Thursday, November 21, 2013

What the @$*%???

Eating lunch at the office... because, let's face it, I rarely leave my work environment... I sometimes peruse the Twittisphere, check up on Facebook, or snap chat with my friends from all over the country. Yesterday was one of those days.  I was catching up on social media when all of a sudden, I came across a tweet from a sweet friend I met through Team True Beauty.  Brooke, is my cyber friend, and though we have never physically met, we share a bond through our devotion to writing and our passion for promoting eating disorder awareness and dispel the media's beliefs that zero is in fact a size.

Brooke's tweet was a link to an article, a disgusting, misogynistic article titled, "5 Reasons to Date a Girl with an Eating Disorder" - Yep. That's right.  Someone had to audacity to write out five reasons why he has enjoyed dating girls with an eating disorder... sick, twisted, and selfish reasons why his perverse mind thinks that this illness is a benefit to him both monetarily and sexually.  Here are his five asinine reasons- and my unfiltered initial responses to them (okay, so I filtered it a little bit):

1. Her obsession over her body will improve her overall looks.
-Because sunken cheeks, greyed skin, yellow teeth and a permanent frown help her to feel beautiful. Really? Pull your head out of your ass. 

2. She costs less money.
-Seriously, douchebag, you're going there?  Not every person with an eating disorder orders water for dinner at a restaurant.  Most people try their damn-est to act normal in public... even though it sometimes kills them on the inside.  

3. She is fragile and vulnerable.
-So are you. Clearly, you are hurting in some way and enjoy demeaning someone else's mental illness instead of facing your own demons.  

4. She probably has money of her own. 
-No, eating disorders are not white collar-female-exclusive.  Get over yourself. Just because she is sick, doesn't mean she is rich, or will buy you presents to keep you happy.  Sick, dude... sick.  

5. She's better in bed.
-"Crazy girls are better in the sack"- this doesn't even deserve a response.  Crazy... you know what's really crazy... the fact that people are actually reading the trash you post on line.  I wonder if any of the guys who read your blog, actually have significant others that can stand to be around them- I know that if I caught my husband or boyfriend taking your words seriously, he would find an express train right out of my life.  Sorry, buddy- no chick is ever going to fall for your bull shit.  

So those were my initial responses to his words.  To be honest, I struggled a little bit with a few additional four letter words tossed around here and there.  I love the freedom I feel when I am blogging, though I cannot imagine using my blog to spread a horrifying message in this way.  I spent about a day being absolutely outraged by this article, and then I realized that a man of this intelligence level, someone who runs his ignorant mouth about a disease he clearly knows nothing about, absolutely does NOT deserve one bit of my time or frustration.  He is not worth it.  Not one bit.  So, after I click the "publish" button on this blog post, I will think of him no more.  I will not get upset by him or his words and I will continue to promote a healthy body image to my athletes, and spread the wonderful words of Team True Beauty in the same ways I always have.  People like this do not deserve the attention they get, so though I have given him his 15 seconds of fame on my blog, I hope he can understand that there is such a thing as "bad press."- As a matter of fact, I think he's earned himself quite a bit of it.

So, here's to sharing a positive message of self-worth and self-respect with our girls... help them to believe they are beautiful, and to OWN their own skin... because that, my friends, is what MY blog is all about.

Love True-


Monday, November 4, 2013

Made in America

My parents were high school sweethearts.  I mean, my parents are high school sweethearts.  I grew up knowing that love was the most important thing in the world, and that honesty and trueness to one another can be a beautiful thing.

I feel the number of lasting high school sweethearts in this world is dwindling.  It's sad to me, because I have seen this kind of love and I know the power of this kind of love.  A love that starts with complete innocence and wonder... it is the stuff that dreams are made of, the kind of love we all long for.

Last week, I had the privilege of standing by one of my best friends as she married her high school sweetheart.  Their love was just as true and innocent as it was 10 years ago... when he was too afraid to put his arm around her on the couch during their first date.  ;)  -- sorry, Mike!

Flash back 9 years...

