Curves Around the World : Vulnerable side

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Hello all,
so this week’s theme is pretty different. It touches on each CATW’s vulnerable side. It’s been difficult to pen this one, but here goes.

Being a committed and dedicated blogger is no mean feat. Being a plus size blogger is harder still.

In my country Singapore, people are still unaware of who I am and that does upset me at times, because I feel that they don’t care for plus size bloggers here. Thankfully, I am building a small circle of like minded plus size people here whom I share my grievances with and network with.
Also, the attitude here is to each her own. It isn’t as supportive as the blogger circles out there in the rest of the world. Definitely looking to change that.

I will always maintain that I am a writer before a fashion blogger. Loving fashion is a happy coincidence. It has taken me a lot of time to really come out of my shell and shine in front of the camera lens. I guess my performing arts history helps me a fair bit, because when the shutter is clicking away, I am in ‘actor’ mode.

It has been a physically and emotionally draining year so far. Losing my friend was so painful, she still denies that she had problems with being happy for me as a fellow blogger. But I know how I was made to feel, I know how she turned painfully cold towards me on days and I would wonder what I had done wrong.

If it wasn’t for the support of the hubster and my few loved ones, I would have quit a long time ago. I thought I would find solidarity among my fellow Indian bloggers, but they don’t consider me ‘Indian’ since I wasn’t born in the motherland. That was very hard for me to swallow because it is the fact that I am part of the minority race here in Singapore that I don’t get noticed as much. Plus, I am not a stereotypical waifish Asian beauty. I stand out among the size 2s and 4s.

Of course, the blog has helped me come a long way from where I was with regards to how I felt about my body. Each blog post is a valuable lesson, the effort and little details teach me something new. I like to think of myself of the eternal student of Life, that curiosity and interest keeps me moving onwards and forwards.

But I still find it challenging to showcase my work. I still find it hard to share such intimate details about my life. I still find it hard to pose for the camera. It’s definitely gotten better in all those aspects but like everything else in life, it is a work in progress.

Having chronic depression and long term ailments do hamper my spirits as well. I try to reach out to fellow plus size bloggers or bloggers of colour for some solidarity, but not everyone regards you with interest, genuineness or appreciation. I have learnt that this is a very competitive area and the thing is, I am not a competitive person.
Im one of those girls who wants to give hugs, tell people how wonderful they are and speak of loving one another. I am definitely born in the wrong era that’s for sure.

Social media is a double edged sword.
While it aids in helping us bloggers get our work noticed, it is also quite distressing at times. The unkind comments about my body, The pervy fetishist guys, The absolute avoidance from people you look up to – it can be upsetting. Like Nina said in her CATW post this week, some of the comments are like “You’re not even curvy” or “You’re unhealthy and overweight, do something about it instead of parade your obese body”

Over here in Asia, a size uk 12 is considered plus sized. I am a uk size 18. It is still hard to get unkind looks from strangers. It is hard to listen to “concern trolls” – those who try to tell you to lose weight because it will be good for me. But my health ailments did not start when I was plus sized, they’ve been there for a long time..they are so wrong.

It’s so very hard to shop for my size here. There are only 4 or 5 stores that I can consider. So I end up shopping online at places like ASOS, Forever 21. International shipping is so costly, which is why I don’t end up buying items from other stores that I really love. Also, not all stores cater to international shipping. And if they do, it takes forever to get here which is stressful because I need those items for the new month asap.

I am experiencing a major low in my life right now. Just upset with my health, my relationships and I feel disillusioned. I was bawling before my blog shoot yesterday, because I didn’t have it in me to take pictures. Thankfully, hubster came in and helped out. He made me smile in the pictures by giving me scenarios that were funny or talking about my fav actors (Idris Elba – nuff said).

Some days I don’t end up posing for pictures and instead storm off to my apartment, only to take pictures the next day. Some days, I’ve been crying too hard and it’s such a challenge covering my darkened eye circles and mustering a smile.

This does not mean that I am not a body positive person. Of course I am.
I wouldn’t even be comfortable enough to wear what I wear for the blog and when I am in social settings.
I wouldn’t carry myself with confidence with my chin up, if I didn’t feel body positive. But what I have spoken of in this post is the side that most of us don’t want to talk about. The side that wavers, is frustrated and riddled with doubt.

But you know how I am by now.
I have been through Hell and back, and then some. No matter what, I survive. I bounce back and I come back roaring. I am so very grateful for my inner wisdom and strength that keeps me afloat on days when all I want to do is curl up and die.

Whew! This was sombre wasn’t it?
Well don’t worry, the next few will make up for this one 🙂

I always remind myself that we live in a world of Yin and Yang. Harsh, painful times help me grow. There is Always a lesson to be learnt and a silver lining to appreciate. Which is why I am so thankful for you, my followers. Thank you for your continued support and feedback. Some days, your comments really light up my face and validate why I do what I do.

