Fancy’s Swimsuit Edition…..Wearing Whatever the Flip I want……..

I typed. Retyped. Started a new draft, with new thoughts. Went back to the old draft. I made sure I covered all the past things that got me here (mean high school girls, chocolate gravy for breakfast as a little girl, hysterectomy at a very young age).  And all that just took up too many words and seemed to STILL miss the one main point of this post, all together.

All I really need to say is this….I have fallen in in love with my body. And with that said, I have some killer swimsuits this season that need their moment.  So please allow me to introduce you to some great swimsuits for those of us with a little oomph and extra! 🙂  Of course, they come with a few paragraphs of life lesson, which I hope you won’t mind!  Frankly, I just do not care about how uncomfortable you are with how fantastic I feel about myself, nor do I care to suffer through an Arkansas summer more covered than necessary (I HATE THE HEAT)!

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It makes zero sense to be this in love with a body that needs so much improvement. But I truly love it. I actually don’t want it to look too much differently than it does now. I mean that. I have come a LONG WAY in ceasing to compare myself with other bodies.  It feels SO GOOD to look at a pic of another woman and think “she is so pretty” or “I love that outfit” versus the other horrible comparisons I would do, or even worse, trying to find someone that I thought looked bigger and worse than me so that I would feel better about what I currently looked like. I am so ashamed to admit that I did that.

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I want this body to be healthier. I don’t want gravity to take over. I need the fine lines and wrinkles to simmer down.  However, this poor body has carried me through some terrible times. It has had the worst neglect and too many “I’ll start tomorrow”, to count. It has been beaten and spit on. In it’s current state, literally every day that I wake up, it has to decide to fight against an illness I like to pretend I don’t have. Lately, walking at all is more of an accomplishment than I have shared with most of my people.

 

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It could’ve failed me long ago. It could’ve put out a completely different reflection, based on what I have put in it over time. But it hasn’t (thankfully!!). So, I owe it a bit more credit than I have given it in the past. PLUS, I decorate it pretty well on most days!

I know how much work it took, to only take way too long to get here.  The last thing I want is to contribute to any other little girl or woman watching me attack myself and thinking it’s ok.  I try to be especially careful of what I say about myself when I am in front of my nieces or friend’s kids (or on first dates, for the matter).  It’s VERY important to me that I do all that i can to influence them to value themselves, just the way they are. It is my passion that every girl feel good about and love herself.  I mean that with every fiber in this newly loved body!

So when I walked out of my room in my swimsuit and my nieces said “Oh Auntie Ricia, I love that suit.  You look so so pretty!!!”, and when they were the ones who pushed for me to “put it on your Instagram” …..I figured today was just as good as any to do the swimsuit showoff I have wanted to do for so long.  I want them to see me loving my body and being ok with whomever may see it.

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I had been waiting for the perfect situation (makeup, hair, tan, someone to help me snap the pics, perfect weather, not bloated….miracle major weight loss, bla bla and so on)…when all I really needed were a couple of 8 year olds saying “put your hand on your hip and smile bigger”.  I wanted to even hire someone with mad photoshop skills to do a little smoke and mirrors.  But, that would defeat the purpose of the lesson, right?  Hold please, I need to pause and take another deep breath.  I cannot believe I’m doing this.

 

 ANYWAY……the process was pretty hilarious and has made for an awesome memory for them.  We got caught in a storm while we were at the pool, doing the initial shoot.  We powered through and then made a mad dash back to my apartment, completely drenched (see “after pic directly below)! Even though most of those pics were ruined and we had to call reinforcements in for help, the littles learned a lot about dancing in the rain and finding the good in not ideal situations.  They went from being a bit scared of the storm, to getting back upstairs and saying “THAT WAS SO MUCH FUN, AUNTIE RICIA”!!!  Mission accomplished!!!

