Emily is another wonderful Shaped by Style blogger, and one whom I feel I have clicked with a lot because we share a love for thrifting — as do all the SBS gals! — we sell vintage on Etsy, and we’re always looking out for a great deal. And also, sewing things. And our mutual love for colorful vintage. Plus, she always has really insightful, thought-provoking things to say when opinions are given, which is something that I admire. All this to say, I hope you all enjoy Emily’s post as much as I did (and then go visit her blog for more!)
Inside, I cringe, but I am also not surprised. After all, my daughter watches me get ready every morning — trying on different combinations of clothes, shoes and accessories; running back and forth between the closet and the mirror; adjusting things so they are just so; turning to inspect my outfit from every angle. She sees me set up my camera, and stand in front of the closet doors to pose for photos, then look over each photo with a critical eye. Sometimes she poses with me, grinning, holding my hand; sometimes she lies on the bed and watches me.
What is she thinking as she watches this display? What assumptions are being formed in her head as she observes this ritual? What does it mean to her that I do these things?
Here is what I want her to know: That the clothes we wear, the face we show to the world, the way we look can be a source of joy and empowerment, no matter the shape of our body. That we get to choose some of the messages we send to others about ourselves through our appearance, but that we can’t control how they interpret those messages. And that those messages are still only one very small part of who anyone is.
Right now, my 3-year-old darling loves playing dress-up in her cousin’s old flower-girl gown, and picks out her own clothes each day so she can wear something “cute.” And I am happy to share in her joy at crafting an appearance that pleases her. One day, this joy may fade; she may not share my love of style and fashion forever. And that’s OK. But I hope I can give her the knowledge that her body and her appearance belong to her, and her alone, and that owning every bit of who we are can give us great strength.
And I wish that same strength for Kristina and her beautiful baby girl, and for all the mamas and daughters out there! Thanks Kristina for giving me the chance to share my thoughts with your readers. Join me over at my blog , find me on Instagram, or check out my Etsy shop. And join me in wishing Kristina a very heartfelt congratulations!