Reasons why I might have had a self-esteem attack yesterday

Sometimes I blog for fun.  Sometimes for posterity.  Sometimes for testimony building and expression.  Today I’m blogging for therapy.

1.  I like going to Zumba class because I love Latin music, and even though I’m really uncoordinated, I know it’s good exercise.  However, I HATE the stupid huge mirrors on the walls.  Are they really necessary?  Really?  That’s all I want to say about that.

2.  The last six months of my life have been a little bit stressful– job hunting, huge decisions, house-selling, house hunting, 3 cross-country road trips, new schools, new everything.  Somehow the whole process helped me put on a fair amount of pounds, and I’ve been acutely aware of that for the last few weeks.  Now, normally I don’t pay much attention to vacuous things like weight, but when your pants get tighter and tighter and you keep seeing those blasted mirrors in Zumba class, well, you just don’t feel as Pollyanna about it as maybe you should.  It is under this current mindset that I received an invitation to an event this weekend where my ex-boyfriend will be present because he’s in town for a book signing.  Gah.  For those of you who have read my love story before, this is THE ex-boyfriend.  I really wish they made over-the-counter Xanax.

3.  I went to Parent-Teacher Conference last night at Clark’s school.  As I pulled into the parking lot and was about to turn into the space, I was cut off by a zippy little car coming the wrong direction.  She slipped right into the parking spot, jumped out, and bounced her way into the school.  She was a skinny, young thing with a bedazzled cap atop her two-toned hair, faux-tattoo shirt and glitter-butt jeans.  Inside the gym, there were several young moms* who were obviously having a contest amongst themselves, trying to look like their favorite Hollywood harlot starlet.  I might have had un-Christian thoughts.

(*not all of them, of course.  Some looked like normal human beings and were probably nice and all.)

4.  In the little packet Clark’s teacher showed me, he had written a sentence that said, “One important thing about me is that I have a family.”  Now, that is kind of sweet and all, but check out the picture he drew.  His teacher read the sentence out loud to me, and I couldn’t keep myself from adding “… a fat, naked family.”  She laughed out loud.  Refer back to numbers 1, 2, and 3, and you may understand how I felt about this.

5.  Finally, I did that video blog post yesterday, after which a long time passed before I received any comments.  Normally, I would shrug that off and not worry about it, but after the kind of day I was having, I was convinced I must have looked like a total buffoon and I should probably stick to faceless blog posts.

I’m really not as pathetic as this all sounds.  Natalie made up a song in the car that went something like this:  “I love everything.  I love my fish.  I love that I exist.”  It made me smile.  I talked to my good friend Shantel on the phone and she said helpful things.  And I tried to dedicate a lot of brain power to thinking of things that I knew would make me feel better, like recognizing that those discouraging thoughts do not come from Heavenly Father.  Melanie J said really nice things about me on her blog, so she was kind of like a little angel I needed.  I thought of this post by Wonder Woman.  And I thought about what President Uctdorf said in conference about being kinder to ourselves.  Then I found this quote:

We see our own faults, we speak—or at least think—critically of ourselves, and before long that is how we see everyone and everything. No sunshine, no roses, no promise of hope or happiness. Before long we and everybody around us are miserable. . . .

“And grieve not the holy Spirit of God. …

“Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you. …

“And be ye kind one to another [yourself included], tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”9 ~Elder Jeffrey R. Holland

And (deep breath) I’m fine.  But since I don’t believe in plastic surgery, I might not make it to that little event with you-know-who this weekend.  Just sayin’.

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28 thoughts on “Reasons why I might have had a self-esteem attack yesterday

  1. I will never look at women in those jeans the same way (glitter butt jeans). I’m hysterically LOL!!! Join the club of gaining a few unwanted pounds, I’m there. You looked great on you video by the way!!

  2. Just get a nice pair of elastic waisted jeans, hide that fact with a cute, long, trendy top and some chunky jewelry and go shake your stuff at that event for heaven’s sakes! Be proud that that body has passed three children through it, made it through life this far and is still kickin’.

  3. Well, Stephanie, can I just say I think you’re great! I’ve been trying to think of something clever and funny to help you feel better… I tried to think of what I do when I feel that way… I feel that way a lot lately… and I agree those feelings do not come from our Father in Heaven.

    Your blog helps me laugh and keep things in perspective and feel the Spirit and want to be a better mother, so thank you.

    I also just want to say, I don’t know you too well, but I’ve known Matt since… oh, middle school and you must be totally awesome in every way because he’s a super great guy.

    When I’m feeling down on myself, I pray, and pray, and pray some more. I like to indulge in a little chocolate and a good book (my special “me” time) and then, my best “pick me up”: I like to think of a few people in my neighborhood who are struggling and facing trials too and I make them some bread or cookies. Service helps me feel better… every time. 🙂
    If we ever get enough extra cash to head south, we would love to stop by…
    I’ll bring you some cookies!