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I think it’s funny how this whole life thing is working out. I’m aware of the bad decisions that got me in this physical state and I long to be healthier. I had no idea how hard the mental road to reverse lifestyle and upbringing would be. I get SO FRUSTRATED that now my body just can’t cooperate that easily to just get healthier.  I am angry at an illness that provides hurdles and still struggle with the looks I get from people when I try to explain (you know that look of “if you would just lose some weight you would……be this or that).  But even in this state. I’m also the happiest I have ever been. I love how kind life is back to you , when you try to work alongside it versus fighting it or going your own road.

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The scale may not show it, but in many ways I have shed weight. The weight of toxic people (and more of that is in the works). The weight of trying to please others. The weight of saying yes all the time. The weight of worrying myself sick about what others might think or how they spin their side of a story (it’s really none of my business what people think or say of me). That alone has probably shed thousands of pounds 😛.  I am consciously trying to be kinder and speak love and encouragement to others.  I am declaring that I absolutely refuse, from this moment forward, to make one woman feel better, by tearing another down (i.e. Oh his new girlfriend is way uglier than you).

This week, my nieces showed me that they genuinely think I am beautiful. So I guess I should let myself believe it too. As a matter of fact, I have no intentions of hanging out with anyone who doesn’t see me the way they do, anymore! I hope when they are older, they come across this rambling and know what a cool day this turned out to be!

I’m promising myself that I will believe in this post.  I will not worry or let my mind wonder to a place where there are screenshots and memes made and conversations behind my back!  I will try my best not to worry about a few that I know would never say anything to my face, but will definitely not agree that I should be this comfortable being this fat, much less putting it all on the internet.  I’m not going to give in to worrying about how much better I would look if I actually had knees 🙂 (for the record, I never really have, even at my smallest).

I hope that if you’ve read this far and browsed the included pics, that you see joy and that you feel inspired to be just a little nicer to yourself when you sport your next swimsuit.  And lastly, I hope that if you came across this and use it to shame, belittle, or talk about “did you see what Alicia had the nerve to post of herself….that girl is too big to be wearing a two piece”…..that you have a few days of explosive diarrhea! :p

I will be forever thankful for three little girls who made me feel like the prettiest girl in the world (and a few friends who go out of their way to make me feel that way often!)!

The end (for now).

P.s.

I wore the two piece the rest of the day, while we played and enjoyed some sunshine. It felt so fire!! Look at this look! It screams comfortable and relaxed!!!

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Swimsuit Info/Links:

Red two piece

Black/White Wrap

Black w/ aztec-ish trim

Gingham top

Black and White Strapless and RWB Paisley: Walmart (two years ago, no longer available) – but here is a link to their great swimsuit options from this season 

When big girls go swimming….and celebrate Memorial Day alone

I can’t believe I am about to type this. But, I have had too much time off this weekend. I NEED to go back to work. I actually should’ve worked today but chose a “mental health day” of crafting and mindless Netflix watching instead. I also forced myself to put on a swimsuit and visit the pool of the new apartment complex I moved into. Interesting things happen when big girls enter the pool force. Interesting things also happen when I spend three whole days alone. Below is a recap.

1.  The first thing I like to do before heading to the pool when a friend will be accompanying me is make them sign a disclaimer that they will never speak of what they see. You have entered into a special circle if I am willing to let you see my old lady, huge flower print, skirted swimsuit. So, when my friend Tamara agreed to join me on our afternoon off AND bring summer drinks, I wanted to be sure she understood what was about to go down. I try to get a good base tan (because brown fat is better than white fat in my opinion) but even my skin color pigments can’t hide all that is my body. You are to act like you don’t see all my cellulite and you are also to pretend that I have a “thigh gap”. Basically, just keep your eyes above the chest and we will be fine.
P.S. Tamara and I had the most lovely day. We don’t feel the need to talk the entire time to entertain each other. So we sipped beverages, laughed a bit, and soaked up the sun. It was pretty close to a perfect day. Especially since we had the whole area to ourselves.

