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9.14.2011

there, in the open.

i've not been feeling beautiful.

of late, i've not been feeling beautiful.

it has something to do with an out-of-sorts-in-my-own-skin issue.

you know the feeling, don't you? you must?

you don't? oh, lucky, lucky you.

and beauty is a funny thing--a fickle mistress, if you will. she has little to do with the knowing you're beautiful, and almost everything to do with feeling you are.

because all the evidence in the world could stockpile against you: men staring on the train, lovely guys in your own life who pull you close, push your hair behind your ear.

and objectively you understand. that others perceive you as such. as beautiful. and you're grateful for that. really. you know how lucky you are. but dammit, you just don't feel it. so there exists a discord, a disharmony.

and such is the disharmony that neither ryan gosling or portugal. the man's john gourley (ma {that's "my" with a funny accent} soup du jour) could walk right up, take you in their arms, whisper into your ear that they've never before scooped up a stranger, but they saw you and were overcome.

and it wouldn't make a lick of difference. not a lick.
























(okay, well, maybe a lick. i mean, hello. ).

but you know what i mean, don't you? you gain three pounds and suddenly you're bigger than you've ever been (lie! but that's how it feels). and those three pounds signal dull skin and hair in need of a trim and you do all the right things and you take long baths to calm yourself, but you wake morning after morning (for a month, or some brief, but seemingly interminable amount of time) and you think, still? because you know, even before climbing out of bed, you know that you're not yet yourself again. you're you at your worst (lie! lie! but such is the pull of the mind).

last wednesday, was it wednesday? oh heck, it doesn't matter and if it does, well then i'm starting to tell stories like my father and that's the beginning of the end...okay. so. sometime last week i went out with my girlfriend, ashlea, after work. she was meeting up with her lovely boyfriend john and his friends. and i wasn't feeling beautiful and i wasn't dressed appropriately, but heck. that's life. and i know that often to come out of it, you have to head into it, whatever it is. so i waited for ashlea outside the C train at 50th street. i was speaking on the phone when another man approached the station, on his phone, and lingered there for a moment before heading down. 

and now, when i say this man rivaled the ryan gosling, john gourley level of ability-to-raise-my-blood-pressure, you'll have to believe me. his hair was a bit too long, blonde, and curling at the edges. he was like tom brady, but not so pretty. a new york hipster-grunge-tom-brady. oh, that doesn't sound good? oh no. believe me when i say it was. it was. good. 

so there we were, both on our phones, outside of the station. both poised to head downtown. and i gave him the eye. kind of. (usually when i think i've given a guy the eye, they don't get it). but i gave him my-version-of-the-eye and he looked for a minute and then continued on. and i felt really good about it. about the manner and length of his look's reciprocity. 

so as he moved to the steps to head into the mouth of the subway, i turned to give myself a metaphorical pat on the back, and happened to look down.

at my bra.

my exposed bra.

my oh-your-top-button-came-undone-so-your-bra-is-out bra. 

hmph. 

well. that's life. 

and it's worth a good laugh.

and turns out, nothing makes me feel so beautiful as a good laugh, especially when it's at myself. 





(photo credits unknown.
if you do know, pass the info my way.
they are not mine, do not belong to me.)

47 comments:

Anonymous said...

It has happened to everyone. This is why I safety pin my button-down shirts in between the top and second button. YOU WILL THANK ME!

Devin said...

Oh golly, I know the feeling. I know. Believe me. Every now and then I get into a weird slump of weird feelings about how I look. I feel like I wake up as a different person, and literally no amount of makeup or the "perfect outfit" can fix it. I think we all get like that. What's funny is that even someone telling you you're pretty or beautiful means anything if you don't see it. It's a vicious cycle I think

Jessica said...

Oh, Meg.
You are beautiful! I know, I know. I understand the point you are trying to make... I get that way too.

Sometimes, you just don't feel beautiful. It happens.

But I love the message of your post. It's always good to know you can laugh at yourself and not take life too seriously. :)

-Jess

MG said...

I can totally relate to this. My skin is breaking out and I don't know why and on top of that, I got mauled by an insect that only compounds the pizza quality of my face. But hey, people don't generally pay any attention to me anyway. I win! Love that you laugh at yourself like I do. Makes life so much more enjoyable, no?

Emily said...

