Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Be You

My daughter recently designed and painted this mural in her high school hallway with the Sexuality and Gender Acceptance club at her high school. This is not her coming out story. She has not chosen to come out as any particular stripe of the rainbow.

But her message is important for more than just the lgbtqia2s+ folx. 

Be you. 

Unapologetically, transparently, authentically you. 

I like to think I already knew this and did this. But there are a few secret pockets of shame hidden away. 

Since I started working full time, almost two years ago, I have become shockingly sedentary. I got a full time job about a month after covid shut the world down. Before that, I was not really working out, but I was grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning the house, weeding the garden, and generally doing the things. 

Then covid hit. I started working 8.5 hour days and then 9.5 hour days. I got groceries delivered. The house degenerated into squalor until we felt comfortable having someone in to clean. We got lots of pizza and I did none of the things. I sat all day and worked. And then ate pizza. And then slept. Rinse and repeat. 

My body became a weak and soft vehicle for my brain. 

Nothing wrong with a weak and soft vehicle. My brain is a delight. I'm rocking this job and I'm a loving wife and mother, a good friend, a good human. My body is the least of what I offer the world. 

But. Like. So weak. So soft. Excellent for snuggling. Not so effective for living a long, healthy life. Not awesome for the making of the serotonin.

My work did a wellness challenge this month. It wasn't the usual ableist stuff like how many miles can you run. Not, thank goodness, a weight loss challenge (gag). It was inclusive. Yes, push ups and sit ups and steps, but also drinking water, eating fruits and veggies, reading for pleasure, journaling.

It was team based, so I added a couple of behaviors I wouldn't have normally done to get points for my team. I did the push ups almost every day, broken up into sets. At first, I could only do a handful. Two weeks later, I can do more. A lot more. 

The challenge is over. I'm still doing push ups. I'm doing bicycles. I'm doing squats and hand weight exercises (biceps, triceps, and rows), which weren't part of the original challenge. 

I'm getting stronger. 

I'm doing these exercises in 5-10 minute increments multiple times a day, so easy to fit into my day. Easier than 30 or 60 minute workout all at once. More fun. More joyful.  

I posted about this process on the book of faces and two people have reached out to let me know this made a difference to them, to see my transparent process. To see my secret shame and my process with it. It helped them to look at their own movement in a new way. 

Just by being me. 

Unapologetically, transparently, authentically me. 
There is so much depth of power in being you. Be you.

Thursday, April 19, 2018


You guys, I’m not gonna lie.  I’m coming out of a rough few years.  I don’t even know what it is, but I’ve been really disconnected. It was (is?) likely depression, but not the way I know depression.  For me, depression was always crying and sadness and worthlessness and thinking the world would be better off without me in it.  This was none of that. I felt ok.

I felt…. ok.  Just low energy. Sleeping extra.  Just… fine.

I connected recently with a friend over facebook messenger and she asked me what was up with me.  She said she knew what was up with my kids, because of my regular facebook posts about their antics and accomplishments, but what was up with ME?

Uh, nothing?

Nothing has been new in a long time.  I haven’t been exercising.  Haven’t been wearing makeup. (Not that I need makeup. But it’s an indication for me that I’m sinking into a kind of invisibility that isn’t good for my soul.) Haven’t been writing. My big news and pretty much the only thing that makes it onto facebook from my life is that I have been cooking a lot. So, like, food I guess?

But it felt fine.  It even felt like self care sometimes.  Like I was giving myself down time. Letting myself sleep.  Not demanding too much of myself.  Not insisting that I sparkle all the time. It’s ok not to have to sparkle all the time. I can just be non-sparkly. It’s fine.

Except I’m not doing any of the things that nourish me.  Other than cooking and eating, both of which truly are things I enjoy, I haven’t been doing much of anything. This is my life, the only life I get. Pam, get off the couch! Or don’t, but at least write something from the couch other than witty little snippets on facebook.

