Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Do these earrings make me look fat?!

We all know I am not afraid of being real on this blog.  If you didn't know, go here, here or even here.   Today may be the most real I have been in awhile or really ever. Will I regret this later? Maybe.  Do I think the Lord is pushing me to write this.  Yep.

Hi, my name is Rachel Lynn Brown and I am a size 14 and happy.  Not lying.  Not in denial.  I am happy with myself and feel blessed with this curvier body the Lord gave me.  Wish I would lose some lbs?  You betcha!  Does my life revolve around that fact? Absolutely not!  How did I get to this point of peace inside ME?...let's talk.

I have struggled with my weight since I had Claire.  I would go up and down with each pregnancy.  I would lose weight and then gain it right back.  I have always come back to this size right now.   I have been depressed about my weight in years before.  I have been completely obsessed with dieting and working out in years past.  It was a never ending cycle that was absolutely tiring.  It has taken over my life before.  The insecurity in my physical appearance was a demon and really a false idol in my life.  About 6 months ago, I decided I was going to make some changes.  The decision was not to make changes to my physical appearance, but to change me on the inside and fight this demon.  I am a strong mother of three children, a wife to an incredible man and a servant to loving Lord, I was NOT going to let this ridiculous insecurity get in the way of what was most important to me.

So many of us feel this way and struggle inside.  Insecurities are the evil one making us non believers.  Have you read the Beth Moore book  "So Long Insecurity, You Were a Bad Friend to Us"?  This book alone started the "Inner Beauty Revolution" inside me :).  If you have not read it, you should.  When we feel insecure in ourselves, we are not trusting God with what He gave us.  Think about it.  He made us who and what we are.  We do make our own decisions along the way, but He made us beautiful in our own ways and in His eyes.  Who are we to question that or allow it hurt us?

So back to me. I had to ask myself a very important question:

"Why do I want to lose weight?"

I asked myself this question and realized that was my problem.  I was not losing weight for myself. It was for everyone else.  I was losing weight so others would see me as a skinny girl and think better of me.  Hopefully they would think I was prettier and I would fit in with the skinny girls.

ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME??!!!  This really pissed me off. 

I HATE insecurities.  I HATE when we get so wrapped up in what others think of us and I was doing that very thing.   Why is okay to be so vain???? I knew right then, the boat had to stop and I had to do some work on ME.

Since that revealing moment, I have never been happier.  I started really praying specifically about this situation and asked the Lord to open my eyes to what HE sees is beautiful in me and change me to see the same things.  As well, remove these insecurities and give me strength to be a better example to other women.  I am BIG believer that any person can start a revolution when they allow God to lead.  He does not want us to be vain and wrapped up in ourselves, but in Him.  He will then show us our beauty.  Do I still watch what I eat?  ABSOLUTELY.  Do I work out regularly?  YES!  Does my life revolve around these two things? NO, and NEVER AGAIN, will allow them to.

So why am I writing this?  I want everyone else that worries about their weight and physical appearance to feel this same way.  Do I still have bad days? Yes.  Do I sometimes try things on and want to throw a fit because I can't wear it?  Yes.  These are the days I pray harder and...wear more jewelry :).  You have to make serious changes in how you look at yourself in the mirror.  PRAY that you feel better.  PRAY for your insecurities to go away.  PRAY that your eyes are opened up to how beautiful you really are. 

The Lord will help you. Trust me.  You just have to ask.

Now, I also have some helpful hints and tips to in how I dress and make myself feel better.  I get comments and emails asking where I shop and about my style (thanks yall, you can can make my chubby cheeks blush :))  So, here is this curvy girl's tips to looking fabulous ;)...

1. WEAR YOUR SIZE!  Geez Louise yall.  This one is huge!!  I know my size.  I can order a 14 online and 9 times out of 10 it fits.  I know that is comfortable and flattering for me.  If I really wanted to, I could squeeze into a 10.  I look like a size 20 when I squeeze into a 10.   The only reason I would do that would be to say or know that I am in a 10.  Ridiculous!  Size is just a number.  When you wear the right size, you look thinner.  Not only that, you will be more comfortable and not feel fat. 

