Thanking Out Loud

So many amazing things happened to me in those past 50 days that sometimes I honestly think i’m dreaming.

I constantly say that if I would have known I would get so much love and opportunities I would probably start this blog a long time ago! But life has its’ way of making things happen when they are supposed to happen, and eventually I am glad I started out when I did. I began the blog really ready, with so much will and full of ideas, and that way I did not give up even when I had difficulties ( and god knows I had my share of them!).

On the other hand, I am also glad I did not wait longer. Perhaps you remember my introduction post where I wrote I wanted to wait until we’ll move to our new apartment. But in the meantime the transition has been delayed again (the date now is end of May), and when I think of all the light this blog has brought into my life I have no doubt that posponing it would not have been a right decision.

Here are just some of the wonderful things that happened to me during this time:

* I met some wonderful people that helped me greatly with the blog. Among Them are the logos’ illustrator Elite Avni, My wonderful Photographer that got me from the first minute Uri Haelyon and the invincible wordpress programmer and supporter Shay Atik who solved countless issues with patience.
The support of people around me was also amazing, especially of my dear husband who did everything in his power and a little more to contribute to the blogs’ success, and also my friend Asaf Yehezkel who gave me an invaluable technical and mental support when I just began.

* I got to write about several sellers and designers and found out that my words actually have influence! That after I write posts about a designer people actually talk to them, go check and even buy! This is especially pleasing to me since I think the designers for plus size in israel has progressed tremendously in the past few years, and it gives me much pleasure when people hear about them because of me.

* Shortly after the blog went up I got invited by the manager of Pipa to come and do a photoshoot of their new collection. So besides the fun I had it also made me realize how important a good photographer is for my blog. I decided to try and get a professional photographer at least for the store reviews I do, and I am really happy with the result.

* On February 26th, less than 10 days after my blog went online (!!), I got a phone call from the biggest women’s magazine in israel. They wanted me to be in an article about plus size bloggers and also recommend others that will be in it with me. of course I was extatic! This was way past anything I expected. The photoshoot was last week and the article is supposed to be on next months’ issue – i’ll update, of course.

* Shortly afterwards I was approached by a TV reseacher working on a new documentary series dealing with plus size life from various aspects. Naturally, I spoke about plus size fashion and self-acceptance. I hope things will progress soon and I’ll have more to tell.

* I received several invitations for shows and galas which is fun and also helps me stay updated with stuff that are relevant to my readers. I also found out I was important enough to have a taxi paid for even though I came from afar!

* And lastly, something that may not sound as big as some of the others but to me it meant everything. A couple of days ago when I left a restaurant with my husband, a gorgeous girl stopped me. She told me that because of me she learned to enjoy and love fashion, that in the past all she would wear was black tunics and tights and now she wears dresses and colors and feels great.
I cannot even begin to describe what this conversation did to me. I get quite a lot of great comments online, but to hear it face to face from such a beautiful girl, that you can see how she also feels beautiful – that’s the greatest thing I could ever ask for. I literally ended this conversation with tears of joy. I felt that if, god forbid, anything would happen to me right now – I could go with the knowledge I did good in my life.
It also didn’t hurt that a minute after we left another woman walked nearby and said “hey! I know you from (a facebook group), you are gorgeous!”

I want to continue that line of thought when I summarize this period. A lot of amazing things happened, but I also found out that this world also has its’ share of gossip, envy and pettiness. I discovered that not everyone who are so nice and charming online are also like that in reality. However, those moments are so insignificant in the grander scheme of things…
I always felt a bit awkward about revealing comments like i’m about to do here. I feel it somewhat breaks the intimacy. However, I decided to do it anyway because those are the comments I turn to when something of the unpleasant things I mentioned earlier happens. It helps me remember in an instant why I do what I do.
This is also the place to emphasize that you are all more than welcome to write to me any time – through facebook, the blog, email, whatever you feel like. I answer everyone and try to help as much as I can. Don’t be embarrassed to ask me about my size or weight – I am not embarrassed about it and if it can help you I am glad to help.

So here are some of the comments and messages that move me each time:

Dorit:
“I just wanted to let you know that because of the pictures you post I decided to wear a dress for the first time. I may be a lot bigger than you but I still decided to try a dress for my daughter’s Bat Mitzva.”

Ilana:
“You are inspiring! I always turn to black… try to reduce myself… keep posting such positive posts!”

Ruby:
“If only you knew how much you have given me. they say it’s only clothes but it’s much more – it’s about self perception and confidence and how everyone looks at you. you have a place in heaven!”

R.:
“For a year I read the forum every day and told myself that if May wears dresses I can wear them too. I did a huge change in my wardrobe, also because of you (and thanks to all of the forum members).

Ayelet:
“You must be a personal stylist, maybe even focus on larger women who have harder time finding clothes. If you don’t do it it will be a waste of talent and taste.”

Karla:
thank you, May, for being an inspiration and positive role model. I hope my daughters (should they ever exist) will learn to love themselves much earlier in life than I did because of the influences of people like you.”

Noomi:
I love the outfits you wear and even more the selfconfidence that you radiate. I hope it can rub off a little on me.”

And some more anonymous ones:

“May. I usually only read here and never commented yet, but I had to make an exception to say there wasn’t one look you posted and I didn’t like. You are an inspiration. keep posting such happy and versatile looks.”

“Hi May, I rarely write here but I had to say hello to one of the inspirations for my dress-full closet!”

“Like! you and everything you wear. you complimented me earlier about the colors, only you didn’t know you are one of my sources of influence since way back”.

“you are like a shot of courage”.

“May, I learn so much from you. it’s always fall here… grey, blue. black…”

“you are the proof that a woman in any size can be a fashionista”

“I follow you with admiration. you are an example for a woman who lives peacefully with herself and knows exactly what works for her. I am from the fashion business and rarely do I meet women (even the skinny ones) who live in such harmony with themselves. My 14 year old daughter is beautiful and a bit bigger and I show her your pictures as an inspiring woman.”

“Hi! I follow your looks every day. I really enjoy the positive attitude and sense of style. I want to thank you, some of that has stuck onto me.”

What more can I say after so much love, optimism and positivity flowing my way…? Only that I hope I will manage to keep on like that, that I may inspire some more women and that if even one woman will learn to love herself better because of me – Then I have done my part.

And you – always remember how gorgeous you are, inside and out. no matter how much you weigh, what’s your hight, what’s the color of your skin or hair or eyes – you’re flawless.

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יותר מ- May Graff

לוק יומי 23.9.16

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