Porschen Parlour is located in Belgravia, London. Seeing the pink exterior with its newly unveiled winter decorations sparked a similar feeling in me as seeing the tippy-top of Cinderella’s castle peering over other less meaningful structures on our regular trips to Disney World. To many this might sound over the top. Trust me when I say I am well aware that my attraction for cutely themed cafés is a odd one. However, I have longed dreamed of owning my own shop where I could let my obsession with sweets and the color pink take on it’s full form and Peggy Porschen is the pinnacle of everything I love.

We visited the shop at around 11:30 AM Saturday morning and it was quite easy to find by taking a bus from our hotel then walking for a few minutes. Thankfully, a crowd had not gathered outside yet and we were both able to take pictures of the store front without much interruption. The tables inside were full but there was plenty available seating outside. We opted to wait for an indoor table since the temperature was quite chilly and were thankfully seating within 5 minutes. Please note that I hear this is a rare occurrence as there is almost always a slightly longer wait and accurately a sizable line had formed outside very soon after our arrival.

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Upon entering, I immediately noticed the parlour was quite tiny yet cosy. There was a counter displaying an assortment of beautifully decorated cakes and cupcakes while adorable winter themed cookies wrapped for sale lined the wall. The smell was something I could only describe as what you imagine a “sugar rush” would smell like. We ordered our drinks and treats and after a great deal of necessary food snapshots and carefully posed pictures (if you didn’t take a picture were you even there??) we tucked in.

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We each ordered a slice of different layer cakes along with macarons and a specially themed snowman cupcake to share. Joanna chose a vanilla latte and after asking the waitress which drink came with the adorable snowflake cocoa art, I ordered the hot chocolate. The Lemon, Raspberry & Rose cake was tasty with a texture that almost likened to a lightly moistened rum cake. The jam in between the layers was the best pairing of sweet and tangy. Our favorite cake, however, was awarded to the Dark Chocolate Truffle Cake of which we didn’t even fathom taking a picture in the midst of stuffing our faces. The cake itself was fluffy and the frosting was rich and creamy. The dark chocolate assured it wasn’t too sickeningly sweet, but just right. The macarons were the perfect taste and texture: not too crumbly and not stiff either. As for the drinks, they were not just absolutely beautiful to look at but also very delicious and precisely what we needed on that crisp day. As a testament to their baking skills, the cupcake was still just as toothsome hours later when I finally had enough room from our sugar-filled breakfast.

On our way out, we stocked up on a few items we had been gawking at since we first sat down. I purchased a snowflake cookie and a tote bag. I was contemplating buying one of the two baking books they had on display but thought against it since I would be forced to carry a heavy book around the city all day. All in all, we spent a pretty penny but I have to admit the prices were worth the experience. The staff was amazingly patient and as sweet as the baked goods they sold. Both of us agreed that visiting Peggy Porschen was a highlight of our trip. My suggestion to any who are like me and live for pastels, cute decor, and sweet treats is to make sure and add Peggy Porschen in London to your must-visit travel list.

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Thanks for reading! Please let me know in the comments if there is an “Instagram famous” place you’ve always wanted to visit!

Links:

Peggy Porschen Website

Peggy Porschen Instagram

This is not a paid review and all of the pictures were taken by me.

5 Ways To Cope With Winter SAD

It’s 3:30 PM and what little sunlight managed to push through the seemingly ever present rain clouds today is now dissipating. Soon it will be as dark as it would be around 7:30 PM back home in Florida. I admit that I knew even before moving to Norway that the lack of sunlight had an immense effect on my mental health. Working a sunrise-to-sunset job back then gave me an inkling as to how both autumn and winter greatly influenced my motivation, mood, and general sense of worth. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is categorized as depression associated with seasonal changes. The symptoms and severity can vary from person to person, but the condition is usually accompanied by lack of interest in hobbies, feelings of sadness and hopelessness, appetite changes, and problems with sleep. It wasn’t until I moved to this beautiful Scandinavian country that I would come to realize all these symptoms, among others, would hit me full force. Thankfully, this is my second year experiencing the tough Norwegian winter and I have come up with a few ways to cope with SAD.

Please remember that these are just ways I personally try to cope with symptoms of SAD. This is not meant to be used in place of speaking to a medical professional or seeking mental health aid.

