So, being a woman and having to deal with the whole beauty thing. I was the ugly, fat, weird girl for the first 30 years of my life, bullied and made fun of a LOT, particularly in the last few years of elementary school and Jr. high. Things were always a struggle, I was always on some stupid diet or other that didn't work, it governed most of my waking thoughts through adolescence and young adulthood. And in undergrad, there was no shortage of male acting teachers telling me I needed to lose weight, and that (at 18-22) I was only castable as mothers and grandmothers, and Juliet's nurse. My bottom half, my legs, were especially deplorable.
My body changed drastically the year I turned 30...partially due to finding my purpose in life, and partially due to my esophagus no longer working properly. Suddenly, I had to navigate in this new, thinner body that was more "acceptable" to others. I was still fairly self-conscious about my legs, though an intense exercise in an acting class the year I was 31 made me realize that *holy shit* at least they WORKED and could DO things and I wasn't PARALYZED or anything like that. I got a taste of what it was like to be attractive for the first time, for about 15 years. Then I started aging.
Recently, I was in a show where I was apparently not young/ attractive enough to feature on the poster or postcard (each of the other actors was - it was a 3-actor show). They said that wasn't the reason, but really, what am I supposed to think? I was told I would be the internet presence and that there was an animated GIF. All three of us were on the internet photos, and if there was an animated GIF, it never made an appearance. Again: what a I supposed to think? And thank god I got to wear a long skirt and cover up my legs.
Last week, I started a burlesque class. The first week, we mostly went through the history of Burlesque (which is quite interesting!), and learned a few dance moves and a combo towards the end. As we were going out the door, the instructor said, "We'll be working with stockings next week - boy shorts are better to get stockings on and off than leggings or pants, so just keep that in mind."
OH SHIT. Stockings. Thigh highs. The BANE OF MY EFFING EXISTENCE. I tried them once a looooong time ago, and never did again. Because you pull 'em up, and if you have legs of any girth at all, there is a roll of fat that oozes out over the tops of the stockings. So, the whole week, I am realizing the impact of having signed up for a burlesque class, and I am quietly freaking out that I am going to have to have bare legs, in BOY SHORTS for next class. Part of me considered just never going back. But dammit, I paid $$ for the class, and say what you will about me but I'm NOT a quitter.
So, I put on the biker shorts I use for swimming in the summer. And I looked in the mirror. At all angles. I even turned around and bent over and looked at my back end through my legs. And okay...it was not as horrifying as i had feared. I put on leggings over them. And a skirt. And cute shoes and a top. And went to class.
We did everything else first, and the stockings were the last thing. So there I was. I had pulled the stockings all the way up, and there was that roll of fat at the top. And the instructor was telling us how to take them off so we could keep hold of the band and it wouldn't roll off, and I asked the question "So what if your LEGS MAKE THEM ROLL AUTOMATICALLY???" And was told to do my best, these were cheap stockings, and I could probably find ones that went all the way up, and that garters would help. Hm. Good to know. I worked with it.
And there I was, taking the stockings on and off in different ways, looking at my roll of fat at the top of them. And again...it wasn't that horrifying. And I didn't die. And I didn't even really look that bad. And I really didn't care if I did to other people. And I realized that, despite being 47 and perimenopausal, with big ole veiny, translucent, stretch-mark-covered legs and not conventionally attractive, I am really, really damn comfortable in my skin. EFFING FINALLY.
Day to day thoughts, rants and mental detritus.