Oh this was exactly what I needed to read this morning. (On a morning when I feel not so beautiful and mostly dull. And seeing my world that way, too.) Yes, yes a good laugh at myself makes me feel beautiful too. I love how that works out.

p.s. You are gorgeous - inside & out.

Samantha O'Farrell said...

Girrl, My best friend and I were just talking to each other that we are officially starting a campaign to start loving ourselves. I am sick of loathing my body and thinking that I am not perfect. This chase for perfection is exhausting. So, who is with me? I have also been reading Spirit Junkie by Gabrielle Bernstein. She talks a lot about out ego and all our negative thoughts. It is really helping. Anyways Meg, I love your blog and your honesty! You are SO beautiful by the way

d&d said...

i was leaving the laundromat once, on 59th street, when several men started cat calling me from an open bar. i slyly smiled back, appreciate it.

little did i know my skirt flew up onto my back, exposing my bum.

i thought it was my good looks but no, it was the appearance of undies that incited a reaction.

Lottie said...

I so know this feeling and although this will not help you are very beautiful.

Laughter is one of the few tonics for this as it just makes you totally forget the self dislike you were feeling seconds before.

This made me laugh which made me feel much better and let me escape the grey cloud that has been following me round all morning.

Thanks Meg! xx

kristyn ellen said...

Now he may have noticed your bra, sure.. but he was looking at your eyes?! Right? I mean, does it even matter? I'm sure he liked your bra too.

I'd give anything for Ryan Gosling to like my bra. Haha.. all right, this is getting a little weird.

I tell stories like that too, like my father.

Beauty is a tricky lady. No matter how much someone else tells you - it doesn't matter unless you feel it.

Little Lo Hood said...

oh goodness. I feel that way all the time. I don't wish to feel down about myself or complain that I don't feel quite as wonderful as I should...but it happens. I'm glad to know that it isn't only me. If 100 people in passing told me I was beautiful I wouldn't feel any differently. I do try to give myself little compliments sometimes just so that my self doubt doesn't drastically effect my smile or posture. :) -Lo

Anait said...

Ahhhh I think I need to print this and paste into my own journal...I couldn't have described these feelings any better.

Holly said...

You took the words right out of my mouth! I feel this way sometimes...we all do! But hardly anyone is brave enough to put themselves out there the way you do...which makes you extra beautiful :)

Ana Magdalena said...

I remember the first time this happened to me. It was a Sunday around 3:00pm, I was 16 and standing outside the church when a friend of mine-> (a guy friend I have been crushing on since I was 15, mind me. I am 22 now.). Said friend approached me to introduce me to his father who had just moved into town. And there it was, wide open. They saw my gray bra,and I didn't realize it until I got home.

ah life, and the power of memory. I always get a good laugh when I remember this scenario.

Amanda Blair said...

I've been feeling this way all summer and if I'm honest, for longer than that. It started after college, once I was sent off into the world and the means I was using to define myself (college student) suddenly disappeared and I still haven't found my new definition. I always feel like I'm drifting and on the brink of discovery, but I'm not sure of what. However, if Ryan Gosling chose to scoop me up...that wouldn't hurt anything ;)

Allison said...

beautiful.

The Lewicutt's est 2006 said...

I was literally LOL-ing at the end of this one. So funny.

Larissa Wunder said...

I feel the same. Like always you speak my mind!

Robby Spratt said...

So does this mean that anytime you want to feel beautiful you just need to expose yourself to a good looking man in public? Sounds good to me! :)

Taylor Yves said...

"and turns out, nothing makes me feel so beautiful as a good laugh, especially when it's at myself. " SO TRUE.

Rod and Alex - aka: "Rolex" said...

I just ran across your blog and I really enjoy your style of writing! I will certainly be following!
Thank you so much for writing this entry. It is so incredibly true and I have never seen it put down in words in such a way. I certainly can relate to your feelings.
And yes, a good laugh (at ones self) always seems to make things better.

Dancing Branflake said...

My worst days are when I've gained a pound. It feels like the whole world is changing and I can't control it. Irrational? Totally but still a very real feeling.

Anonymous said...

One of my favorite posts yet...I couldn't help but laugh along with you...

Alexandria said...

Oh, I know that feeling. Those days. But they pass. And as long as you remember they pass, it's all gravy.

ahlin said...

i love everything about this post. because it is truth.
especially the end. when stuff like that happens and i say, oh ahlin. that just happened. and laugh. and hope people wonder why i have a smile on my face. all by myself.

