Monday, 7 January 2013

Wedding dress shopping in Calgary

This trip to Calgary was absolutely fantastic.  It was so much fun to have some girls to gab with (gab, not rant or bitch about life) and to laugh with.  The weather was fantastic on the way down, and only snowed a little on the way home.

We only had one full day in the city, the other two where spent travelling. On Saturday we headed off mid-morning to the first bridal appointment.  It was such a beautiful drive, Calgary is a beautiful city! It's framed by mountains and these low rolling hills and then the city center on the other side.  Besides that, Calgary is beautiful with all it's houses, trees, and rivers! It's definitely my favourite city!

Dan's sister tried on a million dresses, and totally found "the" dress.  I mean, she looks drop dead gorgeous, and classy and so graceful. I really want to share the photo of her in it, but it'll have to wait!  Just imagine someone who is slender and graceful in a dress that perfectly accentuates her, and you'll have tears in your eyes just like I did.  Hooo boy, is it perfect! (I cannot rave enough about how perfect it is!)

After the first bridal boutique we had lunch at Moxie's before attempting to find the second boutique for her afternoon appointment.  I had a Spinach salad with Champagne strawberries and chicken.

It had spinach, raspberry vinaigrette,  grapefruit, champagne strawberries, chicken, goat cheese and naan bread.  I couldn't find the exact calories online. (MyfitnessPal said 400cal but didn't count the naan or the chicken!)  Either way it was absolutely delicious and very filling!

Afterwards we attempted to head to the second boutique, but after finding the address but no boutique we found out they had moved! They where across the city, and there was no way we would make it in time.  So the bride-to-be decided it was fine to skip it since she had found her dress anyways!  We decided to head to the nearest Chapters and have coffee, and of course to buy books!

I had only been to one other giant Chapters store, and it still amazes me every time I walk into one.  We only have a few small bookstores in our town, so seeing a giant bookstore was overwhelming.  I told the girls that they could have coffee while I skipped through the aisles and daydreamed. Haha!

I first decided to find a journal, so I could knock off one item on my goals for 2013; to write in a journal often.  This whole row, all the way to the corner that you see on the far right was ALL journals!  I'm really picky about buying journals, so this was heaven!  I ended up getting a journal with a leather spine and large pages.  It liked it because when it opened up it laid fairly flat. I really dislike journals that keep trying to close when you're writing in them!

I also came across this book and decided to pick it up. The PCOS Health & Nutrition Guide.  There is lots of information in it, but I wish there was more information in it.  For instance, it says to drink a certain herbal tea for infertility, but it doesn't say why exactly or what it does.  It talks a lot about a low G.I diet and gives a ton of recipes to try.  Some of the recipes are really easy, and some require buying a lot of things from health food stores.  I already have some recipes marked and I will be trying them this week and posting them here.  All three are breakfast foods.  I really need variety in my breakfast and I usually only have whole wheat toast and nut butter, (which isn't low G.I at all!) so a bit of variety would be nice.

I had an absolutely fantastic time.  But in the back of my head the same old low-self esteem song and dance kept trying to come out.  Two girls from the wedding party came along with us, and you see these girls where slim, beautiful, they had stunning smiles, and great personalities, they where full of grace, had wonderful style and where so put together.  I just couldn't help feeling like the ugly duckling.  I remember sitting at the bridal boutique with the other girls and seeing all of our reflections in the mirrors. I was so taken aback by how big I still look. (Duh! I'm still Obese!) And how wonderful they looked.  My coat was too big and ill-fitting, I wore black and pink running shoes with my orange dress coat, my hair looked so gross (yay Alopecia, where your hair thins and  falls out), and I decided to not wear make-up.

What struck me, was how I kept saying in my head, "Oh they're only talking to me because they're friends with Dan's sister.  Normally they wouldn't even talk to me."  As if!  These girls where very nice to me, and I had to keep reminding myself that it was okay to partake in the conversations. I am indeed smart, funny and not a lesser individual than they are.  Sure they where slim, with stunning smiles and full of humor.  But just because they're naturally beautiful and slim, does not mean that they think I'm not worthy of their time and conversation.  I did have a realization while I was there, that I genuinely liked these girls.  But I would never ever try to be friends with them, why?  Because I would just assume that they would never want to be friends with me.  All of them are slim, why would they want a fat friend? I would just be "that" friend.