1) Take advantage of whatever bit of sunlight you can get!

Alright, this one might seem like common sense but you would be surprised to know that SAD saps away your motivation to do much of anything, even when there is a bit of light outside. If I manage to get out of bed that morning (if you don’t, that is OK! Tomorrow is another day!) and the forecast is looking promising, I take advantage to get outside and soak up as much sun as possible. Go for a spontaneous hike or simply go for a walk around your neighborhood. If you’re at work, skip eating lunch in that dark break room and opt for a meal out on your workplace patio or outdoor seating at a restaurant. If the weather is too chilly, spending a little break in your car will let you stay indoors but you can catch all those rays coming in through your windows.

2) Get excited for winter holidays.

No matter what you celebrate during the holiday season, get excited for it! Go all out and cover your house in seasonal decor. Adorn your space with fall leaves, pumpkins, and spiced candles. Plan a delicious dish you want to make for your traditional holiday dinners and perfect it! Maybe you really like those cute pine cones covered in fake snow you saw at the craft store and want to bring a winter wonderland feeling into your home. If you celebrate religious holidays, look forward to sharing those spiritually fulfilling experiences with friends or family. I used to be that grump that ranted about how much I HATED (oh yea, H-A-T-E-D) Christmas music or decoration going up too early. Although I do still think anytime before Halloween is way too early, I have gained a newfound appreciation for that holly jolly spirit everyone around here seems so incredibly obsessed with. Personally, it gives me a reason to deck my house in cute sparkling Christmas decor and reminds me that the sooner Christmas is here the sooner winter will be over.

3) Plan a lolita meetup.

I know its hard to let the summery floral print JSKs migrate to the back of your closet, but dust off those velvet pieces you keep saying you’ll wear when the weather gets cooler. Plan a lolita meetup with your comm to air out your winter wardrobe. The meet up can be seasonally themed or just any meet will do. The key is to get excited about something especially if you feel comfort in spending time your community or group of lolita friends. If you do not live near an active lolita community (as I do at the moment), you can plan a themed coordinate around autumn or winter and wear it out to a special event. Last year, I had a blast wandering around the local Christmas market in full lolita. Just make sure to keep warm and wear proper shoes if it’s snowing! You don’t want to fall and possibly ruin your precious dress (yes, this comes from experience!).

4) Retail therapy.

Yikes! This is a tricky one because it can get out of hand for some people, including me. In moderation, retail therapy can provide some motivation and excitement even when all you want to do is lay around all day bingeing on potato chips and old episodes of Drag Race. Buy yourself that adorable sweater dress you’ve been eyeing online or splurge on that eye shadow palette you’ve been dying to try out. Getting excited for winter garb doesn’t necessarily have to be limited to your lolita wardrobe. I personally find it much easier to muster motivation to go out if I want to wear a new and warm outfit that I had been saving up for. As I stated previously: everything in moderation. It can become a whole new problem if you overspend or have an addiction to shopping. Budget yourself, but also remember to treat yourself once in a while.

5) Plan a trip to sunnier places.

I get that this tip might be a bit hard to accomplish for those that work or do not have the means to travel. If you are able to, plan a nice trip to a warmer climate. Like a bird migrating south for the winter, I have been lucky enough to be able to travel to much sunnier places during this season. It gives me something to look forward to and helps me push through another dark and cold day. If you are unable to travel, plan a stay-cation or a relaxing spa day! Again, the key is to have something to look forward to so the days don’t feel endless.

What are some tips you have for coping with SAD or simply overcoming the winter blues? If you experience SAD during the spring and summer months, how do you cope with the feelings of depression? Leave a comment below and let me know!

The Importance of Loving The Things You Love

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“These are a few of my favorite things.”

“Love the things you love.” This seemingly redundant statement has become somewhat of a personal mantra. I have injected these words into my daily life so fully that I sometimes find myself obliviously muttering them under my breath. Although this habit might have garnered several side-eyed looks from perplexed strangers at the local home goods store, it has allowed me to be kinder to myself about my preferences and hobbies.

