Wednesday, July 14, 2010

What a Shame...

I just read this, and it makes my heart break for girls all over the country:

Forever21 Store Now Calling Size 12 and Up "Plus Size"

Is this what our society has come to? The average American woman is a size 14. Granted, a size 14 can vary between clothing lines and designers. But according to Wikipedia, the average measurements for an American woman are:
-39 bust
-31 waist
-41 1/2 hip
According to the original standardized size charts created in the 1950's, this is roughly between a size 12 and 14. However, because American clothing lines have strayed so drastically from this standardized sizing, these measurements now fit a size 14/16. However, the fact still remains that the Average American Woman (AAW) can classify herself as a size 14 by traditional American catalog sizing standards. (Info from Wikipedia)

According to Forever21 size charts, these measurements are the equivalent of an XL or a size 16. Most clothing retailers would consider a size 16 to be the smallest in the plus size section. However, at Forever21, it's now a size 12 (this is a "large" in their clothing line) that is considered to be the smallest size in their "plus size" section. In fact, if you walk into a Forever21 and ask for a size 12, you will be directed to their plus size section (or as they refer to it, the "expanded sizes" section).

So now, young girls who are still smaller than the AAW and are by NO MEANS overweight are going to be told that they need to start shopping in the "plus" section---oops, excuse me. The expanded sizes section (as if calling it something different will make these girls' self-esteem any better).

I don't want to sit here and blame the media or clothing lines or designers for the increase in eating disorders and self-mutilation among teenager girls over the past 2 decades. Because pointing fingers at this point will not take back any of the damage that has been done to their self-esteem or body image. But at this point, we need to be focusing on stopping this disgusting trend and fixing the damage that has been done. Forever21 is not only perpetuating this horrible trend, but is taking a huge step towards creating an all-new generation of girls who think that being smaller than the AAW is still too large. My heart is breaking for the girls who will be effected by Forever21's awful decision.

I'm making a personal choice not to purchase clothing from Forever21 because of this. I will not support a company who will perpetuate the negativity that society portrays for teenage girls and their body image. I hope that you will consider doing the same.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Still Waiting

It's been a very short, but drawn-out summer. Not in a bad way. It seems like the fun parts of this summer have gone by so fast--the family vacation camping in the woods, girls weekend, the nights out with my friends--which I suppose is typical. Time flies when you're having fun, right? But the serious parts, the parts that involve me being concerned with my future and a job, those are the ones that have been so drawn out.

If everything goes as planned** then I will be moving back to BG in about 5 weeks. That leaves me 5 weeks to figure out what I'm going to be doing when I move back to BG.

**"Planned" is a funny word. Is it the plan that I want, the plan that God wants, the plan that God is giving me because He knows the desires of my heart? For the purposes of this rambling post, lets assume it's the plan that God is going to provide me with after He has considered what my heart's desires are. Aaaaaaand break.

I have a few plans. Let's review:
Plan A: Get a full-time teaching job within an hour drive of BG
Plan A.2: Get accepted into graduate school at Toledo, take classes, and work as a substitute teacher
Plan B: Work as a substitute teacher and get another part time job so I can pay my bills
Plan C: Find a sugardaddy who can pay my bills for me (insert "Bills" by Destiny's Child here)
Plan Z: Move into my parents' house indefinitely, mooch off of them until OH joins the Army so I can live off of his paycheck and let him be my sugardaddy (again, insert "Bills" here)
Plan Z.2: Plan Z, only H leaves me (because he can't pay my bills, can't pay my telephone bills, can't pay my automo-bills...) and I end up being the crazy cat lady.

So there you have it; my future in a bullet-point list. Okay, not truly bullet-point, mainly because I can not figure out how to bullet-point my list, but you get the idea.

Up until recently, I had given up on Plan A and moved on to Plan A.2. I've submitted my application for grad school, picked out my program (English as a Second Language), and sent out my requests for letters of recommendation. Now I wait. In the meantime, I'm still filling out any teaching applications that come my way, just in case God decides to throw me something at the last minute. People tell me that it's okay to trust God to bring things my way, but I have to go out and put action into what I want, too. So here's my take on that: God knows what my true desires are, but I do have to put in my end of the deal--I have to put in the applications and trust Him to take those and put me where He wants me when He wants me there. So I've still been putting in the applications for teaching positions, as well as applications for other various jobs in the Toledo/BG area. Nothing so far has come through. While that's discouraging, to me it just means that God's got something else out there planned for me that will be perfect. So I wait. And I keep applying.

I spent yesterday applying for grad school, and randomly filled out an application for a position at a high school in the Toledo area. I figured that at this point, maybe God was steering me solely in the direction of taking classes and substitute teaching, but thought that I would keep my end of the deal and just keep turning in applications until I know what the plan is for sure. Today I got a call for an interview for this particular position! I'm trying not to get my hopes up too much, because I've been brokenhearted about this kind of thing before. I'm just going to keep going forward with both the interview and pursuing my application to grad school and see what exactly God brings my way.

So. In summary:
-I have plans, some of which include teaching, some of which include cats.
-I have an interview on Monday and a graduate school application in-progress.
-I have a family and a boyfriend who support me through all of this, which is probably the only reason I haven't pulled all my hair out or given myself a bleeding ulcer.
-I have a wonderful Heavenly Father who is taking care of me and providing for me, even if it comes at the last minute. He's teaching me the importance of trusting Him and waiting on His timing. And as long as I continue to follow His word and focus on making my life glorify Him in everything I do, He will bless me with a final plan that takes the desires of my heart into consideration.

I might still be waiting, but I'm being blessed while I'm doing it! (And maybe I can pick up a cat along the way...)