MEET: SELF-LOVE ADVOCATE GEEK-BETTY
AGE, OCCUPATION, ETC
Hi! I’m the woman behind the blog, occasional model of vintage items (when I can’t talk someone else into modeling for me haha), lover of all things vintage and vintage inspired, and messy life guru.
This is me:
FAVORITE VINTAGE STYLE
I love the 40’s and 50’s for their feminine silhouettes and patterns. Dresses from the 30’s have really unique patterns, as women had to improvise and make clothing out of material they may not have used prior to the Great Depression.
FIRST STYLE ICON
I was in high school in the ’90’s so the first fashion icon that I can remember was Gwen Stefani of No Doubt and Drew Barrymore.
I wasn’t ever as “showy” with my body as Gwen Stefani was – no belly shirts or anything like that. Even back then, I bought almost my entire wardrobe from thrift shops. I worked at Montgomery Ward (when it was still a thing :/) and was required to wear “career casual” clothing, so I was a big fan of black and white. I could easily throw on sweaters, button downs, and trousers as long as they were in monochrome colors. I also had every haircolor imaginable when I was younger.
I loved Drew Barrymore times a thousand back then. She had such a fun, free spirited fashion sense, mixed with a bad girl “fuck ya”feel that I highly identified with.
I bleached my hair to death trying to get her hair. It was never quite “Drew” standards, but I didn’t care. I have always had my own sense of style. It didn’t matter what was popular or fashionable. I never could afford name brand items (or when I could afford it, I didn’t see the point in spending that much for a logo). I thrifted, mixed, matched, and wore whatever I felt like. I didn’t care what other people thought of me …. okay, so I still don’t worry overly much about others’ opinions haha.
Me, in high school, the first time I ever cared about clothing:
As you can see, I wasn’t exactly stylish! And look at my poor bleached hair. Oy vay. I can’t advocate enough for people to wear what they like and love and to wear it with panache!
In life? Sally Ride, Jane Goodall, Margaret Mead, and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Style? Haley Atwell as Agent Carter from the Captain America movies. This is a pretty great post about Agent Carter’s style.
DESCRIBE MY PERSONAL STYLE
I’d say my personal style is pretty eclectic. I do love vintage clothing, and I adore dresses. There’s a secret to why I wear so many dresses, though – I’m lazy! Seriously. With a dress, you don’t have to match anything. Just throw it on and viola! instant outfit. As I get older, I find myself wearing simple clothing on a daily basis: jeans, tees, cardigans, etc. I still try to infuse my own personal sense of style into my everyday wear. I love patterns and bright colors. Wait, and dark colors. And neutrals. Okay, I love it all.
SOMETHING I LOVE ABOUT MYSELF
I’m strong. Not physically. I can’t even open a pickle jar. I’m more of the survive a ton of crap and come out mostly unscathed type of strong.
MY SELF-LOVE MOMENT
Okay, so here’s where I’m going to get a little serious. Maybe too serious for some of you. I promised myself to keep this blog a little lighter and less personal than my previous blogs, but forgive me this one time.
When I was younger, I didn’t love myself. I didn’t LIKE myself. I didn’t value who I was and what I had to offer. I had spent my entire life believing that I didn’t deserve love. As a result, I surrounded myself with people that also didn’t value or love me. I had a ….rough…childhood. I struggled with interpersonal relationships through my teens and twenties. I never looked in the mirror and liked what I saw. I never thought I was worthy of a good job, a nice house, etc. This type of self-loathing poisoned my every interaction.
When I was thirty years old, I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. It was the first time I’d seen the doctor in years; I’d only made the appointment because I’d made a New Year’s Resolution to take better care of myself. At first, I didn’t believe them. I mean, when they called to tell me at work, I said “whhhhhaaaaaatttt?????” and hung up. AND DIDN’T CALL THEM BACK. Seriously, they had to call me twenty minutes later, confused. I was in total disbelief.
I spent the next year undergoing radiation therapy, chemotherapy, surgery, and countless doctor’s visits. I was angry the entire time and felt sorry for myself. “It isn’t fair,” I bemoaned, “why me?!” Even then, in the middle of life-saving treatment, I didn’t love myself and my body enough to take proper care of myself. I ate McDonalds every day (sometimes two times a day). I didn’t get enough sleep. I stayed out late drinking every night. I didn’t take the medication that was prescribed, I didn’t trust anyone to help me and carried all of the stress myself. I was a big ole mess.
Fast forward to the end of chemo. The doctor gave me good news. I went home and went straight to bed after work. I couldn’t sleep so I just laid there and worried. After a few hours of this, the worries sort of tapered into silence and I found myself listening to my body. Really listening to it. Maybe for the first time in my entire life. Feeling air as it lifted my lungs, imagining that I could feel blood flow through my veins, hairs were presences on my body that I could count and name, every wrinkle suddenly shouted it’s origin story – “remember how much you laughed when you hung out with so and so? These crow’s feet by your left eye are an ode to that gal” and “you worry so much, that’s why I’m here in between your brows, a constant indentation where your scowl lives”. I don’t know why it hit me at that moment, this awareness of my self and my body, but it hit me like a truck. Mowed me down. Crushed me. I realized that I liked many things about myself that I had never taken the time to think about before.
I didn’t hate my body – it was a machine that would carry me through this life. It was the ONLY thing that would carry me through this life. How COULD I hate it? It was doing it’s job. It needed my love and my help. It was the only body I would ever have. I was the ONLY ME that I would ever have. How could I hate myself? I COULD CHANGE the things that I genuinely didn’t like about myself and make a better “me”.
I know, I know, it sounds cliche and overly dramatic. Hey, what can I say? I’m a cliche and overly dramatic type of gal.
Anyway, I didn’t just wake up the next day and love myself. It took years of work, therapy (eek), loads of self-help books and articles, and constant reminders to myself to be nice, be good, be gentle, and never stop evolving. I don’t ever think that someone is “better” than me anymore. I no longer question my worth. I recognize that I’m really great at some things and preeeettttty terrible at other things. I may not be the hottest girl in any room, yet I’m not the ugliest either. I’ve made a few mistakes, but I’ve also knocked it out of the ballpark more than once! I LIKE myself finally and it feels wonderful.
MY ONE SPLURGE FOR MYSELF
Skin care products!
ONE WAY THAT I WORK TO IMPROVE MYSELF
I’m a work-in-progress. Every day is one step forward, sometimes two steps back, three steps forward again. I read quite a few books about self-improvement, self-love, and self-care. If I feel ignorant about a subject, I make it a point to go learn about it. I am very aware of my faults and my flaws and I am never satisfied with them. I don’t excuse my behavior by blaming my past. I attempt to fix it.
HOW I PRACTICE DAILY SELF-CARE
I take the looooongest showers imaginable. It’s my time to think and feel and from time to time cry. It’s “me” time every day.
HOW I HELP OTHER WOMEN TO EMBRACE THEIR OWN SELF-LOVE
I’m hoping to help with self-care and self-love tips, articles, blog posts, and interviews with badass women that I know. I can’t wait to share some of the interviews with all of you!