I’ve been trying to figure out how to come out of this, and I made a realization.  Part of the problem is that I am a nocturnal human living in a day walker world.  And all of you who are like, “just get up early and you’ll fall asleep earlier,” no.  No I won’t. I had to be at the bus stop before 7am all through high school and I still had trouble falling asleep at night.  My energy starts to rise around 10pm, no matter how early I got up, no matter how tired I am. My energy buzzes from 10pm-2am.  In a perfect world, my bedtime would be 4am.

So I’ve decided to try going with it. 

I got a reflective vest and lights for walking at night.  My neighborhood is safe.  Cars would be the main risk, so I want to make sure I’m visible.  I’ve done post-midnight walks a few times now, and it’s so soul nourishing.  I breathe in the night and feel alive and happy. Plus I’m moving my body, which is good for all of the things. 

Maybe for me, coming out of low level depression doesn’t mean coming out into the sunshine.  Maybe it means coming out into the night. Maybe instead of letting the sun shine on my skin (which no, because my skin hates it), I need to let the moon and stars shine on me, my skin activated by the chill. Maybe I need to run my hands over my cold skin and breathe in the quiet dark, all by myself.  Maybe I don’t need to reconnect with the world at all right now.  Maybe I just need to reconnect with myself, all by myself, in the cool quiet of 2am.

Maybe the next time someone asks me what I’ve been up to, I’ll tell them that I have been dancing naked in my backyard in the middle of the night, to the music only my soul can hear, moonbathing. 

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

No bra, no problem

A few months ago, I started a new experiment.  I stopped wearing a bra.

It all started because I have been experiencing a dramatic increase in anxiety symptoms since a certain catastrophic election in November. With that anxiety came debilitating panic attacks.  And over time, I started to notice that the constriction of a bra band was often a catalyst to panic. 

Discarded bra pile at Camp Throwback
I’ve never liked bras.  I always took them off immediately upon arriving home, or sooner.  When I couldn’t find a bra, chances are that
all of my in-heavy-rotation bras were in the center console of my minivan, having been stripped off on my way home from somewhere.  But the panic thing was new.

In the end, I decided that my mental health was more important than my boobs being ever so slightly further away from the ground.

By any metric, I “need” a bra.  I can hold a pencil under my boob.  Or a broom.  Or my phone. Or a full wine bottle (yes, really). I wear a 40i bra and I’m 43 years old. Those things aren’t holding themselves up. The gravity is real.

But… do I?  Need a bra?  Need it for what?  Some people are uncomfortable without a bra.  Their backs hurt, or the underboob sweat bothers them, or for whatever reason they prefer to wear a bra.  That’s great.  But I don’t.  Despite my giant fun bags, my back has never hurt from going braless. Underboob sweat happens.  I mean, yeah.  But that’s less bothersome than the constricted feeling of wearing a bra.  I’m happier and more comfortable without one.  (Except for when I exercise.  My sports bra is a magnificent feat of engineering. Glamorise adjustable. You’re welcome!)

The supposed “need” is about a couple of things. Boob altitude.  Boob shape. Nipple visibility. And the bounce.

Without a bra, my boobs are lower, further apart and more bottom-heavy, having of nipples, and bouncy. Those things are all just true facts of my body. It’s really not that big of a deal.  Except… in public... is it?  A big deal? Is it really a big deal if random strangers at the grocery store know that my 43-year-old body has slightly saggy boobs with nipples on them? I mean, most boobs have nipples on them. Most boobs on people my age are at least a bit saggy. 

No bra, no cleavage, no problem.
Who cares?

We’re trained to think boobs have to look a certain way.  High up.  Close together with cleavage if they’re large.  Relatively immobile. That’s not how boobs are though.  Not aging boobs anyway.  Part of this is the cult of youth.  Part of it is the prevalence of cosmetically altered boobs.  Part of it is just plain misogyny. 

