A Little Bikeride

It was lovely Sunday afternoon.  A perfect day for the message in a bottle to take a ride on a cute pink bike with a delightful wicker basket.

Several, yes several, hours were spent the day before writing that message in the bottle. Everything that ever wanted to be said but couldn’t, wouldn’t, shouldn’t. Everything.

Songs played on repeat and years of moments replayed. Stop your judgement. A girl isn’t responsible for the emotional gluttony that happens while Aunt Flow is in town. Ok, she is a little responsible, but the blame falls heavily on the hormones and the ninjas that attack her uterus.

The message gets set on fire, and a wind blows and there were ashes every where. Inside the itsy bitsy beach apartment, and outside. Ashes. Everywhere. Clumsy girl.

Most of the message gets burned, with the exception of a page of song lyrics. Damn you, Aunt Flow!

Catsup remained around the rim of the bottle as the letters’ ashes and little seashells got carelessly shoved in the bottle. 

The message in a bottle was placed carefully in the delightful wicker basket on the cute pink bike and pedaled to the favorite little beach.

The sky was grey – which seemed appropriate. This is the day. The day it all got Let Go. 

The message in the bottle in the delightful wicker basket on the cute pink bike was met by wedding on the favorite little beach.Overly ironic. Even for an overly dramatic clumsy girl.

You’ve. Got. To. Be. Flipping. Kidding. Me. 

A quick loop around the parking lot. This is not the place for the Let Go. 

Clumsy girl pedals to next little beach – the water is crystal clear and still.

You’ve. Got. To. Be. Flipping. Kidding. Me.  Crystal clear and still water?

When the moment of Let Go happens in the overly dramatic clumsy girl mind… there is a storm, and thunder, and lightening, and rain, and waves, and everything that was happening internally is manifested in the surrounding environment.

So clumsy girl does what any dignified grown woman does. She lays in the sand and has a temper tantrum. Full on legs kicking, arms flailing, sand going everywhere-ing temper tantrum. She is now completely covered in sand and makes her way into the still water to get the sand out of everywhere.

The message in the bottle is placed back in the delightful wicker basket on the cute pink bike.

Clumsy girl is on a mission to have a (now conjured) cathartic moment.

She pedals to a crowded beach, parks her cute pink bike on a hidden pathway. Takes her catsup encrusted message in a bottle to the beach, where it, and it’s contents, and what they represent, will float into eternity.

Not wanting to leave her phone in the delightful wicker basket, she hands it to two strangers “to hold onto for a moment”. Because some how, that made more sense.

Throwing the message in the bottle into the water? Oh, No! That won’t do. Clumsy girl must swim. Swim farther than she has ever swam before. Out past the buoys. So she swam. And stopped. And swam. And stopped. And swam and swam and Good Lord Jesus those buoys are out far!

Clumsy girl and the message in the bottle reached the buoy.

After a moment of breathing it got thrown far far into eternity. A whole three feet past the buoy. 

Oh, No! This will not do! What if the message reaches the shore before clumsy girl and this haunts her the rest of her days? She feverishly swam. And stopped. And swam. And stopped. And swam and swam and Good Lord Jesus those buoys are out far! Clumsy girl reached a boy wearing the snorkeling mask.

“Are you the white girl who gave her phone to two black girls.” 

“Yes, that’s me”

“They leaving”

“Ok, I’m on my way”

Other voices chimed in, making clumsy girl slightly realize that she may have been a spectacle.

“Miss, did you drown?”

“No, I just had to do something I never did before”

“You looked like you drown.”

“Nope!”

Clumsy girl swims past the other voices and questions to reach the shore, the two girls, and her phone.

“We were gonna call your daddy!”

“Really, and what would you have said?” 

They all laugh.

“Thanks for holding my phone.”

Looking down she realizes that she has no idea how long she had been swimming.

She walks the hidden path to find her cute pink bike and goes to place her phone in the delightful wicker basket.

It rings.

“Honey –  are you trying to reach me, is everything ok?”

“No, Daddy – everything’s good, just taking a little bike ride.”

I want…

I want a heart that forgives,

A heart full of love.

One with compassion just like Yours above.

One that over comes evil with goodness and love.

Like it never happened, never holding a grudge.

I want a heart that forgives that lives and lets live.

One that keeps loving over and over again.

One that men can’t offend, because Your word is within.

One that loves without price like you lord Jesus Christ.

I want a heart that loves everybody, even my enemies.

I want to love like You,

be like You,

just like You did.