  4. Oh my…..oh my, oh my, oh my……

    Thank you Shantel, for that awesome clip. I haven’t seen that movie in forever — probably since it’s release — but that moment will live on forever.

    And if anyone has self esteem issues, it’s the Two-Tone Bedazzled Glitter-Backside (I cannot bring myself to actually say the other word, because that would be really uncharitable) (okay, who am I kidding?) crowd. Fads in fashion are an enigma to me. People want so desperately to be noticed, to stand out in a crowd, when all they end up doing is blending right in. So they try and one-up each other. What does that say? “I’m not secure enough in my own sense of self that I have to look like everybody else to be happy”? Huh?

    I have a great sense of compassion for the women in that stage of life — I know it’s important to feel good about your self, your appearance and your contributions to society, but PTO should not be a fashion show forum. I stopped going to PTO meetings a few years ago when we spent half an hour of the meeting talking about a good place to get your nails done.

  5. Sounds like you had a doozie and I’m sorry for not commenting earlier yesterday….I had 2 secs to read the post and watch the videos and run back out to the car where my kids were waiting to be whisked off to preschool. Good times! Why are we all so insecure? I want a cute butt too though! LOL

    • Oh my. PLEASE don’t apologize. I was just being mopey yesterday. I shouldn’t get caught up in something silly like comments, and there’s certainly no obligation on any reader’s part to do so. If comments came in just to protect my ego, then I don’t think I’d value them anymore anyway. 🙂

  6. Maybe something was in the air yesterday. I was having a majorly off-day too. Not over the same issues, but bad all the same. I decided to go to the temple last night as a remedy. I did some names in Initiatory. I don’t know how you can come out of that and not feel like Heavenly Father loves you and has millions of blessings in store.

    I made the Fried Green Tomato connection too. That girl is lucky you didn’t go all “Tallulah” on her!

    Hope today is better!

  7. Oh man, I hate those days. Yesterday was crappy for me, too, but mostly because of selfish reasons. I just kept not getting what I wanted and needed to throw a fit about it and then I went to bed early.

    And if I as a mom ever wear tight glittery pants, I hope somebody comes up and slaps some sense into me. I am no longer 14. My butt is never going to be the same. I will not squeeze into ridiculousness and pretend I feel good about it.

  8. We’re social creatures; we gauge our behavior, our choices, our personalities, by how the society we inhabit responds. It’s not a crime to gauge how well-received your blog post was by the number of comments it received, or the content of those comments. It’s all about balance, not about absolute right or absolute wrong. I didn’t watch the vid yet, but I didn’t do a lot of blogging yesterday. It all started around 9:00, and the two posts I put back up (which went back into Google reader – I still have so much to learn!) went into the blog at 2:00 a.m. because I don’t sleep any more.

    The first time someone asked me when my baby was due when I wasn’t actually pregnant occurred at my ex’s wedding reception line, just as I reached the happy couple. The ward crazy lady cut into our conversation to inquire as to the happy due date. Yep. Gotta love those ward crazy ladies.

    Actually, you really do need to love the ward crazy ladies, because I think I’m becoming one.

  9. I definitely think something was in the air. It’s probably just that we’re not used to all this rain! Throwing us off our game.

    As you know, it’s a struggle for me, too. Keeping perspective isn’t always easy. I think you’re fantastic, though.

  10. There is a story about sister Hinkley where she was going to a school function for one of her boys, and she noticed all the other trendy moms. But then her son told her how glad he was that she looked lika a REAL MOM!
    I think it may be from the book, Glimpses.

    I also just read a book by Jaroldeen Edwards called, Things I wish I’d Known Sooner. Anyway, she had almost that EXACT same experience too. It was a VERY uplifting book, and gave me lots to think about considering my self worth as a woman and mother.

    I think we all have days like that! Feel better!

  11. First, does not your day immediately improve when DeNae drops a comment off on your blog?

    Second, what is it with you and dating authors? First JD and now this KK person. (Okay, I’m dying to know. Who is it? Email me? Please? I have a fascination with authors.)

  12. Regarding Clark’s fat naked family picture: at least he drew you slimmer than Matt. 😉

    PS-I hate days like yesterday. But I hope next time you’ll remember how many of us out here are just awed into silence by your awesomeness. 🙂

  13. Great day! Ugh, ugh, ugh. I also loved Elder Uchtdorf’s talk, especially that last part about liking ourselves. I need to start “seeing myself as God sees me” and stop hating that I don’t have much to like about myself. I’ll have to first do the liking, and then the reasons will come, maybe. :/

    Hope you’re having a better day today!! (I mean MUCH better. I guess it could be better than yesterday and still be a pretty un-great one.)

  14. Don’t we all have those days – those weeks – those months. Take heart, we’ll all be resurrected in our “perfect body” and I think (the gospel according to me), that liposuction and breast augmentation won’t be there when put on the perfect-ness.
    So until then, I’m going to enjoy earth life by not passing up that chocolate eclair and staying entirely away from book signings! 🙂

  15. It must be in the air. I was just at lunch (yes those extra pounds you were talking about, happening here too) with a friend today and was just talking about how I am in a little self-doubt mode today. I hope it’s fleeting. Fast.