My sister has compared the requirement of a bra to the previous requirement that women wear corsets.  A certain body shape was just expected, and to refuse to conform to that shape was seen as either slovenly or promiscuous.

While we no longer wear corsets (except for fun!!), we still expect breasts to be forced into a certain shape in order to be seen as properly dressed and acceptable.

So I’m experimenting with not doing that. 

Not a bra in sight.

It’s easy for me, because I’m a stay-at-home mom, so I don’t have a job to jeopardize.  But isn’t it ludicrous that it might actually jeopardize a job if I didn’t wear a certain undergarment to force my body into a specific shape?  I mean, what?  What century are we in?

I’ve also been experimenting with less constricting bikini tops.  I bought two more “string bikini” type tops this year that allow my shape to be more naturally conveyed.  One has slightly more support than the other.

My weird body
The one with more support has gotten a lot more love, even in body positive communities.  I’m told it’s more “flattering,” which is code for it makes my body look closer to some imaginary young, thin ideal.  The “less flattering” top makes my body look more like what my body actually looks like.  Just me, covered in fabric.  I have been told that that top looks “weird.”

Well, maybe I do look weird.  Women wear bras.  Especially large breasted women.  So yes, my natural body shape is not what we’re used to seeing.  It actually is weird, as in unusual to see.  But it’s my natural body shape.  And I suspect it’s not that different from what plenty of women see when they take off their bras at the end of the day. 

So I’m going to just keep going about in the world with my natural body shape until it seems less weird.  I’m happy.  I’m comfortable.  My mental health is improved.  And my boobs are a little bit bouncy and closer to the ground.  I’m good with it.

Monday, October 3, 2016

The trap of the healthy fat chick

When a plus size woman dares to love herself unapologetically on social media, a few things often happen.  One, lots of people are happy.  Yay! Because if we can love ourselves, maybe they can too.  Or because they already do and are happy that someone else does too.  Or because their plus size sexual partner is beautiful to them and they want her to see the beauty they see.  Or a million other personal reasons.  Yay for happiness and body love. 

Two, some people are dicks.  How dare this woman feel good about herself when she is aesthetically disgusting to them?  So they compare her to animals, threaten physical violence, or otherwise behave like the worst kind of human, because for some reason or other, her self love is threatening to them.  Or they’re bored or something.

So that’s kind of the best and the worst.  But there’s a third thing.  A sneaky thing. 

The concern troll.

“I’m so glad you feel good about yourself, but that size can’t be healthy.” “Promoting an unhealthy lifestyle.” “Glorifying obesity.”

Thankfully, I have been largely spared the aggressive and violent comments online, but I’ve been concern trolled aplenty.

And I haven’t been responding to that properly.

I have used language in my body love blog posts reassuring the trolls in advance that my fat body is healthy.  I have pointed out that I exercise and eat well.  I’m healthy, y’all. Fat and healthy.  Dont worry,  I'm one of the good fatties.  No need for your concern trolling here…

Except.  What a bunch of insidious ableist bullshit that was. 

I love my body and I’m worthy of love and I’m beautiful.  Full fucking stop.  Period.  Healthy or not.  Exercising or not.  Eating kale chips or potato chips. Diabetic or not.  In shape or not.  This is my body and I love it and I’m allowed to love it and celebrate it!  I’m allowed to take up the space I take up.  My health is between me, my doctor, and the people who love me.  No one else.

The trap of allowing and responding to the concern troll is that it says that I am only worthy of loving myself if certain conditions are met.  What a load of crap. 

Some things have happened recently that forced me to look at just how much I have allowed the concern trolls’ voices inside my head.

For the first time in my life, at age 42, I have a medical condition that could be partly due to my weight.

It also might not be.

I have hypertension.  I’m managing it with my doctor in the ways that we have decided together, and my health is fine.  But when it happened, when those numbers crept up, and I could no longer explain them away as “white coat hypertension,” I found myself on unstable ground. 

Shit, I thought.  They were right.  It was just a matter of time until my “unhealthy,” “obesity glorifying” lifestyle caught up with me. 