Throughout most of my teenage years I was constantly criticized for the things I loved. A lot of us remember our high school days and if you were anything like me you were what most people called an “anime nerd”. Yes, I was that kid that wore anime merchandise to school like it was the latest trend to hit the catwalks of fashion capitals around the world. My table at lunch was invisible under the array of manga and sketch pads illustrating cute anime girls with eyeballs two-thirds the size of their faces. You could hear our group shrieking from a mile away and goodness forbid you were the target of the infamous “glomp”. To this day I still shudder at my unabashed displays of cringe, but once I push past my sudden desire to wash my memories with industrial strength bleach I realize how integral those days were to the framework of my identity. I found out who I was and what I loved through those moments and, not unlike most teenagers, my passions would shape who I was to become as an adult. Sadly, I lived in quite an abusive household where I had to keep those passions and even my own personality stifled in order to survive. After finally removing myself from that environment at eighteen years old, I vowed to never let anyone make me feel ashamed of who I was and the things I loved. In hindsight, that was much easier said than done.

During college I held steadfast to my vow. My poor walls barely saw the light of day under a continuous layer of posters displaying all my nerdy interests. I remember my roommate drew an invisible line with her finger to mark the point in between our beds were my “Asian guys”, as she called them, could not cross into her space as if my love for K-Pop was comparable to a dangerous and highly contagious disease. Even then, I didn’t mind and you could usually find me quietly curled in bed with my laptop or locked in my bathroom closet where no one could hear me screech out the songs to my favorite musicals (it sounded good in my head, I promise). After college, my desire to really embrace myself for my hobbies skyrocketed with the introduction of J-Fashion into my life. Lolita gave me a sense of belonging. I felt like I looked good and I loved it. No one could tell me otherwise. (Psssst! Past Izzy, some of those outfits were not the best of choices but you do you, girl.)

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Let’s fast forward to the past year. My husband and I made a huge decision that would very swiftly roundhouse kick that confidence right in it’s figurative face. Upon moving to Norway, I felt elated at the chance to use up my free time as a newly unemployed housewife to pursue my hobbies: fashion, cooking, writing, sewing, and generally living my best and cutest life. I went into IKEA with one thought in mind: “Does this come in pink?”. I had a full room with which to do what I pleased and you bet I was going to cram as much *~kawaii~* into it as physically possible. It began with a new acquaintance stepping into my home for the first time and peering into my room. Upon seeing the copious amount of pink, she squealed with delight and asked if I had a daughter. The fall of her face from an expectant smile to an incredulous sneer after I said it was all mine was the first nudge at the latch that caged the insecurities I was all too familiar with. I had already been struggling with the stress of the move and making new friends, so this encounter only made my anxiety laser-focus on one tangible aspect about my personality.

In the coming months and after never-ending stares from locals even while wearing “normie” clothes (I get it. I’m new and I don’t look like everyone else. Get over it!), my confidence was pitifully puddled on the floor. Not only was I anxious about acclimating to a new culture and language, but I couldn’t even bring myself to turn to the things that had once made me so happy in fear of being permanently labeled as an outsider by the small-town, neutral-colored sportswear clad people of my new home. I knew most of the fear was not justified. I’m sure now most people do not care, but in the blur of social anxiety logic is commonly distorted. Thankfully, I found a good group of friends that enjoyed me for the things I loved and encouraged me to find my confidence in them. With their help along with that of my husband, my therapist, and my newfound obsession with the K-Pop boyband BTS (Yeah yeah. Fight me!) with their message of loving oneself, I started to feel the spark of enthusiasm for lolita and my other hobbies once more. I stepped out into town in a full coordinate and through what felt like sprinting a marathon surrounded by stares and whispers I made it with my friends and husband waiting at the finish line cheering encouraging compliments. I felt myself smiling more often and caring less often about what others thought of me. “Yes, I am the girl that wears pink frilly dresses to go grocery shopping.” “No, I don’t want the children’s menu, thanks.” I also started to open my ears to compliments from strangers. “Thank you, I do feel like I stepped out of a fairy tale.” “Yes, I really do promise my legs are not cold wearing just tights. I’m from Florida. This is a relief!”. Slowly, but surely, my personal mantra was making a comeback and I began to love the things I love.