2.  KNOW WHAT LOOKS GOOD ON YOU!  I know what styles look best on me.  My stomach is my trouble area (thank you Bree Leighton and that lovely C-section :)).  I don't wear anything that is tight on my tummy.  When I find something that I like how it fits, I buy almost every color :).  Try things on, play with your shape.  I think everyone would be surprised to know what really looks best on them.  I am lucky enough to have my own personal stylist, Tara...errrrrrr ok sister :), that challenges me all the time to try new things.  She is usually right and I have to credit her to almost all my dresses and looking good for events.

3. ACCESSORIZE!! I am the queen of accessories.  I have more necklaces than one woman should.  I wear many accessories every day.  I love my big rings and earrings, scarves, belts, and flowers.  I don't do alot of bracelets because Bree is always taking them off me and I never see them again, but I do love them.  Here is my go to outfit (everyday for work or on the weekends): solid long or short dress, necklaces (usually a couple layered), big hoop earrings, and a big ring.  I know this looks good on me and I feel beautiful in these things. If you see a pretty necklace, get it! I buy cheap and expensive jewelry. I buy more things on sale than not.  If I see a necklace that I know will make any outfit, there is no stopping me :).  I buy F21 big hoop earrings probably more than I buy bread :). 

4. ALL ABOUT THE BAG AND SHOES!  In addition to my jewelry, I always have a good bag and shoes.  I may have on a $16 maxi dress from Walmart, but I am carrying a Louis Vuitton bag (for the record - that was a VERY gracious gift from my father and yes, I am spoiled rotten).  I LOVE expensive bags.  That is my weakness.  I have every one I have ever bought (or received :)) and I collect them like art :).  A good bag can make you walk with an extra spring in your step. It does not have to be an expensive one, just one you LOVE.  Take the time and pick a good one out for you.  Trust me, if you have a bag you are proud of, when you are out shopping for pretty necklaces, you will have more fun.  Just saying, it's a fact :).  Shoes are sooooooo important.  I have MANY shoes too...but almost every pair is comfortable.  I am mother to three, I do NOT have time to be limping around in some stupid pair of uncomfortable shoes.  When I am wearing my "uniform" I referenced earlier, I try to always wear a fun pair of shoes to complete the outfit.  I also, only buy shoes on sale.  There is ALWAYS a shoe sale. 

5.  SMILE!  I learned this from Shane.  When I am trying things on and ask his opinion, he always says "Smile, and it will look good" :).  When you have found your style, you will feel better and you will smile more.  There is nothing more beautiful than a confident, smiling woman.  When I am in a situation where I am feeling insecure and feel myself sinking in, I have a specific challenge. I challenge myself to get up, get in the middle of whatever conversation and SMILE.  It works like a charm every single time.  Trust me, when you are smiling and enjoying conversation, NO ONE is looking at your arm fat.

My favorite places to shop are New York and Company, TJ Maxx, Dillards, and Riff Raff (local store here, go like them on fb and you can shop from there, GENIUS! ).  Now I ALWAYS peruse Walmart and Target when I am doing other shopping to make sure they don't have any good staples I need.  I buy jewelry everywhere. If I see it, I buy it.

These things work for me.  I do have to say, my best accessories are my hot husband and three darling kiddos :).  I owe it to them to feel beautiful and confident.  I have two little girls that listen to my every word.  I want them to know always that they are beautiful just the way God made them!  I believe it all starts with a strong mother in their life telling them everyday and feeling the same way herself.  This is not being vain, this is being beautiful on the inside and it shining on the outside!

Now, I would love to lose weight and hopefully I will.  Diabetes runs rapid in my family and I have to watch my health.  But I am going to do this the right way and live a lifestyle that will enable me to lose weight slowly and the healthy way.  IT IS NOT GOING TO RULE MY LIFE!

Yall are beautiful women, round, thin, short, tall and everything in between.  Be proud of who you are and smile!! The Lord is smiling when He sees you, smile back!!

Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. Proverbs 31:30


27 comments:

Aly @ Analyze This said...

