I am pretty self conscious, cynical and self policing. I think six steps ahead at all times, reaching a point that PROVES I would have been a fucking twat to do, whatever I really wanted to do.
It’s hard being in my brain. It took me until I was 26 to admit I wanted to be a writer, I am 31 now and I have only just started putting myself out there. I want to tell everyone everything about fashion and comedy and telly and films and I feel like I am finally able to whop out some of the millions of ideas and thoughts that are, so often, wasted talking (thinking?) to myself like shit. I’m doing this and my stand up and making great strides at my job. I am more confident, inside and out, with every new day. Why then, am I terrified of actually showing of my styling skills? Why, when the amazing women I follow on social media and blogs, whose selfies make me smile and put a spring in my step each morning, do I feel like a numpty (sorry Non British readers, douche bag to you guys), whenever I attempt, then immediately abort, any and all ootd pics?
Reason One: I am too cool. JK! I want people to think I’m cool at all times. Chill, not bothered, aloof, mysterious. To be these things you must shit on everything, especially things you love desperately, never try and, absolutely no earnest behaviour! Being interested and/or caring about things, trying you best and pursuing your dreams, these things are for losers and swots. Or worse, loser-swot hybrids, who happily work hard at school and relax by kicking back and playing a table top game with a hundred sided dice and wizard hats and can look at themselves in the mirror and sleep at night because they are living their God damned truth!
This, completely toxic and false, word view is one I lived by throughout my childhood and way too long into my adult life. It always conflicted with my true urges to please my teachers and do well, to be bold and show everybody I was bloody brilliant, to dress up and show off and to embrace my talents. This is also why I left school with pretty much no academic qualifications, turned down opportunities to audition for actual tv shows (Casualty and some BBC Wales stuff, what a twat!) and wasted my time on dick boyfriends who hated me (until I sacked them off, then I was a goddess they couldn’t possibly live without. Strange). Posting awkward mirror selfies is definitely trying, earnestly trying.
Reason Two: I think I’m not good enough. I’m just going to be some creepy selfie wanker and people will know I’m not proper. They will think, I think, I’m awesome and they will think I love myself, when I absolutely do not have the right to.
Reason Three: I really am awfully shy. I feel all sorts of sick thinking about being noticed. That’s it, just noticed. Even though I am desperate to be Instagram famous and be pals with Amy Schumer, and go on talk shows and tell my most intimate secrets to Ellen, I could also, happily, only ever leave my house if it was on fire. I am complex and interesting, right?
Reason Four: I just screaming into the abyss. Does the word really need to see more fat girls taking shaky photos of themselves in dingy spare rooms? (Not throwing shade here, my spare room is just dingy af).
The answer is, fuck yes! My world changed forever when I saw a documentary called Plus Sized Wars. It featured loads of kick ass bloggers and it introduced me to the idea, which honestly had never crossed my mind, that you can buy nice clothes and makeup and look pretty AS YOU ARE! I didn’t have to wait till I lost five stone to buy garments that weren’t flares and hoodies, I didn’t need to keep my ‘good’ clothes in my wardrobe for when I was thin again and I didn’t need to subscribe to the bullshit convention that was dieting anymore. Look at these queens! I followed them all, and many more, on Instagram, and I felt like I was seeing straight for the first time in ages, actually, since I skipped my first meal when I was 14 because I was a massive size 10! (I also deleted all the thinspo accounts I secretly still followed and gave Ted style lectures, to anyone who would listen, about how you think clothes look bad on fat bodies because the fashion industry doesn’t let us see them).
So, what I have taken entirely to long to say is, little girls and big woman alike need to see more people who look like them. They deserve to feel like they are proper and that they are entitled to the space they take up. If one person sees my jolly, round face on the Internet and is motivated to give zero fucks, my momentary mortification would have been worth it.