I've noticed that my last couple of blog entries, while sharing important chapters unfolding in my life and the life of Lime Light Fashion, have started to lose some of my signature sarcastic tone. I suppose its a good thing really, that my state of mind these days has been so much sunshine and lollipops and hope for a better future and feeling as though I can singlehandedly change the world – it just doesn't make for a very entertaining read. Well, sorry readers, I just can't shake the positivity. Its oozing out of me from every pore: happiness, confidence, health, energy, passion, and strength.
Its been some time since I really felt this powerful and awesome, in fact it may be that I've never quite felt as awesome as I feel right now. Not that I haven't been a strong powerful woman all along, it has taken all of the strength I have inside me to persevere through some of the struggles I've faced in the past few years, I just wasn't as AWARE of the strength I possessed.
I think some of my awareness now comes from the fact that I've been working out a LOT. When I first decided back in December that I was going to participate in the Mrs. Washington pageant again this year, I committed to it wholeheartedly and promised myself that this time around, I would truly give it my best effort. The first couple of times I did the pageant, I did it mostly to make friends and get to wear pretty dresses. I got out of it exactly what I wanted, wonderful lifelong soulmate “I knew you before we met” kind of friendships and some pretty dresses, which I later sold when I needed cash (the dresses, not the friends). I did not, however, really put my best effort into the physical fitness portion of the competition. “Eh,” I thought, “its only 25% of the total score, my personality rocks so much I totally don't even need to lose weight.” When I look back at the photos, I can admit, I was wrong.
Since the last time I competed in a pageant, I'd let myself get waaaaaay more out of shape than I was admitting. I hadn't been working out much at all in the past year, and I hadn't been REALLY working out since about 1999. The initial change was painful and frustrating, but now that I'm actually back into the habit of it, the results of the past few months of training are finally starting to be visible and I'm feeling stronger than I ever have. I'm aware of my muscles as I just go about daily life, and I like the feeling. Putting away dishes, I can feel the stretch of my bicep as I reach the shelf where the plates go. Its kind of an amazing feeling. I'm strong, I'm sexy, I'm . . . AWESOME. This new found physical strength of mine, combined with the time and opportunities I've had lately to pursue my dreams and do meaningful work that comes from my heart and contributes to the world with what I love, has made me feel completely unstoppable. Looking back on the challenges of the past few years that I've overcome to get to the place I'm at now in my marriage and my career, I realize now that the results I'm finally getting on the outside are the reflection of that inner strength I've always had. I just never applied it to my body before. I'm really glad I finally decided to do so, though, because now I can't stop staring at myself in the mirror, and my husband can't keep his hands off me. I'm totally hot.
I still have just about 8 weeks until the pageant, and I plan to spend them wielding my newfound power and hotness wisely. On October 13th I'm showing a collection in the Ruby Room's annual fundraiser fashion show auction. This show has been an annual pilgrimage for me and several of my pageant sisters from my first year competing every year since. Its the one event a year that I know I'm going to spring for a VIP ticket to, not just because the swag bags are awesome, but because I love supporting the cause. The Ruby Room is a fantastic charity that provides prom dresses to underprivileged girls (and young gays who want to attend Capitol Hill's LGBT prom in drag). For their annual fundraiser they give the old and/or ugly dresses that come in as donations throughout the year to local fashion designers who rework them into new, wearable gowns, and put on a swanky fashion show with wine and hors d'oeuvres and auction off the dresses from the runway.
Every year I attend the show and sit in the audience wishing I could do more, wishing I could give more or be involved in some greater way. Well this year, my wish was granted. I was asked to be one of the showcasing designers in the show! I'm truly honored for the privilege, and for the chance to finally raise more money for the Ruby Room through my creations than I could have ever afforded to spend at the show. So I'm hard at work on the collection made from ugly prom and bridesmaids dresses, and I think you might even be able to pick up on some of my recent feeling of strength and power in the collection. Its just a tad on the S&M side, but kind of sweet and girly meets The Hunger Games, meets S&M. Yah. I'm totally hot.