Til my next post,
Have a good weekend 🙂
(Happy 4th of July for those celebrating it)

xxxo Aarti Olivia

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10 thoughts on “Curves Around the World : Vulnerable side

  1. Hey hun i want to say this. At times our own do not accept us. I know the feeling its hard. When you have different ethnic backgrounds in you its even worse. I know more than ever. But remember you have people of other races and countries who love you and never met you. I myself am one and I welcome you into my culture any time !!! lol I have planned to go to Singapore im scared now because the way I would handle the stares wouldnt be nice lol . But its okay it will be okay, just know we all have struggles. Im here in america and I shop online, they have closed a lot of plus size places where im at and im sad. Plus having big boobs is hard gotta once again shop online lol, its like oh you are an outcast. Keep your head up you will be okay. I have no support from anyone when it comes to me writing or blogging and its tough to write post at times I bet for you even though you have so many supporters. We have to look at our selves at time and get the motivation!!I have for a while. ( 6 yrs on my bday in august ) i hope you understand that you are a breath of fresh air to me; we all shine a certain way and we will never be fully happy at times. we have to find things to keep up sane. Keep going. I know I would tell myself that. we have to b our own push from time to time. well off to look at the fireworks. stay stunning hun.

    1. thank you so much for always taking the time to send these inspiring messages. It’s always so heartening to read them and I can relate to everything you say! Stay beautiful xx

  2. Thank-you for sharing this. It sucks to stand out for something you feel comfortable in yourself because really it’s no one else’s business. I think you’re awesome though.

    1. thanks so much Abbi ❤
      The thing is, I love what Im doing through this blog so much so that keep me going. And my followers like you who never fail to put a smile on my face. Tight Hug. Have a good weekend!

  3. Awe girl, I can totally relate to your post and totally know how you feel on so many of the topics. I know I live in California and there are so many plus size bloggers from here but I still feel like I don’t fit in with everyone. I’m still trying to find my place in the blogging world and it’s hard when people aren’t that nice or are very competitive and it’s like I would just like to have a supportive circle. That’s why I’m really happy for the CATW girls because even though were far away it’s kind of a supportive outlet for me. But yeah I also understand about posing in front of the camera, I still have a hard time myself actually when I first started blogging it was because I hated taking solo photos but it was something for me to push myself and I’m still learning myself. But yeah I also suffer from depression and I think you are so lucky to have your husband, sometimes it’s hard for me because I have no one to turn to. But yeah I know I’ve learned a lot about myself and have grown so much through my blog and I’m happy to know I’m not the only one that feels this way. Thanks for sharing some of your vulnerable side! 🙂

    Nina

    1. Tight hugs Nina.
      First off, it is so good to know that I am not alone in feeling this way. The comments that came after this post have been so kind and heartening. Secondly, I can imagine how it must be doing this in Cali..it’s a tough place from what I’ve heard from fellow plus size friends! I think you’re doing amazing despite it all. I and the CATW girls will always be here for you. You can drop me a line anytime when you need a cheer or a chin up. I started following you on IG and really love your style, your beautiful smile. At the end of the day, we love what we do and it gives us great joy despite the shortcomings. It’s awesome of course to have my hubby but he can’t always understand how it’s like, so I am glad to have my big network of plus size friends who know where Im coming from. Solidarity and Support! Tight Hugs xxxo

  4. Absolutely digging this write-up Aarti Olivia!!! Becoming a #psblogger doesn’t lessen our own personal battles, and unfortunately oftentimes it causes new struggles to arise. Like you mentioned, not only will some fellow bloggers not accept you because of their own insecurities, but then there are the people who enjoy saying unkind things to ‘help’ you…
    I appreciate the efforts that you make to share yourself with us and the inspiration that you provide through your personal style!
    Xx

    InMyJoi.blogspot.com

    1. thank you Joi!
      You are by far one of my favorite ps bloggers by the way, because I can relate to your openness and love for rich hues! Like you said in the IG post, we don’t have to attend every fight we are invited to. That really stuck with me. So I pick my battles and move onwards. I appreciate all that you do and am so inspired! Thank you for being part of my global plus size tribe!

  5. I recently started working at a place where the dress code is no pants, and I was at a total loss about what kinds of clothes I could wear (also UK18 here!). I don’t remember how I stumbled across your blog, but imagine my excitement when I realised there was a Singaporean psblogger who is Indian like me! I get so excited seeing your looks and seeing where you get your clothes from (btw, if you haven’t yet, check out Tassel Plus, an online plus-size clothes site that operates from SG!) and I just wanted to let you know that you are such an inspiration to me. There are days when I get so self-conscious of the way my clothes hug my curves, and those are the times when I tell myself that Aarti can do it, why can’t I? You’ve inspired me to be more confident in my body and I do wish I could maybe run into you one day and give you a hug to thank you. I don’t really know how to end this comment so I’m just going to leave it like this ^_^ have a great weekend! ❤

    1. oh You have no idea how much this means to me my darling. It’s so good to get feedback from a fellow local! I keep myself going with the blog because I truly love what I do and it’s such fun too..shortcomings aside. I would love to meet you someday, to give and receive that hug! You’re beautiful and have nothing to be shy or ashamed of. Oh if only people could see what I see when I look at them ❤
      Have a great weekend too! lots of love xx

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