11.27.2013

Auf Wiedersehn


This is... a post I really never thought I would write. Even writing down that sentence was hard. For the past few weeks, I have thought about blogging a lot. I've thought about what this blog means to me, how long I've kept it, how much a part of my life is was and still it. 

I am not someone who finishes things. I'm kind of a total flake. I start poetry cycles and never finish them -- heck, I start poems and never finish them! I half clean my house on a regular basis. I give up on organizing, on making a fancy dinner, on eating healthy, on lifting weights... I could go on, but I won't. I'm not a finisher. It's true. Very rarely do I "stick with" anything -- I'm very flighty. 

This blog has been with part of my life longer than anything else, besides my family. I started this blog in April 2008 -- it's been almost 6 years. In that time, I graduated high school, got engaged, got married, lost my grandfather, got a job, quit a job, got another job, gained 20 pounds (and tried, unsuccessfully, to lose it), and went through a series of depressions that seemed to last forever. Through all of that, I wrote on this blog, I took pictures of my outfits, and I embarrassed myself with melodramatic text posts. 

I have decided not to write on Locked Out anymore

There are lots of reasons for this. The first one is: in many ways, I am still desperately trying to be something I'm not. Something I once succeeded in being, for a very short time. I'm not an early 20s indie pixie anymore. It's just a lot less cute these days, post-college and post-full time work. But trying to be something I just cannot be anymore isn't good for me. 


When I first decided to write this post, I knew I wanted to post pictures from the past and from the present. The one thing I noticed most of all, besides my weight gain, which I promise, I'll try not to write about that ad nauseum, was how confident I was two years ago. Look at me! For a brief period, I was bursting with confidence and excitement for life. I lost it somewhere. That's very hard to write. I don't know what happened, but I don't feel like I know the girl in this picture anymore, but through this blog, I have continued to try to be her and I just cannot figure out what's different. 

It is hard to feel like I've lost a bit of myself over the last few years. I've been through several major life transitions and I am still reeling. I take out a lot of my stress, sadness, and anxiety on my body and the results are obvious. It's hard to admit I'm in a very low place and I have been for quite a while -- and it's hard that something that used to make me so happy (fashion, taking outfit photos) makes me so incredibly miserable. But it's because I'm still trying to be this girl. And she's awesome, but I don't know how to be her anymore. I have to find a way back to that place, instead of trying to force myself to continually be her


I want to return to a place where I love myself. And I'm not sure I can do that in a space where the emphasis is so intense on how I look. I love fashion. I still do. But for me, getting dressed is a miserable experience these days. I don't think I look cute; I definitely don't think I look beautiful; and I definitely don't want any picture evidence of how I leave the house these days. The way I created Locked Out and the purpose I created it for... don't add up to what I need right now to be a happier person. 

This has really turned into a downer of a post, which I don't intend it to be. I've been through a really dark two years in my life, trying lots of different things to make it better and, in some ways, just ignoring it and hoping it will change. The fact is, change comes from the inside. I have to start taking steps to protect myself, to give myself opportunities to participate in a community I love (blogging) without the pressure to look a certain way, take hundreds of pictures of myself, and feel comfortable posting them (fashion blogging). 


I know it's gotten annoying to have my write about my body image issues so much, but unfortunately, I'm going to some more... one last time... Two years ago, I was the thinnest I have ever been in my life. Well, okay, since I was 11, but I'm pretty sure that doesn't count, considering that was pre-puberty. I felt so confident and beautiful and happy. I had Danny. I had a college degree. I felt like I was, for once, a pretty girl who people could like. I felt worthy of other people wanting to be around me. 

In high school and college, I was never overweight, but I had never been small either; I had always looked at other girls and wondered how they'd gotten so damn small. I felt inferior to other women and hated myself. I had bad skin, big pores, chubby thighs, and lank hair. It wasn't a good combination for me. So, you have to understand, the weight I was at two years ago was a pinnacle for me; it was a huge moment and I hadn't done anything to achieve it. It just, well, happened. When I started gaining weight, I felt all of that confidence slipping away from me. It terrified me. I felt so good and to get bigger -- to return to the weight I'd been through high school and college -- felt awful. It felt like I was going backwards instead of forwards, all while I was taking major "adult" steps, like getting married and starting a real job. 


The overwhelming theme of my life, for the past year, has really been my body. I have reflected all of my feelings at it and my body image issues -- and my body, in many ways -- has grown out of proportion accordingly. It's all-consuming. I'm trying to make it less consuming. Leaving Locked Out behind -- with the old me, the girl I don't recognize anymore, the college me, the high school me trying to create a persona of an indie pixie -- is one of the ways I'm working towards that goal. 


I will keep blogging. I've already started a lifestyle blog here. "Lifestyle" was the only niche I could really think of where it would fit perhaps more comfortably, but ultimately, the focus will be on my life, on writing, on the things I read and think about and care about, the things I do everyday. I want to focus on my photography again... but not photographing myself. I want to focus on cooking and Danny and my new home. I just want less pressure. I want to move away from what I was (and my fixation on returning my body to an idealized shape) and move towards being a person that I love again. 

Thank you all for reading my blog. I know some of you have been around for years and I want to thank you for always reading, even if you didn't comment. Knowing someone out there read my thoughts has always been helpful to me. I hope you'll follow me at my new blog. I hope you understand why I am closing this chapter of my (internet) life. Thank you so much for everything this blog has given me. I cannot believe this is the last post I will ever write for it. 

Thank you for being you and allowing me to be me, always.

(Also, I will still be on Twitter and Instagram, but I'll be changing my usernames ASAP!) 


3 comments:

  1. Oh Michelle. As sad as I am to say goodbye to Locked Out, which has always been one of my favourite blogs, it's been so hard to watch you struggle the last few months. You've been one of my closest blogging friends and I feel like we've gone through a lot of things together.
    I know you know, and I know, you're doing the right thing, but I sure will miss this blog.
    You've been amazing at handling this experience and getting out now is so brave. I'm so proud of you. So as much as I'm going to miss Locked Out, I want you to be happy, and I know this blog hasn't been making you happy.
    You're a rock star.

    Charlotte x

    ReplyDelete
  2. Will be really sad not see Locked Out pop up on my blog feed but I'll start following your other blog now x

    ReplyDelete
  3. Oh Michelle. I've procrastinated writing this comment because I procrastinate everything. Locked Out was one of the first personal style blogs I started reading, back when you were on WP! And now you've become a (long-distance) friend in real life. Which is wonderful. :)

    I'm already following you on your new blog of course, and while I think you could've stayed with Locked Out and just changed your focus (and that url, oops), it's completely understandable if there was too much negative energy. Blogging, and any hobby really, should be a source of happiness, not stress -- especially when you're revealing such personal parts about your life. And like Charlotte said, we want you to be happy! And I think you already are a little bit more :)

    xo Sarah

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for reading my blog! :]
xo Michelle

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...