This time last year, I found myself at another turning point in my life where I was wondering who I was and how much my identity meant to me. The things I loved, all my pink frills and delicate lace, my Sanrio plushes and figurines of pink-haired anime girls with disproportionately large chests, my music tastes and disdain for anything other than dresses or skirts, would become the bullet points of my life-long battle with low self-esteem and social anxiety. Thanks to this coupled with Seasonal Affective Disorder, I was left in a depressive state and questioning my decisions to uproot from my life back in the U.S. Today, as I stare at the darkening skies of Autumn anticipating the dreaded sun-less days of Winter (insert Game of Thrones reference here), I am determined to ground myself in my passions and make it through another season. Growing up, I guarded my identity through my hobbies with all of my might in order to survive a life that tried to rip it from my grasp. Now, when I mumble those words under my breath while admiring a cute pink and gold coffee mug at the local home goods store, I know I am mentally adding another layer to the armor that will help me through the rest of my time abroad and away from everything I have ever known. For me, there is true importance to loving the things you love.

Kystpikene: A Coastal Gem

During my first visit to Norway, I found myself alone in a hotel room fighting off the symptoms of jet lag. I grew tired of nodding off in bed at twelve in the afternoon and decided to take a walk around what would soon be my new hometown. Ten minutes into my chilly and sluggish stroll, I stumbled upon a coffee shop that immediately called to me. Not only was my body screaming for a surge of caffeine, but anyone that knows me can attest to my love for warm and inviting coffee houses. In a world full of cold and impersonal chain coffee shops, Kystpikene was a breath of fresh air that smelled of deliciously brewed coffee beans.

Kystpikene is located in Brekstad, Norway, a charming small city on the coast of the Trondheimsfjord. Kystpikene’s owners strive to provide a cozy atmosphere that welcomes visitors to sit inside the shop with adorable mismatching tables and comfy couch or at the outdoor seating area where blankets are often provided to keep customers warm on chilly days. A majority of the shop’s adornments are available for sale along with knitted items, jams, and other special treats. For those who appreciate a nice place to sit and read, the shop has a “take one, leave one” book corner.

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The menu featuring some interesting and tasty options

I admit I can be a bit picky when it comes to my coffee. In my defense, my Cuban-American household has always taken coffee brewing very seriously so I was excited to see that I lived near a coffee house that definitely knows how to do coffee right. My favorite picks are the kaffe mocca if I’m in the mood for something to keep me warm from the often frigid norwegian weather and the iskrem kaffe, or ice cream coffee, for those days when everyone is out of their homes trying to soak up the warm sun.

 

 

Coffee is definitely not the only thing they do right here. On my first visit I tried some appetizing lunch items such as the Boboli Kylling and Pan Catalan. Their blueberry crumble is another do-not-miss item along with an array of mouth-watering desserts.

 

 

If you ever find yourself taking a stroll through the coastal town of Brekstad, Norway in search for good coffee and delicious food or just want an inviting place to chat with friends or read a book, Kystpikene offers all that and more.

Check out their Facebook page:

Kystpikene Facebook

My Ongoing Struggle With Body Positivity

(Content Warning: Childhood Abuse)

A side-by-side comparison of me being underweight during the height of my abuse and now.

My journey with body positivity does not start as most stories do and I am not ignorant to the fact that I was privileged in that aspect. In a Latin-American household it is not uncommon to hear words like “skinny” and “fatty” being thrown around as pet names. In Spanish these names are merely terms of endearment and yet they hold such a sinister influence on the evolution of my struggle with accepting my own body. Growing up, instead of having parents and family members offering their “tried and true” diet tips while pinching my baby fat I was praised for always keeping a slim frame. I saw the way my sister suffered through the constant nitpicking at her weight and the things she ate while I was never in fear of having a bag of chips or a cupcake snatched from my fingers. I didn’t need to hide my food like she did. I was conditioned to believe I was doing something right and she was doing something wrong.

I vividly remember hearing a group of middle school classmates at lunch time whispering about how unfair it was that I was so skinny and my impulsive response to justify that I had tried to gain weight but no matter how much or what I ate I just always “looked like a skeleton.” I pretended to feel embarassed about my abnormally low weight, but in retrospect I admittedly revelled in the attention my jutting collarbones and visible ribcage brought. My heart skipped a beat whenever another girl wished her arms and stomach were as thin as mine and I would tell her that she wasn’t fat and that she was beautiful. Even now I look back at my supposed good intentions in these interactions only to realize how I never equated being larger as beautiful. “You aren’t fat! You are beautiful!” is a phrase at which I now find myself rolling my eyes.