Erin said...

I was feeling this way for quite some time. I just recently managed to jump out of my funk and I think it's all due to life changes. The thing I've been awaiting so long (my husband graduating and getting a job and moving into a new place) is happening. Finally. It's like a dream and it's extremely nerve-racking because it's all new, but I feel so awesome about it. I feel beautiful again. I find that usually when I feel "funky" making some sort of a change helps. :)

PS... Funny bra story. And yes, it's happened to all of us. lol

The Rigolosos said...

I totally relate to every word. I love your writing so very very much.

You are beautiful, indeed.

Erin said...

PPS... My husband AND I will be moving soon. lol Just thought I should clarify.

ali mae said...

if you didn't write everything i was feeling, if you didnt use the words that i can't bring myself to say; i dont know where i would be.

Ashlee said...

So much truth in these words it hurts. I know I don't have to tell you that you're beautiful. Because you know it. But I do hope you feel it soon. Very very soon.

Brissa said...

how is it you always write exactly what i'm feeling or thinking? i loved this piece and not only because there's a picture of ryan gosling attached to it. thanks for your story! it made me laugh in my cubicle. at least it was just your bra and not a janet-esque malfunction...

wildchild said...

oh, those days. those weeks. i've been having time like that lately too; where i just don't feel like i look like myself. but if either of those two sexy sexy men took me into their arms, i could be swayed to think differently.

~BB~ said...

wow.wow.wow. Meg - this is one of the most beautiful - achingly so - posts that I've read. It's so real and raw. Honest and heartfelt. It puts into words what I as a woman can rarely put into words, about the things which people in my life cannot understand. being beautiful and feeling beautiful. and the ending...the laugh. the simplicity of such a simple-yet-intricate thing. Wow. Lovelovelove.

xoxo
BB

Kate said...

I totally get you. There are some days when you just feel gross and no number of people telling you that you aren't will help. Although I have a slight feeling that Ryan Gosling might help a wee bit.

Those type of things, like top button being unbuttoned, happen to me quite frequently. The only thing you can really do is laugh and get on with your life. That's also how I've met quite a bit of new people. I think it's more impressive when someone can laugh at themselves and not make a huge deal about it.

A Sunday Kind Of Love said...

uh, i think i can top your exposed-by-one-undone-button-bra story.
picture this: in the grocery store (still living in switzerland), notice some local guys giving me the eye. oh la la. feel good about myself as i proceed to grocery shop for the next 20 minutes. then, while at the cash register, i look down to get money out of my bag and guess what?! my shirt is unbuttoned ALL THE WAY down to the 2nd to last button! YES!
how i didn't feel that, i have no clue.

moral of the story? j.crew button-downs (even the plaid, flannel ones) ALWAYS require an undershirt.

LeeLee said...

Always remember the last line in this post. Nothing is so beautiful than a good laugh.

s a m said...

um ... a new york hipster-grunge-tom-brady sounds like my idea of the perfect man.

Nicajoice said...

OMG! I can so relate.... :D

Sarah Kate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sarah Kate said...

Just started following along on your blog, like your taste in music and now I can say musicIANS. I'm a big fan of Portugal. The Man and I see their crew or have atleast a couple times in NE Portland at a divey bar called "A + L" Come to Portland!

Rachel said...

I felt such a release after reading this....myabe because I was releasing in a small laugh. You etched out exactly how I have been feeling lately, word for word in some areas. thank you for that!

jorjiapeach said...

ryan gosling.. sigh.

becky said...

I can relate to this in a world of ways--in an absolute WORLD of ways. The difference is I've never been brave enough to say it--and I respect you, so much, for that.

Here's to hoping that we both feel a little more beautiful soon.

k8te said...

i loved this post. i know the feeling, and it's good to laugh at yourself to get out of a funk. p.s. that picture of ryan? divine.

dull boy said...

what - no photo??

Jennifer said...

haha, my button-down shirt came undone on a first date last week... it stressed me out very much; thanks for this! I will make a note to laugh more and stress less :)

Megan said...

You need to get laid. This shit is childish as all get-out.

Or if not, please upload more entries about coffee. That would be feisty! (<----- not the musician).

meg fee said...

dearest megan,

if you don't like it. don't read it.


best wishes, meg