I want a heart that forgives.

I want a heart that forgives,

When the ones that are closest , that I’ve known the longest

hurt me the most; I still wanna love them just like You loved me

Even though I’m hurting.

I want a heart that forgives,

when the pain is so deep and it’s so hard  to speak about it to anyone.

Just like your Son, I give up my rights to hold it against them with hatred inside.

I want a heart that loves everybody, even my enemies.

I wanna love like You,

be like You,

just like You did.

I want to walk like You,

talk like You,

just like You did,

I want to be like You

live like You,

just like You did.

Because the heart that forgives,

is the heart that will live totally free from the pain of the past.

The heart that lets go,

is the heart that will know so much freedom.

Lord, I want to let it go.

God, I need to let it go.

Lord, it’s been holding me back.

And I don’t want it, I don’t want it, I don’t want it anymore.

I don’t know exactly what to do to get rid of it.

Here I am, Lord Jesus.

Here I am.

I need You. I need You.

Humble Pie, an open letter to Maura Kelly

photo credit: flickr.com/photos/cobalt/

Dear Maura,

While playing on Facebook this morning, I noticed that a fellow blogger, journalist for the Palm Beach Post , and a friend who I know slightly in real life, but mostly through Facebook, blogs and emails , Leslie Gray Streeter had posted a link to your now infamous article.

Just last night in my “life of love” group this bible verse was brought up.

A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control. (Prov 29:11)

I obviously didn’t retain that. Or represent a “life of love”.  So, I vented, and I foolishly wrote you an open letter. I was so proud of myself. I had said most of what I wanted to say while trying not to attack you personally.   “You” became that voice in my head that told me I was fat an ugly and disgusting my whole life, and I finally had “your” email address. I had finally told off  the girl who always picked on me, the voice that never left me. I was even interviewed for The Palm Beach Post. My friends rallied around me.

They told me how beautiful I am.

They told me I was a great writer.

They told me I was witty.

They told me I was snarky.

Then, I was told I was mean. (I did say I would hug you if I didn’t want to strangle you. Ouch.)

Much to my surprise, you responded personally, in humility. You told me I was right. And very few times have I ever felt so very wrong.  We have since exchanged several emails. You told me of people who have told you to go hang yourself.  How sad you are and how you have spent your time  today responding personally to most emails. As of this letter, you have over 2,200 comments, on the Marie Claire site alone.  That is one heck of a bad day for you. I didn’t see that. I needed to be heard. I kicked you while you were down, and snidely offered you calorie-free humble pie.

I have apologized to you privately, and would now like to do it publicly.

I am sorry.  I was wrong. I was the jerk, and hypocrite. I have contacted Leslie and tried to unring my bell. Telling her that I am your advocate, and you are not my enemy. I have forwarded her our correspondence so she could also see a glimpse of the repentant you, and the true foolish me. I have responded to comments telling them, I was wrong.

I realized that  it’s easy for us to write about someone not realize that we are talking about an actual person, whether a fattie , or a journalist who wrote a brutally honest blog.

Thank you for extending me the grace that I did not extend to you.

I need to take my own advice. Think twice, write once.

Moving forward,

Julie

A confident, beautiful, strong, not always so friendly  ”fattie” who is eating some humble pie.

Dear Maura Kelly, (an open letter)

Revision:

After exchanging several personal emails with Maura Kelly, the author of the article, I realized how I was a fool, a hypocrite and how wrong I was to write the letter that is below. I am now eating some humble pie. Read the revised open letter here.

Dear Maura Kelly,

This is an open letter I am writing to you in response to your article in Marie Claire, titled,

Should “Fatties” Get a Room? (Even on TV?)

I can’t believe someone who I never knew existed before today, could provoke such a reaction. I want to scream. I want to cry. I feel bad for you and I would want to give you a hug, if I didn’t want to strangle you.

But seriously, what were you thinking? Your own “point, counter-point” style of writing indicates that you knew that what you were writing was not appropriate. Especially for a woman’s magazine.

And not only was it not appropriate, it was just cruel, condescending,  insensitive, and flat-out incorrect. And I would be more “brutally honest”, if I wasn’t so taken back, and offended by your ignorant “brutal honesty”. Maura, that was the only accurate statement in your article,  it was brutal.

I won’t go into all of my emotional reactions to your statements. I won’t engage you in the playground bullying.

But I will say this.