Despite all the positive attention I received for my figure, I was not spared from the typical bullying past most bo-po stories hold in common. I was constantly teased at school for my curly hair, thick glasses, large forehead, and big ears. I spent hours crying in front of the mirror hating all the things that made me me, but one thing those bullies couldn’t touch was my weight and I held onto that like precious gold. My relationship with food was a strange one as I never feared food as a child because of the possibility of getting fat. My metabolism was so fast I could have eaten anything I liked, however I was absolutely disgusted by food. Just the thought of having food in my mouth churned my stomach and I pushed away every plate of food placed in front of me. I believe this might have stemmed from an adverse experience regarding food that I generalized and simultaneously repressed so I don’t consider this as a relevent factor in my body acceptance story.

My journey takes a dark turn the moment my mother met a man on an online chat group and he came to live with us. My reluctance to go into the details of this story still remains a struggle for me that I one day hope to address, but this post is not one of them. Nevertheless, I am fully aware of the impact this ten year long abuse had on my self-worth and awareness of my own body. This is where society’s constant message of thin equals beautiful and sexually attractive aimed at even children like myself came into play. Simply put, I convinced myself I was chosen to live a life of misery because of my weight. I was at fault for everything that was happening to me because my figure had enticed my abuser. Instead of intentionally trying to tarnish my figure by eating as much as I could to make him find me repulsive I chose to make sure that I kept his attention on me in fear that if he moved on from me he would target my younger sister. It wouldn’t be until years after the abuse that the cloud of self-blaming thought processes would disperse and I accepted the fact that none of it was my fault. That I was only eight years old when it all started and there was nothing I did to “entice” this evil person. He was just that: an evil evil monster.

After escaping that toxic household, I found myself sharing an apartment with five other girls for my third year of college and my weight related obsession heightened to a new level. There I was, finally the sole master of my own body for the first time in what felt like forever and this new and strange feeling threw me in for a loop. During the abuse, I manipulated people and my surroundings to protect myself as best as I could. I felt like I had to control everything in order to keep myself from falling apart and losing my sense of self. After the abuse, that sense of control was gone and in it’s place a void was filled by obsessive thoughts about my weight. My body started to fill out into a “normal” (what even is normal, really?) size for a woman my age not experiencing extreme levels of anxiety as I had been, but my brain took that as me losing control of myself. I would stand in front of the bathroom mirror I shared with a roommate and pinch every inch of my body in digust while she assured me I was not fat. I hated myself every time I ate anything “unhealthy” and found myself logging into pro-eating disorder webpages only to in turn feel guilty about that and be left in a crying mess. My ideas about what a sexual relationship with a person should be was distorted and I found myself involved with a person who decided his attention toward me was only warranted whenever he needed entertainment. I was perfectly fine with that because any positive attention was good attention and this was one I had chosen this time. 

To this day, I still struggle just as much as I did back in college. It’s been four years since I moved out from that apartment and ended whatever relationship I had with that person. I would love to say that things got better, but I would be lying if I said that I now accept my body just the way it is every single day. I would give anything to say that I don’t constantly have intrusive, guilt-ridden thoughts about what I have eaten or how much I haven’t worked out. That I love the size of my thighs and the thickness of my arms. Scrolling through body positivity hashtags on Instagram and reading all the stories of overcoming self-hating thoughts leave me feeling guilty for not being anywhere near that point even when I know these people on the internet don’t always feel so comfortable in their own skin.

I have put off talking about my weight issues for a long time. Every time I get close to sharing my experiences I revert back to the mislead idea that I don’t have it as bad as other people and that people will think I am just writing about this to make others feel sorry for me. I read somewhere this is a common trait in individuals who have experienced abuse but I cannot help but think that way. Still, I force myself to talk about this because if there is at least one person that can relate to my story and know they are not alone I feel like it is worth any backlash I fear might come about posting this blog.

I know my journey is not finished. I have a long ways to go and I am working on getting there. Every day is a struggle and I am so grateful to have a husband that allows me to share my intrusive thoughts with him and works to discredit them with me. This is only the first part of my posts regarding body acceptance. I look forward to diving into my own experience with body positivity in lolita and my thoughts on the “bo-po” movement on social media.
Thanks for reading!