Hey! I am new here!! Tara tweeted this blog post! Love it, girl! I am in the midst of reading So Long Insecurities ... AGAIN! I have always fluctuated with my weight. And unfortunately, I can't get past the whole "doing this for others" because in hindsight I am. I'm losing weight for others - ie, my future kids. For my family. Etc. But mainly for me. I love, love, love this post! Very near and dear to my heart!!!! Thanks for being so real!

Tess Labeth said...

Rachel, I love this. I think you're beautiful and blessed beyond measure with what your life has brought you. Not only your 3 precious children but I also have 2 sisters and a very vibrant mama who make my life extra special... I clearly see yours does too. Very sweet! More power to ya!!!

Take care! Hope to see you soon for I have something pretty special up my sleeve I think you and your family might love... stay tuned. ;)

Mandy said...

You are probably going to kick me in the face for saying this but I struggle with the exact opposite. I am way way way too skinny. I know I know, you probably think I am crazy but it is super frustrating. People always look at me like I am starving my self, I'm not. Just naturally thin but it DOES NOT look like a healthy thin...I actaully wear lots of layers to make myself look bigger than I actually am and the thing that sucks the most is buying clothes. All my pants are too big and nothing fits right. Almost everything get altered. I guess we struggle with the same insecurities and I totally feel where you are coming from with this post.

Thank you for posting this and I am off to purchase this book. I think I need to read it.

Madison said...

Kudos to your for sharing what's real. You are beautiful.

Kari Beth said...

great post rachel! so honest and so true. insecurities can rule your life if you let them. and we all have them. we are not human if we don't.

Aimee said...

I've read your blog for a while but never commented. Just wanted to say I love this post!

Amanda said...

Hey there! I am a newbie here too! Just wanted to let you know that your words and advice touch my heart! Thank you for putting a smile on my face today!

Nik said...

Thank you for writing your very personal post today. I think it is so important for women to accept who they are - no matter the size or shape. I love your tips too! Thanks for allowing us all into your life. I am confident you will do well and continue being your beautiful self. You are an inspiration to all women.

Ashley said...

This is my first time to comment here, but I always read your blog!! My husband is currently deployed and I have been trying to loose weight. I have lost 20lbs and have about 15 more to go. After 20, my weight would start yo-yoing. I would get so frustrated that I would start eating not so healthy again. I currently started nutrisystem and I am in a cranky mood. I needed to read this post today. As much as I loose weight, I am doing it more for everyone else. I want to look good for my husband who has lost lots of weight during his deployment. I have someone close to me who makes comments about my weight and it makes me feel down. I don't want my daughter to think I am fat, but I don't want her to become obsessed with weight either. She is already very aware at the age of 8 that I am always on a diet and trying to loose weight. All of this gets me so down!! Which causes stress and we all know that stress causes weight gain. UGH! What a vicious cycle!! Thank you for posting this today! Now I want to go out and buy a pretty dress and lots and lots of jewelry!! :)

Jac said...

Rachel, much much credit to you for talking about such a sensitive subject. You are brave! Thank you for being a model for me to aspire to.

Brandi said...

what a great post!! I am always watching my weight and it bites big time!!!! You spoke to me!!! THANKS!!!!! I think u look fabulous by the way!!!!

Kimberley said...

great post! as long as your comfortable that's all that matters. i hope to get there some day ;)

p.s. we're having family pictures made this evening, i wish you would dress me :) or let me rummage through your closet!

Grumpy Grateful Mom said...

I loved your post. It's always been my nature to be overly critical of myself because I want to appear perfect. But, who wants to have perfect friends anyhow!

Wendy said...

So brave! I have recently found your blog and I am so happy I did! I would love to see more tips. So helpful!

Sassy Amie said...

What a great post!!!!!

Meka H said...

Rachel we don't know each other by no means but I want you to know that you did this post just for me. I want to cry. I have struggled with my weight for most of my life. I am a size 14/16. I have come to grips with this in the past year or so. I realize everyone is NOT a 5, 7, 0r 9 and I am one them.

I love reading your blog and seeing what your styles. You just don't know how much its help me think about some of my outfits. You have a great "style" and sometimes I would say, thats cute on Rachel but I would never. I don't have any sisters (like Tara)to help me with trying new things but you keep on keeping on.