After a rant of defending the often unattainable, and often unhealthy “naturally slim” model you boldly state; “No one who is as fat as Mike and Molly can be healthy.” I have never seen the show. So,I don’t know how “fat” these actors and actresses are. But I know that even since losing weight I am fat. And Maura, I want to inform you, that I am 100% healthy. Just this past summer, I had a full exam. Full Blood work, thyroid tests, liver tests, who knows what they tested my urine for, cholesterol, EKG, an ultrasound of my heart, lungs, abdomen. Breathing tests.  I have lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, and am healthier than one of my best friends, who weighs more than 100 pounds less than me.

If you want to encourage someone to lose weight, or be healthier, spouting off nutrition information would go alot further out of love and compassion, not after offending, degrading, and verbally bitch-slapping people.

Think twice, write once, and you will find yourself more humble, and more helpful. Don’t worry the humble pie you are now being forced to eat, doesn’t have any calories.

Moving forward,

Julie

A confident, beautiful, strong, friendly,  “fattie”,  who feels pretty.

update: This wasn’t just an open rant. I did send this letter to Maura Kelly, who has printed an apology, and a retraction on her article. She actually even replied to my email.

You’re right Julie–encouraging someone to lose weight is one thing, and insulting people is another. I feel really sad that I’ve hurt so many people, including you. I really do apologize.

-maura

109

redstamp.com

There are 109 days left of 2010 !!

And what a year it has been, and will be. Yes, that’s right. Will be!

There is still about 29% left of the year. If you are thinking “That’s not much time, so much for 2010.” Stop it.

This is not the time to slow down, give up, or get lazy. This year is not over.

What if I told you I was going to give you $290,000?

Would you say, “That’s only 29% of a million, nah, that’s a waste”.

No way !!

In January, what did 2010 have in store for you? What did you resolve to do? Have you done it? Why or Why not?

I know “life happens”. I get that. Believe me, 2010 has been a whirlwind for me.

But without the excuses take some time to do an honest personal assessment of the past 256 days, and see how you can live the next 109 more on purpose. Give yourself grace if needed. Brush off the dust. Get up. And make the next 109, the best 109.

Join me. I’m moving forward. With more passion and more on purpose than ever.

I feel pretty..

I feel pretty….

If only you knew what it takes for me to say that, and to mean it.

As far back as I can remember being “different”, I remember hating pictures being taken of me.

Hiding behind my peanut, not looking at camera.

Always being the “fat friend” I have learned how to be the first one to take the pictures of everyone else, and if I was ever dragged in front of the camera, I know how to hide behind someone else, push my rear out, arch my back, lean forward, shoulders back, chin up, and “smile”. And then take the camera back, and delete all the pictures of myself.

Floating Head.

Floating Head, a few years before.

Head still floating.

Hide behind a friend, with a fake smile.

Hide behind a hug.

A few weeks ago, still hiding-ish. (No floating head though… 20 years later, progress)

I have “such a great personality”, pretty eyes, cute dimples, great smile… … Or so I’ve been told.

Blah.. blah.. blah.. Compliment the “fat friend”…

It wasn’t until this weekend, that I saw “it”.

Over a year ago Danne did another impromptu photo shoot of me. This past weekend, as she was getting ready to launch her new website, she called me over to her computer to see a picture I had forgotten all about.

I just stood there for a moment. Looked at my friends, and said “I’m pretty.”*

Moving forward, and not hiding…

Julie

*(from Danne: “I believe my exact words were, “You’re positively stunning!” To which your exact reply was, “Oh My God, I’m pretty!””)

Red Pill Kinda Girl.

After watching Food Inc. I start frantically texting my friends little nuggets of “new” information that I had learned.

“You should’ve chosen the blue pill ” John and Nattie tell me.

Huh?

It’s a reference from The Matrix.

No, I have  never seen it. Yes, I know, it came out over 10 years ago. NO, I’m not kidding you.

So, I watch The Matrix.  It was a very intense, thought provoking movie for me.

My head feels like it is about to explode.

And shouldn’t it? Everything I ever thought I knew about food has been wrong. And what about all the stuff I never even thought to think about?

Organic local foods, imported apples from China, vegan, animal cruelty, genetically modified, hormonally enhanced,  government subsidiary, farming, high frutose corn syrup, Foodborne Illness, Nutritional Labels on Restaurant Food, Diabetes and Obesity, Factory Farming,  Genetic Engineering, Pesticides, The Global Food Crisis, Monsanto….

“This is your last chance. After this, there is no turning back. You take the blue pill – the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill – you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes.”

twirling down the rabbit hole….. and moving forward,

Julie