Here Comes the Queen

I’ve been thinking a lot about relationships lately.  Relationships and Body Image.

I’ve been seriously considering my dating life and I have come to the conclusion that I am most definitely a Charlotte.

Since I was old enough to think all I’ve ever wanted to do was be a stay at home mom with a husband, a couple of kids, a white picket fence a minivan and well…at least one maid.

I know that goes against all you feminists who believe women should do whatever they want – I agree with that, but I also just really want a family, a husband. I want to share my life with someone and make life long memories in our own little circle of weird.

I love that I am not really that afraid to be my true self, and that I can have sex and enjoy it but what I love most is that I do not or rather will not, settle for something less than I deserve.

For almost ten years I stayed as far away from healthy connections to other people because I was afraid of being hurt. Mostly I just wasn’t ready to open myself up after the horror that was my twenty-third year of life upon this earth.

The events of that entire year resonate with me, they affect me in a way that I realize now will stay with me forever.

Being abused has affected how I behave as a friend, a girlfriend, a wife, a mother. In every way that makes me a woman – a human being – I have been altered.

I know that isn’t an incredibly profound statement but it’s one that I was never really able to put into words before. There is a freedom in being able to say that out loud. Try it with me:

Being abused has affected how I behave as a friend, a girlfriend, a wife, a mother. In every way that makes me a woman – a human being – I have been altered.

Being abused caused a ripple effect that has made it incredibly difficult for me to connect to other human beings, especially men.

I am as they say, waiting for the other shoe to drop – because it always has.

That is however no way to live.

Over the last nine to ten years I have of course had sex with men (Sorry Mom, sorry Grandma) (I’m not really sorry.) and those occurrences for a very long time made me feel guilty. I felt ashamed for enjoying sex and my sexuality because I was a victim.

I felt like because I’d been abused I’d somehow lost the right to enjoy sex.

It wasn’t until “A” asked me “Don’t we deserve this?” that my thought process began to change. It was that deeply sensual and personal moment that I realized that yes, I do enjoy to be touched, loved, appreciated. I deserve to feel all the things that women who’ve never been abused get the pleasure of feeling.

I have the right to feel pleasure.

I have a friend who has been sexually assaulted (I can’t name her out of respect) and has found a way to enjoy her sexuality and not feel the shame and guilt (so it appears) that some of us feel after being assaulted or abused.

I took a photo of myself the other day and while I can see, very clearly that I am much happier than I have ever been before I can also see how much weight I have allowed myself to gain.

In a phrase I’ve let myself go.

After I was raped at sixteen I hid myself with heavy baggy clothing and hoodies and sweat shirts. Bad hair and an even worse attitude.

Now I look at myself and I see a big, beautiful woman.

Now keep in mind that I am “The” voice of “you’re beautiful no matter what” but I am tired of looking fat in my photos. I am tired of having low energy and being sore – bad back, sore feet, tired,  all the time. I am tired of being fat. 

This isn’t about looks though. I truly believe that our bodies are our temples and I’ve treated mine like shit. I want better I deserve better.

screenshot_10I want to walk down the aisle in a beautiful dress, I want to have tumbles of curls hanging down my back and I want to be that magazine photo bride. Is that selfish? is it arrogant or narcissistic? Probably.

I remember when we had Target (will never shop there again) down the street from our house. I admit I was excited – Target USA has some great fashion lines. Target Canada? Blows chunks.

I wanted a pair of new jeans so off to Target I went, I tried on every pair of jeans they had in the entire store, before the girl admitted they probably didn’t have my size.

Do you know how truly embarrassing and humiliating that was?  It was almost as if she knew I was too fat and let me try them on just to make me feel like crap.

I didn’t scream I didn’t yell but I did make it very clear she sucked as a human being.

As of this moment I am wearing leggings. Camouflage Leggings.

That’s right the fat girl is wearing leggings suck it bitch.

It’s strange that as I write this I am becoming more comfortable with calling myself fat.

I am not big, I am not heavy I am over weight, I am FAT. I LOVE IT!

Not that I’m fat obviously but that I can say that without shame. I am so over being ashamed.

This weekend my friend Stephen – an amazing phenomenal artist is going to be taking some photos of me. At first I was like “let’s do this with some semi-nudes because I wanna show that I’m proud of my body.” However as much as I do still want to do that I also want to throw in some shots of me working out, showcasing my desire to get healthy.

These photos are going to be a record of me beginning my new life. My new true self.

I look back at some of my old photos and I can tell you exactly what I was feeling. I look at some of my new ones and the only thing that comes to mind is “Happy”.

All of these words you’ve read are my way of saying that I am a Charlotte. I am ready to start dating – to find the man of my dreams. To find my soul-mate.

I am ready to put myself out there and find the guy that I am going to marry. Maybe he won’t show up right this second but I’m no longer waiting for him to show up. I am no longer going to spend my life living on the couch waiting – I am going to put myself out there and enjoy spending time with men who want to spend time with me.

Several years ago a man I love more than I can express in words said to me “Not all men hit.” I laughed at him then because in my world yes, all men hit. Not always with fists or feet, but sometimes with words and emotions.

Yesterday I found him again and he said “I love this new freedom you are showing.” The truth is I have always been free I just haven’t showed that freedom to the world.

It means the world to me that this person recognizes the difference in me, because he’s someone I’ve always looked up to and respected. He’s also someone who has always seen through my bullshit. (If you read this don’t let it go to your head :P)

I can’t wait for my photo shoot. I can’t wait to see how the pictures turn out – I just hope that I do a good job and don’t let Stephen down.