2.  Children at the pool. It’s a great idea. Bring them, throw them in the water, and wear them out while you lay there pretending that you are a million miles away (I plan to do that on my upcoming trip with just myself and my two 5 year old nieces). What’s even better is when you can provide them with toys to keep them entertained longer. What’s not better is when said tools are misused and single girls who are trying to pretend like they are on a beach, with a man, and fruity drinks. Watch where you aim those nerf water guns you sweet little monsters. Someday you’ll understand.

3.  Making out. STOP IT. STOP IT RIGHT NOW. ESPECIALLY if you are older. If you appear to be in your mid forties sporting a tween bikini and your man is wearing affliction swim trunks AND you simply showed up to sit on the side of the pool and stick your tongue down each other’s throats all while hugging a little too tightly…….then I reserve the right to text every friend that will listen to me and post on every social media site I am on judging you. Yes, only God can judge. But I also believe God wouldn’t approve of you in that behavior (especially when kids with nerf guns are present)……..and I refuse to believe that God’s sense of humor includes sending you to the pool to make me jealous of your make out session. It took all I had not to chunky dunk beside them to break it up.

4.  One girl of a bigger size showed up in a tshirt and long shorts. I felt bad for her. She was doing little things to position herself well and kept looking around as if she was worried people were looking. She also looked uncomfortably hot. I remember being that girl. I refrained from giving her my influencer “love yourself” talk but it did make me thankful for my journey. It took a LONG time to layout in front of total strangers in a swimsuit (thank you Carnival cruise 2013 for solving most of my swimsuit self esteem problems). My swimsuit is actually probably 7 years old because the process of swimsuit buying makes me physically ill (and the last time I did it before my cruise in 2013, I left Dillards crying). But….I promised myself in 2014 that I would be kind to myself. And I would do things for my mental health whether they made me comfortable or not. Laying out at the pool is one of my most favorite escapes. So, I bought two new swimsuits and paraded myself right down to that pool all weekend. I didn’t even flinch when barbie entered with her posse. I just laid there. On my stomach, butt exposed, hair pulled up and headphones in. I didn’t even suck in when I walked by what appeared to be a single dad on my way to get in for 2 minutes to cool off (2 minutes is all you could stand….the water was COLD). Plus, he was wearing Hanes underwear with his swim trunks (i know this because they were sticking out) so he has no room to pass judgement on me 🙂 I didn’t even run inside when I discovered I missed a spot shaving and knew that if anyone got close enough they could be startled. Nope. I just laid there. And pretended like I was a million miles away. And it was the best thing I could’ve done for myself.

5.  I am declaring arm exposure this summer. Every summer I stress out so much over the opinions of others should I wear sleeveless shirts or dresses. What will they say? Will they be concerned that my elbows have suffocated being covered up by my flabby upper arms that seem to be drooping over them now? Will men not find me attractive? UGH……so tired just typing that. Guess what? I DO NOT CARE. I am a woman with hot flashes like no other. I am a woman who needs to do more than serious toning efforts. But, the retail industry isn’t making it any easier on us when they make 99% of their summer tops to expose the arms. And, in case you didn’t catch it earlier. I’m hot. ALL THE TIME. So, for now I’m declaring that I am going to make myself be ok being sleeveless. Ask me how that goes when I’m trying to figure out what to wear to a gala on Friday night with a date. Who wants to start an arm revolution with me? Who wants to give me toning miracle tips? 🙂

6.  I crafted. A lot. Basically the last three days consisted of waking up late, going to the pool, coming back inside and crafting while watching Netflix. The pool time and the hours of alone time and crafting were better for me than I would’ve ever thought. I’ll be sharing “when poor girls craft” with you later! I need to recover from hot glue gun finger burns, paint stains on my cute manicure, exacto knife slices and failed pinterest project attempts.

 

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HAPPY SUMMER!!! I have a feeling this is going to be one of the best ones yet! I think it’s going to be so great because I am promising myself kindness. And I think the alone time is going to be so much better than I would’ve ever imagined. Love yourself. Jump in the pool. 20140526-223759-81479503.jpg