I'm now over that self-esteem blip.  I just had to keep reminding myself of how much I have changed, and that I am no uglier than other girls out there.  I'm just different.  They're not absolutely perfect, they have rough days, ugly days, and so do I.  Those ladies where wonderful to talk to, and one even gave me a hug twice.  I really need to be more accepting of others, and accept that they can like me too for who I am.

I must say, I was also jealous of how many dresses Dan's sister could try on!  I could only try on two dresses in the whole city when I went dress shopping for my wedding.  Neither of them I liked much.  I ended up picking the one that was "less popular" and eventually grew to like it, even though I didn't like it at first.  I remember distinctly that the only things that where said about my dress (and me in it) was that it "looked good".  Or, "I like that dress".  Nobody said that I looked stunning, gorgeous, beautiful, nothing.  I remember only about two people said I looked good on my wedding day.  Everyone else said non-committal things like, "I like your hair-do".  Or, "I love the beading on your dress."  Or, "did you get someone to do your makeup?"

I'm not holding anything against Dan's sister for her beautiful dress, and how wonderfully her wedding is going.  It just drudged up memories that I tried to bury away.  Things I wanted for forget, and say didn't matter.  I am so completely happy that everything is going so well for her.  In fact I think I'd be a wreck if she was having a bad time with the planning.  It actually makes me feel better about everything to know that things are going well for her, and that I can offer her advice if she needed it!

What an emotional post! I cried like three times writing this and contemplated not posting it.  But this is an important part of my journey and being true to myself!

In the grand scheme that is life, it's is really silly to be intimidated by women who are slim.  For all the preaching out there for accepting larger women, we also need to realize that smaller women are the same, just a different shape.  Just because a woman is larger, doesn't mean that she will be any more accepting of me either.

I believe it's really important to shed light on self-esteem issues like these.  For these issues directly effect how I treat myself.  I could have binged to cope, I could have starved myself to cope.  But I didn't, I recognized the issue, addressed my feelings, and then let it go.  I'm all the better for it.

Thank you for riding my emotional roller coaster! Do you have weird self-esteem issues? Can you relate?


  1. I still have those self-esteem issues too... Even after having lost so much weight. I hate those moods like all I've done so far hasn't been good enough. I KNOW it has, but my emotions take over sometimes. I've heard a lot of people struggle with this. Just keep reminding yourself of the work you've done so far; look at old pictures and remind yourself of how far you've come and how amazing you look!!! It's hard not to, but try not to compare yourself with others so much... Easier said than done; I know.

    Lastly, I think that at some point in the future you should have a vow renewal ceremony. Maybe your 10th anniversary? Even just something small for family because... You deserve to wear a dress that you love! You deserve to feel as beautiful as you are. And just think of how much fun it would be to go shopping and try on all those amazing dresses ( could always do it just for fun!).

    1. Oh yes, I kept reminding myself. Sometimes it's hard to do though :)

      I really want to renew our vows, but not because I want to look pretty. I want to do it, for my husband and I. I was thinking of throwing myself a party when I get down to goal weight, so that way I can wear a pretty dress! I guess if we renew our vows, I don't want it to just be about me getting what I want! Maybe one day I'll try on dresses for fun, however ;D

  2. This post was so beautiful! Good for you for writing it!
    I have the exact same issues that you do. I love my mom and sister, but they are both so skinny, when I hang out with them some days I get so depressed because I feel so huge. Blah... it's so sad we live in a society where these things even matter!
    I know when I choose my friends looks don't even matter. In the end I find if I meet a girl who is gorgeous but had a horrible personality I don't even find them attractive anymore. It's gross.
    I love that I get to read your blog and get to know you better! I never knew all these things about you... I am definitely coming to your party! (assuming invite hahaha). Or this summer we should both bring fabulous dresses to the reunion and rock them while camping!

    1. Maybe I will buy a summer dress just for the reunion! That sounds like a fabulous idea!