I felt ashamed because of some numbers on a blood pressure machine. 

Together, my doctor and I decided that before medicating, we would try weight loss, increased exercise, and reducing salt intake.  For months, I obsessively tracked every morsel of food to go in my mouth.  I exercised.  I reduced salt.  I lost ten pounds.  My blood pressure continued to increase.

I broke the Pam.
During that time, I had a nasty fall.  I slipped on some mud while walking in the woods with my kids, sprained a ligament in my knee and tore a ligament in my ankle. I hopped around on crutches, scooted around the house on a rolling office chair, leaned heavily on my husband for help, and eventually got to the point where I could walk with a limp.

I couldn’t stand or walk for long, and couldn’t do stairs.  Grocery shopping was enough to make my leg ache badly for hours.  I considered using one of those motorized shopping cart scooter thingies at the grocery store. 

But, I couldn’t ride one of those.  People would think I was just fat and lazy.  Every time I sat down when others were standing, every elevator ride, I heard the voice in my head, “fat and lazy.”  I felt lumbering. Like a fat caricature.  I considered wearing a knee and ankle brace, not because I needed them, but because they would signal to people that I was injured, not just fat and lazy.

Because if I’m fat and just feel like sitting down or taking the elevator, what?  I’m not worthy of the air I breathe?  The space I take up?  Can I be fat and (temporarily, in this case) not able bodied and have a medical condition and still be beautiful and love myself?

Uh.  Of course I can.

But for a minute, I didn’t know that. 

I had trapped myself in the story of a beautiful fat chick who was the exact size she was supposed to be, as evidenced by good health and an able body.

Pam, check your privilege. 

I’m plus sized.  I’m fat.  I’m fucking fabulous.  Sometimes I’m super duper lazy.  Sometimes I’m active.  Mostly I’m healthy.  In some ways, I’m not healthy.  My body is aging.  Some of that I’m embracing.  Some of it kind of sucks balls.  Exercise waxes and wanes with my mood and other factors.  I like salads.  And cheetos.  And bourbon.  And lentils.  And cake.  And dancing.  And sleeping late. Sometimes I wear fabulous clothes that make me look like a pin-up hourglass.  Sometimes I wear yoga pants and a tank top with no bra. 

And I’m beautiful and worthy.  I love myself and I love my body.  Full stop.  No conditions on that love.

Unconditional.  Just like my love for others.  I’ve finally learned to give that to myself.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

The fine art of being bad at stuff

Let me start with a little story.  As a baby, my mom thought that maybe I was deaf, because I never babbled.  These days, we would have that kid tested and getting services so fast their head would spin, but this was the 70’s, era of kids bouncing free in the back of station wagons with no seatbelts.  It was a more chill time. 

Spoiler: I wasn’t deaf.  Eventually I talked, but only once I could say real words. No baby babble for me.  My first word was a perfectly identifiable, “meow” while my mom was reading the Three Little Kittens.

My little personality was already in there.  My tiny little baby perfectionist personality.

I hate being bad at stuff.

Here’s the thing though.  In order to get good at most stuff, you have to be bad at stuff first.  And you work on it, and practice, and get incrementally better at that thing until you no longer suck.  That’s how life works.  I would totally teach my kids that.

Except… I don’t do that myself.  I hide my badness at stuff.  I practice in secret until I can get all A’s.  Or, in most cases, I just choose stuff to do that comes easily to me.  I know how to learn and study, sort of, in theory. But I never really had to do it much.  Matrix algebra, a requirement for my statistics masters, was difficult for me. I cried, because I sucked at it, and I didn’t know how to get good at it. Through the magic of grade inflation, I still got an A, but I never really learned how to learn. 

