Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Self Image

"You know who you remind me of?"  asks the customer.
"No who?" 
"She's a famous tv star."
Thinking.... thinking... who do I look like?  In the 80's I was told I looked like Jennilee Harilson the last blonde on "Three's Company".  But she's not around anymore.  
Thinking... thinking... thinking.... "I give up."
"Mimi from Drew Carry!" he says with a giant grin.
Shit.  "Really?  Mimi was a mean person.  I'm not mean. I think I'm pretty nice."
Customer " You are nice! Mimi was very flamboyant.  She wore crazy costumes every day & you are flamboyant."

Now I don't think of myself as being flamboyant.  I think of myself as free spirited. Yes I have blonde hair with purple, gold, orange & red highlights.  Yes I will wear a petticoat when the event calls for it.  But I think of Mimi as being a clown.  I don't think of myself as a clown. 

He wasn't saying this to be mean.  He was saying it from the heart.  He can't remember my name and insists on calling me Mimi.  He insists to me that he loves my energy and both he & his wife really enjoy shopping at my store.  But Mimi?  

It hurts to even write about this.  Am I a clown?  Am I a fool in my clothing choices?  And how many others feel this way about me? It's not in me to dress like the rest of the world. 

It kills me when I see today's generation all dressing exactly the same with no creativity at all. Jeans, t-shirt with some mall store's name on it, the right shoes and big knock-off purse.  

My self image isn't strong.  I get asked constantly when the baby is due?  "Must be soon!"  I've given up saying "Oh, I'm not pregnant.  I'm just fat."  That makes the person asking feel embarrassed and bad for asking.  Instead I say 2 months from now.   

I've had strangers put their hands on my belly.  "Can I feel it kick?" 
I've had children in stores ask if I have a baby in my belly.
I was at Disneyland and had a ride attendant tell me that pregnant women weren't recommended for the ride.

Don't tell me to do crunches.  I do crunches.  Don't tell me that it will go away as I lose weight. Yes it is but even thin it protrudes and the baby question keeps getting asked.  

And since I went thru menopause at 42 the chance of a baby in the belly is minute.  

I have trouble buying pants.  A friend suggested that maybe I go ahead & get pregnant jeans. Another friend turned me onto Lane Bryant new "perfect fit" jeans.  At $45 a pair it's just not going to happen. My dream pants?  Levi's 501 straight leg with the waist size left on the back tag.  

My realistic pants?  Something with elastic.

Yes, I know I'm doing the absolute right thing for myself.  I'm losing weight.  I'm eating "clean". I'm exercising. I'm doing all the right things. Everyday.  All the time.  I know all of that.  

But Mimi?  
Last night's dinner.
Moroccan whitefish one skillet recipe

I found this recipe online & tweeked it a bit.

1-3 red potatoes sliced 1/4"
1 pound whitefish thawed
1 bunch fresh cilantro
1 med onion sliced 1/4"
1-2 sweet bell peppers
Open crisper & see what other veggies you have.  Slice about 1/4" 

In a clean jar
1/2 c water
1 TBS olive oil
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp turmeric
dash cayenne pepper.

In a thick skillet layer potatoes.  Lay fish on top.  Cover with cilantro, onions, peppers & various veggies.
Pour sauce over everything.
Cover & cook on med 30 mins.  Open lid every 10 mins & tilt pan to side & spoon sauce over everything.

I loved loved loved this meal.  Enjoy! 


Michelle said...

Honey, you are not a clown. You are a strong and flamboyant individual and I have admired your independence an free sprit from the moment I met you!

G. Harrison said...

Flamboyance is a very positive trait, but if Mimi doesn't sound right to you I can understand why you don't want the tag.

How can you get the patron to drop the nickname?

Offer him an alternative? Drop your own name regularly into the conversation?

When I got tired of being called 'Sir', as a teacher, I started referring to myself in the third person ("Mr. Harrison will have to think about that answer.") and students picked up on it, and eventually added "Mr. H" into the mix. I liked that one! Short and sweet and a little less formal - like me.



Teri said...

You know why people say that? They wish they had the imagination and guts to put colors in their hair or wear clothes other than Dockers and Gap. They ate just jealous of your STRONG self image. Only person that matters is Steve and he thinks your a goddess, an angel, a gift sent from heaven for him to love.
I get comments everyday, I look like Wynonna Judd (the fat version), or kathy Bates, been called Mimi a couple of times. I ignore it, comparing people is the way insecure people act.

As for the belly, my buddah belly, I love it. They can rub it all they want. I was a freaking trapeze artist and still had it. It makes me, perfectly me. And you are perfectly Lauren.

Tell the customer that hurts your feelings and you will call him Lassie if he dosent stop! I love you!

Nina said...

Your awesome and in no way remind me of Mimi. I also know how you feel, I have been asked many times in the past if I was expecting and it really sucks. But you can do it and soon you will look sooo AWESOME! Awesome personality with an awesome body to match. :)

vegas_chic said...

I had posted earlier, before the text. You are so far from a clown, and from Mimi's appearance, but to someone conservative the two may appear the same. Your opinion of Mimi could be different than your customer's too; he may not see her in such a negative light and so to him it is a compliment. But that doesn't make it hurt any less.

You are such an amazing person, your openness, your warmheartedness, it hurts me that others make you feel less than you are. If only this society valued what really mattered, you'd be a queen among us.

I have never once thought you looked pregnant, btw. It sounds like people need to get some manners, though!