a new shield
My work feels stressful, but not entirely out of control. I am doing more work than I have ever done, and in some ways I wasn't prepared for it, so the stress shakes my foundation. Home is content and strong, as always, which I appreciate. A fair number of the feelings I've been having are body-centric, which is WEIRD. I'm a strong believer in HAES and body-acceptance, things that I not only preach but believe wholeheartedly about and for myself. Despite outside efforts to divert me from it, I have been confident and strong in my appearance and body for a long time, but not so much recently. I'm questioning my health, my fashion (or lack thereof) choices, my "prettiness", my craft projects, and even posting here. As weird as it may seem, I know something's up if I'm not blogging or journaling in some way, because it's something I've been committed to for seven years.
While I do the work to figure all of this out, I decided to arm myself with something tangible that I could grab onto in those moments when I wasn't being nice to myself. This necklace from Yellow Owl Workshop is called Earth/Fire. Aside from the astrological significance, which is trivial at best, I feel like these two elements define the person I believe myself to be. I am grounded and strong, of the Earth, confident, consistent and steady. And I am also brave, proud, someone who embraces and fights through challenges, and someone who has a tangible energy/spark. At those times when I forget who I am, or fail to see myself the way I should, I will hold onto this. Em wears a St. Gabriel pendant for similar (yet different!) reasons, and I hope it has the same enduring effect.
On top of donning my shield, I have decided to take a break from wedding blogs. There is a part of me who will always reject the heteronormative conventions involved with marriage, but there is an incredibly toxic competitive component involved in weddings that I detest. I said to Angela the other day, "I have said in my head while reading wedding blogs (on NUMEROUS occasions) - 'how does she look so perfect?' I DON'T SAY THIS SHIT." I really don't. But it's hard to disassociate from the air-brushing, the primping and preening, the massive expense that disguised as "pretty elements of design", and the dishonesty inherent in a lot of the reporting. As a result of all of this, I need to pull myself away and follow my heart again. I have a strong sense of self and aesthetic. It has been impossible to tap into that over the past eight weeks because of all of these outside influences. I can't even stick with wedding craft projects with any consistency because I doubt myself.
What do you do to refocus and find yourself again, whether you are simply hiding or lost completely? Do you ever have moments when you forget to love yourself? What did you do to get back on the right path? It's simultaneously daunting and exciting to be back working on this again. No matter how old I get, I'm always growing.
Oh, and I'm convinced that vitamin B12 is magic.