I have a PhD and two Masters degrees, and I don’t know how to learn.  That’s not to say I didn’t learn things in school.  I did.  The most important thing I learned in graduate school was how to speak in public without vomiting.  I learned confidence in my intellect, how to speak up in a room full of incredibly intelligent people without questioning whether or not what I had to say was worthy.  I learned research design and analysis skills, how to develop and teach a course, how to write a grant.  I learned how to work on a team and how to manage people working for me.  I learned an enormous amount. 

But not in the buckle down, practice, be bad at stuff and then get better at it kind of way.

So here I am, at the ripe old age of 42, learning how to be bad at something. Specifically, I am learning to play the piano.  I am happy to tell you all that I completely suck at it.

I took lessons as a kid, but as soon as I couldn’t get a skill easily, I dropped it.  I played other instruments, and I guess I sucked.  I mean, at some points, I certainly sucked, but I didn’t really know I sucked.  The pieces we played in band were easy.  I didn’t have to practice that much to feel competent.  It might not surprise you at this point to know that when I auditioned for things, I hit the sight reading out of the park.  Consistently super high scores on playing stuff that required no preparation.  Abysmal scores on scales.  Because who wants to practice scales?  Not this girl.

But we have this beautiful piano that we got for free from a good friend.  And neither of my kids chose piano as their instrument.  And every time a friend or my brother would come over and play it, I would be so happy the piano was getting some love.  It almost made me cry.  My kids play around on it, and I taught them to read music on it, and how to find the notes of songs they know, but no one was playing it beautifully, and it made me sad.

At the same time, I found myself envying my kids their music lessons.  My fingers itched to try the violin or bass.  I wanted to be learning an instrument too.

So I decided to take up piano.  And boy, do I suck.

At the same time, I’m super proud of myself for sucking and continuing to practice.  I am progressing.  I can play stuff now I couldn’t play a week ago and couldn’t have dreamed of playing a month ago. 

My parents were here last week and I played one of the songs I’m working on for my mom.  It felt really weird.  When eight-year-olds play the instruments they’re learning and struggle with it or hit a wrong note, we expect that and we cheer for their progress.  It feels different as an adult.

Forty-two year olds are supposed to be good at stuff.  Forty-two year old piano players should not suck. 

Unless they’re beginners. 

My friends who teach music have said that adult beginners are the worst, because they expect to get good right away, and I can completely see it.  I’m embarrassed by how terrible I am at playing a simple melody on one hand and simple chords on the other.  I’m embarrassed every time it doesn’t sound like music. 

But I’m also incredibly proud of myself.  Proud of my progress, and the fact that I am practicing every day, and that I’m learning, finally, how to be bad at something and get incrementally better. 

That’s how you get good at things.  And I’m showing that to my kids too.  They see me sucking.  They see me practicing.  They see me getting better.

It’s not adorable when I’m bad at things the way it is when kids are learning.  But… in a weird way… I’m finding it kind of beautiful.  A new journey for me when I wasn’t expecting one.  A skill I thought was a bucket list fantasy that would never happen.  But it is happening. 


Suuuuper effing slowly. 

And it’s not cute at all.

But it’s awesome.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

On selfies

I’ve thought about writing this piece for a long time, but I’ve always gotten weird and shy about it. Until now.

Let’s talk about selfies.

If you’re my personal friend on facebook, you may have noticed that I post a lot of selfies.  I don’t post them every day or even every week, but I take and post them when my hair or makeup is looking cute, when I’m bored, when the lighting is interesting, or just when I damn feel like it.

Maybe that should be the end of the blog.  I take selfies because I damn feel like it. The end.

But see…. I get some shit about my selfies.  Some of it good-natured ribbing from friends, some of it odd comments from people I have never met (usually friends of friends who friend-requested me on facebook), some of it link after link to that fake article about how taking selfies is a new mental illness in the DSM.  (It’s not.  It’s fake, people. Please stop posting it on my wall. Snopes is a thing.  Use the snopes.)

When I thought about writing this piece, I got this weird feeling.  Like, maybe it IS terrible that I take selfies.  Maybe it’s vain and stupid and, like one high school friend posted, something that lonely people do because they don’t have any friends to take pictures of them.

