Today, I am celebrating me. Oh, please, please, please keep reading. I'm not egomaniacal. I'm not supremely arrogant. I'm just a girl who is FINALLY good with just being me. I am FINALLY comfortable in my own skin.
Have you ever felt like a human being trapped in a chameleon's body? I spent years feeling like I didn't really know who I was or maybe who I wanted to be. There's not time to deconstruct the whole saga so let me paint you a picture. In high school I endured several extreme makeovers.
I spent middle school working my way through the store 5.7.9. At some point that deteriorated because it's 5.7.9 not 13.15.17. So, I went through a grunge phase. That was easy because I was not affluent and the idea is to try to look poor, but it was too dark for me. Then I tried the Abercrombie phase-not so easy on a tight budget. It didn't last long. Oh, and I had a muffin top when I was thirteen. Abercrombie is not made for girls with muffin tops. So then I tried pulling off an athletic look. I'm too round for that. It was fashion, and it was fiction. Athletic I am not. I eventually settled on preppy. It was the best fit-part lazy, part chic.
Each phase represented a new effort to feel good about me. I tried relentlessly to figure out who I was. I knew God had made me me. I knew deep in my soul that I was uniquely Whitney, I just didn't know what that would look like. Please know, this wasn't just about fashion. It wasn't just about materialism. It was about a young girl wanting to feel good about who and how God had made her.
Eventually a young woman gave up. I just got tired. I stopped wanting to figure it out. I decided to just enjoy being me-today. Thinking about my public persona was too exhausting, and really too selfish. I stopped trying to find myself, and devoted myself to finding God.
Then unremarkably it happened. I just became myself. And now at 31, I kind of like just enjoying God. Unexplainably, as a result I enjoy me. I am the most transparent person you will likely ever meet. I am ridiculously flawed. I make the same stupid mistakes. My prayers aren't, but could easily be scripted. I'm on my face about the same sins over. and over. and over. I'm not proud of it, but I am me. And I am growing. I'm not so worried about how God wants me to appear as much as who God wants me to be. It's incredibly freeing.
So today I'm celebrating the journey of finding myself. It's a journey that I completed when I gave up. I gave up on myself. I'm a quitter, and I like it.
Now, I am a girl who still loves fashion, and I have found my "me" store. If you don't have a Francesca's Collections near you, find one. If you can't find one go online and enjoy a little fashion heaven on a mama's budget. I can't pull off everything on the site. But ya'll part of enjoying me is knowing I have one dimple in the right place, and a host of others in the wrong places. I have unruly eyebrows. I have enormous hips and tiny, um, let's just say that A-line is my friend. But I have a nice neck and really great earlobes. Play to your strengths girls. I love me some big earrings, a cute necklace and a nice tunic.
So leave me a comment about what you like about you. I'll pick a winner and send you a $30 gift card from my favorite little fashion joint.
Now go celebrate with some of the best gals in the world: (You'll find their links on my sidebar, so click away. They've got good stuff for you, and I don't mean the give-aways!!)
Wendy Blight www.WendyBlight.com Wendy is giving away a copy of the One Year Chronological Bible and her book Hidden Joy in a Dark Corner: The Transforming Power of God's Story.
Shari Braendel www.ShariBraendel.blogspot.com Shari is givng away 3 beautiful jewelry pieces to begin a spring wardrobe with! One for a Glamour Girl, one for a Movie Star and one for a Rock Star!
Micca Campbell www.miccacampbell.com Micca is giving away her book An Untroubled Heart, and a cute clutch purse for those fun summer evenings!
Melanie Chitwood www.melaniechitwood.com/ Melanie is giving away One marriage conference call (see her blog for details) and her new book What a Wife Needs from Her Husband.
Lynn Cowell www.LynnCowell.com Lynn is giving away a prize for mom and a prize for a teen girl in her life – the 3 book series B.A.B.E. series by Andrea Stephens (Beautiful, Accepted, Blessed, Eternally Significant) for the teen and for Mom a $10 gift card to Starbucks along with Lynn’s CD “Building a Bridge to Your Child’s Heart”.
Karen Ehman www.KarenEhman.com Karen is giving away a Winter White Basket centered on Psalm 51:7 "Wash me and I will be whiter than snow" that includes Skin Milk body wash, a white loofah, Winter White Citrus Bath & Body Works products, white lily linen and room sprays, white hot cocoa, a white mug and white-chocolate macadamia nut cookies. Along with it, a copy of her book on celebrations entitled Homespun Memories for the Heart: More Than 200 Ideas to Make Unforgettable Moments.
Suzie Eller www.SuzieEller.com Suzie is giving away a webcam!
Zoe Elmore firstname.lastname@example.org Zoe is giving away a journal, a copy of My Heart's Cry by Anne Graham Lotz and a piece of jewelry Zoe style!
Charlene Kidd www.CharleneKidd.blogspot.com Charlene is giving away a $20.00 Starbucks Gift Card and a copy of Karen Ehman’s book: A Life That Says Welcome, Simple Ways to Open Your Heart and Home to Others.
Tracie Miles www.TracieMiles.com Tracie is giving away her CD "Overcoming Stress with Extraordinary Faith" and a Soulmates Slipper with Christian Notepad and Pen.
Rachel Olsen www.RachelOlsen.com Rachel is giving away Bread for Life": a hardback copy of The Daily Message: Through the Bible in One Year by Eugene Peterson (which you can read this along with her this year) and the Williams-Sonoma Muffins cookbook.
Wendy Pope www.wendypope.org Wendy is giving away a copy of her book Out of the Mouths of Babes and her CD Yes, No, and Maybe of a Balanced Life
Luann Prater www.LuannPrater.com & www.EncouragementCafe.com Luann is giving away an Encouragement Cafe mug and t-shirt for both sites!
LeAnn Rice www.LeAnnRice.com LeAnn is giving away a copy of her cookbook Sharing Grace: Recipes- Family Traditions-Gift ideas and a Starbucks gift card.
Susanne Scheppmann www.susannescheppmann.blogspot.com Susanne is giving away her Birds in My Mustard Tree Bible Study with an I-tunes gift card.
Renee Swope www.ReneeSwope.com Renee is giving away Lysa TerKeurst’s Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl DVD Set and her CD message, Living Beyond the Shadow of Doubt on DVD.
Lysa TerKeurst www.LysaTerKeurst.com Lysa’s give away is a Mom's Book Club gift pack including 4 copies of Lysa's book, Am I Messing Up My Kids?and a 30-minute Q&A conference call with Lysa.
Van Walton www.vanwalton.blogspot.com Van is giving away her DVD for children - From the Pound to the Palace
Glynnis Whitwer www.GlynnisWhitwer.com Glynnis is giving away her book work@home: A Practical Guide for Woman Who Want to Work from Home and a French Country Wire Silverware Basket
She Reads www.shereads.org She Reads is giving away two novels, Watch Over Me by Christa Parrish and Screen Play by Chris Coppernoll, and chocolate, courtesy of the authors. They will tell the story of how their writing brought them together - a love story, quite literally, fit for a novel!
RadRevolution www.RadRevolution.org Our ministry to teen girls is giving away a copy of Do the Hard Thing along with a RadRev t-shirt! /div>