  16. Grumpy days are the worst, bc at least for me, I can never tell I’m a grump until its past. And it always stinks when I realize it, and I can’t control how grumpy I am, bc than my husband gets the full blast of it. Poor guy. I had one of those days on Saturday, even among all the good words of GC. It happens to anyone, and sometimes for not really any good reason. At least thats what I tell myself.

  17. I loved your video. I’m sorry it took me time to get there and leave a comment–I just didn’t want to keep checking to see if I won ; )

    I hate mirrors–frankly I would be happier if we lived in a world without mirrors. I would think that when you’re pushing 60 it wouldn’t matter anymore, but it still does ; (
    I’m bound and determined to stop comparing.

  18. Ok first of all, if you find the magic way to lose weight, let us all know. We will hoist you on our shoulders and sing praises to your name. I’m been trying for 12 years to slim down after a hideous pregnancy and it is just not working. Second of all, I watched both those videos and I think you were absolutely a cutie. And not fat. And you are normal so that’s good. People who starve themselves to fit into scrawny glitter butt jeans are crazy. I don’t wear glitter on my butt because I already get the catcalls from well… those men who seem to like a lady with some padding. *GRUMBLES*

    Size 12 is not fat. Size 12 is not fat. Neither is size 14.

    If I say it enough, maybe I’ll believe it. Or I’ll learn to will the weight off.

  19. I totally feel your pain. I’m pregnant with number 3, and am losing my mind more and more every day!! One day I’m crying my eyes out because I saw a Depends commercial, the next I’m laughing hysterically because I burned my finger on the skillet and thought to myself “well isn’t this just about perfect!” Glad yesterday is over and tomorrow is only a few hours away!!

  20. Oh Steph, I’m uber pregnant so I’m not even going to touch the “few extra pounds” portion of this post. But I want to say that I feel guilt about being absent from your comment crowd for a while. I think all the Conference-y stuff overwhelmed me a bit, so I just hid until it was over. For some reason, I’m intimidated by that aspect of your blog. I’m in a bit of a religious slump, maybe. I’m doing what I’m sposed to, but realizing that I’m not any kind of a conference scholar. I dunno. Excuses excuses.

    That cartoon is pretty much the funniest thing ever. I posted this adorable video of my son, Keller, showing interest in temples and Jesus and stuff; no one said a word. I usually get 2 or 3 comments, so when I get zero, I think something is wrong. I actually called my sister to ask if the video even posted.

    I just saw my Ex-Boyfriend, yes, THE Ex-Boyfriend, for the first time since High School. I was (and still am) hugely pregnant and it scared the crap out of me. But now that it’s over– now that I lived through seeing him again– I feel so much better. It was just fine! And I’m really glad that I went.

    • Note to all: You do not have to be a scholar to participate in GCBC. This is just a way to encourage each other to read and study the talks and make personal applications of the principles. If anyone else feels this way, please join us anyway. I believe you’ll find it fulfilling, and we would LOVE to have you be a part of it. (You don’t even have to comment if you don’t want; just commit to studying a talk a week.) If it’s not your cup of tea, that’s okay too. Really. (It’s just a saying, you know, I don’t actually drink tea or expect you to.)

      • Steph, this was a great post although I think you already skinny. If you really want to feel better about yourself, read my post for today! I finished writing it before I read your post, and thought to myself “Man, I wish I had her problems!” ha ha

  21. I think I get the purpose of a post like this. Not to beg for sympathy or comments, maybe with a wee tiny hope of validation. Maybe. But mostly just to put it all into words so it doesn’t have power over you thoughts as much anymore.

    Or I could be projecting. Because I feel that way often. Especially since I’ve lost half my readers over the past year and I’m trying not to care.

    And although you are most definitely NOT asking for it, I’m going to tell you anyway that you’re fabulous. Intelligent, witty, genuine, spiritual, thought-provoking (I could go on and on). I don’t read many blogs these days. Life is demanding, and the blogging world is too. It’s hard to have room for both. But I read yours when and as I can because it means something to me, and I get something out of it. I’m selfish like that. =)

  22. Since I have been feeling like this in my own world WAY TOO MUCH lately, I appreciate this blog. It makes me feel more connected to you, and others who have posted here. It’s always a revelation to me that everyone else really isn’t perfectly confident and happy with themselves all the time. And that makes it easier for me to embrace my own failings.

    I really appreciate the courage you have in addressing the things that you feel insecure about. Honestly, you are one of my favorite bloggers for that reason and you always uplift. Even a post like this one uplifts. Strange, huh?

    Anyway, good luck with P90X. I would like to try it, but I don’t think I’m in a good place emotionally to do something like that! ACK! And for the record, my cross country move last year gained me 20 pounds and they are not even close to gone yet. In fact, I may have gained 5 more in the last couple months.

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