I have lost a few pounds but its now a lifestyle change for my health and me but you have me thinking about changing something in my wadrobe. I love a handbag. THAT is my weakest!!!!!

Thanks Rachel!!!!!

❤ Dani said...

LOVE this post! Definitely a new follower. Definitely a similar size. Definitely struggle with it. Thank you for writing this, so inspiring!

BAJohnson said...

First time commenting! Thank YOU for posting this. I think it is so important to stress that beauty is not all about a size 0. I had my son in October and the pounds are not falling off like they did for all my friends and it is a struggle everyday to not let that control my every thought. I would never want my son to hear me say the things I do about my body. I have heard so many people talk about the Beth Moore book and after reading your post I will be picking it up. Thank you again for opening up and telling the blog world about your struggle, strength and new found attitude about your body. I think you are one beautiful mama and your kids.....ADORABLE!

dran said...

I needed to read this right this very second. Not just because I've been feeling this way in general but because LITERALLY 20 minutes ago, I sulked and went to the treadmill and thought about how much I hate how I'm not skinny like "those other girls." Loved the perfect verse at the end, too. Thanks for this.

Because of Love said...

Thank you! I needed that!
I have never commented before but I have been reading your blog for awhile. I don't even know how I started but I have loved getting to know your sweet family.

I am the mommy of 2 girls and have had so much trouble with my weight. It has been so hard for me to hang out with all my "skinny friends" who have had babies and the next month or so look like they could be back in bikinis. So hard on a girl's self esteem, but you are right. I really don't need to be skinny to fit in with them. I know this, but your post was a great reminder.

By the way - nice to meet you. :)

Southern Princess said...

Bravo my dear! You are not alone, as you can see by all the wonderful comments people are leaving. This is something everyone struggles with, even the skinny girls. That was a big day for me when my size 0 friend complained about getting in shape. Thats when it hit me, its not anyone else's problem how I look, its mine. I have to say I enjoy working out. I'm not a very good sleeper and exercising helps. It also keeps my energy up. But am I obsessed with trying to fit back into my pre baby jeans? Not on your life. Also helps to have an unbelievably supportive husband who says I could make a wet paper bag look great! Maybe thats the trick, just one supportive person (could even be yourself) cheering you on. xoxo

Kate said...

This really spoke to me. I have worked hard for years and years to maintain weighing only 100lbs (read: skipping meals and running at 5am) but it is always about pleasing others not respecting myself and never ever ever eating dessert. Thank you for this post.

Leslie @ A Blonde Ambition said...

First time stopping by your blog and I love this post! I dealt with insecurity pretty much my whole life, until recently when I read Beth Moore's book. It really does change your whole perspective on self confidence and loving yourself! Such a great post and I love that you are so REAL!

erin f. said...

I don't know anyone of any size who couldn't relate to this. Thank you for those words...I need to let it all go too. I definitely care wayyy too much about what other women might think of me rather than what I know God thinks of me!

CAMoore said...

i love you!!! i think you are beautiful NO MATTER what size. I am still chub from Ryland....and for some reason it doesn't bother as bad as it did after Cyler was born.

ps. i have an invite for you! its a fun party you will like ;)

Stephanie said...

Love this post Rachel! I think it is awesome that you are so transparent. I truly enjoyed reading this post and will share it with others. I know that it is not always easy to do what the Holy Spirit is leading us to do, but when we do what He asks of us we are rewarded and feel great, others are rewarded too! I think your feedback to this post shows just that.

Krista D. said...

I so struggle with insecurity, I think it comes from being the little sister to a "STAR" as my Dad always called her...not to say my parents didn't love me the same as they did my sister, but she was a very different person, demanded the attention and usually captured it as soon as she walked into a room. I too have struggled with my weight since having kids, although mine are older now, teenagers, I was finally losing and doing good and was so happy and then cancer...I've not lost a pound since, but I am so happy and thankful for my life and being a cancer survivor! But I still have the lingering insecurities, I have Beth's book, but haven't read it, I will find it tonight and start reading. Thank you so much for sharing this personal post, please know you have touched at least one person with it.