Uh, my sister is a professional photographer.  I don’t lack for photos of me.  I don’t lack for friends either.  I have some of the best friends on the planet and I feel very lucky to have them. 

But I take selfies anyway.  And it’s not just because I feel like it. 

See, when people give me shit about my selfies, I don’t laugh it off.  I might pretend to, but it actually feels intensely personal when people judge my selfie-taking.  Because for me, selfies aren’t about vanity or seeking validation or wanting “likes.”  They’re more like therapy.  Self-image therapy. And it feels pretty shitty to be judged for taking care of myself.

I take selfies because I want to continue on a self-love and self-acceptance journey. I’m a middle-aged, overweight woman.  I have wrinkles, age spots, places where my skin sags, places where my fat bulges or rolls.  I’m beautiful, and sexy as fuck, but I also live in the world. 

As women, particularly older and fatter women, we get so many images and messages regarding how we’re supposed to be.  So many people telling us we’re wrong somehow and trying to sell us stuff that will fix us.  I hold the line against them as well as I can, and I love myself just as I am.  But it isn’t like I have magically accomplished self-love and I’m just done now.  Nope.  It’s not like that at all.

I still have days when I pull the sides of my face up in the mirror and imagine a facelift.  When I imagine my post-baby belly going under the knife to get repaired.  I have days when I try on everything in my closet and cry. I have days when I doubt my self worth because of the way that I look.

Pushing against that negativity, I have a set of tools that I use.  I have supportive groups of women online who can help me through the darker moments.  I have people in my life who love me.  I have meditation. I have my kids, who recalibrate my scale regarding what matters.

And I also have selfies.

Muddy gardening selfie. Still beautiful!
Selfies, for when I’m feeling pretty, and also sometimes when I’m not.  To capture fancy Pam in makeup with her hair done, but also to love and accept no-makeup Pam on a random Tuesday.  To put my image out there, to celebrate the way I look.  To find beauty in a face that society doesn’t think is beautiful.  To find it even in my most mundane moments. 

It’s not the only tool in my toolbox, but it’s one of them. 

I didn’t just wake up one day full of self-love strutting down beaches in bikinis.  It’s a journey.  And selfies are one of the things that help me on that journey. 

Maybe it seems vain and shallow and narcissistic.  I acknowledge that it’s about seeing beauty in myself.  And I agree that beauty isn’t the be-all end-all of what I (and women) should aspire to.  I aspire to things much more important than beauty. 


As a middle-aged fat woman with a big nose and a “character” face, it’s very easy to feel disenfranchised from beauty.  Part of cultivating self-love for me is reclaiming my sense of beauty and seeing myself the way I see others.  Learning to see the beauty that has nothing to do with the way I look at all.  Seeing that the imperfect parts are the very best parts.  I see that in others.  But it takes practice to see that in myself.

It’s personal.  My selfies are personal.  But it’s also part of my journey to let myself be seen.  It always has been.

So here.  See me.  See my journey.  See the makeup days and the raw naked-faced days.  This is me. You don't have to love me. I love me.

Reason to take a selfie:
Excellent hair day and polka dot sunglasses.
Reason to take a selfie:
80's night, Camp Throwback, and the sheer magnificence of my sister's face in this pic!
Reason to take a selfie:
Nose tampons.
Reason to take a selfie:
My kid asked me to.

Reason to take a selfie:
New tattoo!!!
Reason to take a selfie:
Post-pin-up hair

Reason to take a selfie:
A friend tried to keep up with me, which no one should ever do,
so then I had to party all alone because I broke her.
Reason to take a selfie:
Gay marriage is legal!  So I did rainbow eye makeup and it looked awesome!
Reason to take a selfie:
I made this sweet dragon hat for my kid but he wouldn't model it.
Reason to take a selfie:
Beach hair!!
Reason to take a selfie:
Really trying to learn to love my nose.
Reason to take a selfie:
This amazing shirt.
Reason to take a selfie:
Shameless drunk eating of cold leftover ramen at 2am.
Reason to take a selfie:
New tattoo and new lipstick and who the fuck do I think I am??
Reason to take a selfie:
Cheersing my online friends!
Reason to take a selfie:
Because I love these small people so much.
Reason to take a selfie:
Accidental good hair day from a sweaty topknot.
Reason to take a selfie:
Because I damn felt like it.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Musings on midlife crisis

I’m 41.  I have blue and purple hair.  I recently got a visible tattoo.  And I’m thisssss close to pulling the trigger on a nose ring. 

The only reason I haven’t gotten a nose ring yet is that a few people have suggested I might be too old, and it would be trying too hard, or seem… I don’t know… like I’m trying to hang on to my youth or something. 

In my head (or in their heads filtered through my head—thanks social anxiety, you douchebag), my nose ring is basically an earring or ponytail on an older man in a ridiculous sports car.  I don’t want to be ridiculous. I don’t want to be some midlife crisis cliché. 


I do.

For the first time, I’m like… OH!  I get it!  The middle aged guy gets an earring and a sports car because he has always wanted them!  It’s not a crisis.  It’s just… he can now, so he does. 

At least for me, getting a nose ring has absolutely zero to do with hanging on to my youth.  Eye cream and my dermatologist, yes.  Those things are about hanging on to my youth.  But my hair, my tattoos, my fashion, and my eventual nose ring are about embracing the age I am now.  Embracing the ME I am now. 

I don’t have to please anyone but myself.  I have wanted a nose ring forever.  And I’m a damn grown up, mostly, and I can.  I just… can. 

When I was younger, I was completely paralyzed by social anxiety.  I worried about what everyone would think about my hair, my fashion, my appearance in general.  I couldn’t get a nose ring because who did I think I was?  I’ve talked about this before, the leftover gunk from high school, the voice in my head that tells me I will never be cool enough.  Never be pretty enough.  The voice that tells me that blue hair and fun clothes and body mods are for cool people, and I’m not one of them so I can’t have that.

Seriously?  What a crock of shit. 

Is it a midlife crisis?  I don’t think so.  I think it’s the opposite. 

I think it’s a midlife release of fucks.  I no longer give as many fucks. 

I still give one every once in a while, like the day I put on my “Gorgeous 10” shirt and then second guessed whether strangers would think I think I’m gorgeous and think bad things about me, so then I took it off.  Like the day I wore my favorite comic skirt and I put a crinoline under it, but then I took off the crinoline, because this is suburban Maryland and any pin-up type fashion out here is weird enough without adding a crinoline.  Even though it looked soooo cute that way. 

Visible tattoo AND modcloth dress! No makeup.  No fucks.
But those days were noteworthy because that’s not every day. 

Most days, I wear my weird hair and my modcloth dresses when everyone else is in jeans with smooth highlighted hair and I’m happy.  I’m me and I’m happy and I give no fucks. 

I don’t think that’s a crisis.  I think that’s… awesome.  Does getting older mean I can just do whatever I want?  I think it kind of does.  I don’t want a shiny car.  I want a nose ring.  And if people think that’s weird, I don’t have to care! 

I recently wore one of my bikinis in front of a mom from my kids’ school, and for the first time, I didn’t justify it.  I may have talked to her before about the blog, but I couldn’t remember whether I had. I don’t know if she knows I’m a body activist.  She might.  She might not.  I just wore my bikini. 

No fucks given.

If that’s a midlife crisis, I’ll take it.  Bring it on.  I’ll ride this wave until I become one of those old ladies with giant colorful glasses and 4,000 bracelets who look a little crazy but also amazing. 

It makes me excited about the future to think that way.  It’s not a crisis.  It’s a relief.  It’s joy and celebration. 

Bring on the second act.

And the nose ring.

Me with my fake nose ring!  Real one coming soon!