It was spring, and I had waited until the last minute to decide I would be attending the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater for college in the fall.  I was planning to try collegiate gymnastics.  After two ACL reconstructions, I had no idea if I could hack it in college gymnastics.  I had no idea what was expected of me, and I had no idea if my body could handle it... but I couldn't wonder about it either.  I needed to know for sure.

Freshman Year at UWW. After we
received our competition leotards.
So, Whitewater it was.  I had made my decision to travel 2 hours North of my little bubble and give it my best shot.  One day, as I was working on homework, I got a phone call from a girl named Angel.  She was also planning on trying out for the gymnastics team, and wanted to know if I'd like to be her roommate.  We talked for a grand total of about 2 and a half minutes... and decided... what the hell? Let's be roommates!  I remember my mom asking me afterwards, "That's it??  Just like that, you're roommates?"  And I said, "Well, it's either Angel, or a random... at least I've heard her voice!"

And so it began... a friendship that would quickly turn into one of the tightest bonds I have ever known.  Very quickly we latched on to one another.  Angel introduced me to scary movies... and a social life, while I was there to remind her that we did have homework to do every once in a while.  She taught me a lot about life... and while I didn't have a very successful dating life in college, I had the lucky circumstance of watching her develop hers.  She and Mike went through hell and back together... LITERALLY...

Mike came to college with us, then went home, then went to bootcamp, then came home, then went to Iraq, then finally came home.  Seriously... he went to hell and back.

I've seen them together and I've seen them apart.  And I can honestly say that they are much better together... :)

I have watched them become parents and overcome one obstacle after another.  They are incredible parents, by the way.

I have been on the giving end of advice to both, and on the receiving end of advice from both... and I
can honestly say, I've been so blessed to have them by my side and on my side... and also to let me know when my side is a little off.

I guess what I am trying to say is that Angel and Mike are some pretty wonderful people, some amazing friends, and some inspiring parents.

Their wedding day was remarkable.  A beautiful, October day, with gorgeous fall leaves (thank you, Jesus) and the sun shining bright.  I have so many tremendous memories from that day... but I'm going to share just a few of my favorites.

Our 7am hair and make up call was definitely early, but the girls in red found a way to make it a blast.  Angel, Ashley and I had some fun taking selfies in front of the mirror, proving that we will never get over our college quirks, and that the roommate bond is way tighter than anyone gives it credit for!

I couldn't see Angel as she emerged to walk down the aisle.  I could, however, see Mike's face as he saw his bride at the end of the walk.  The look on his face, that grin... is something I will never forget.  I could literally see his future flash before his eyes... and it looked good.

Watching Angel's dad, Greg, give her away was also priceless.  As I expected, he was bawling... handing over his only daughter, his beautiful princess, to the man of her dreams was a moment I know he had been anxiously waiting for.  Mike has been a part of the Simonini family for years, but the beauty in this moment, watching the little girl become a wife, was truly touching.
Celebrating my beautiful friend on
the day her dreams came true! 

The rest of the ceremony, the photo ops, the dinner, the speeches, the singing (yes... we sing at Simonini events), the dancing were amazing.  Angel and Mike were simply glowing, and Dylan was having a ball celebrating his mom and dad.  But it was the last song that final knocked me over with emotion.

As Mike has spent a great deal of the last few years of his life in the Marine Corps, you can imagine the amount of patriotism that was buzzing about the room.  Decked out in his Dress Blues, the groom was the perfect image of the Corps.  When we knew it was the last song, the entire group on the dance floor huddled around this couple, showering them with love.  The DJ played "Made in America" by Toby Keith, and I lost it.

Standing there, with one of my best friends, her high school sweetheart - a US Marine- and their beautiful little boy, I couldn't help but think... This is what life is all about.  This is what it means to be blessed.  This is what it means to be loved.  This is what it means to live the American Dream.

Congratulations to my forever friend, my wonderful roommate, teammate and sister.  I love you more than I can say, and I am so happy you have found your "Happily Ever After."

Love True-
Angel, Mike and their beautiful son, Dylan.  Congratulations, Campese Family! <3

"He loves his wife and she’s that wife
That decorates on the Fourth of July
But says 'Every day's Independence Day'
She's golden rule, teaches school,
Some folks say it isn't cool
But she says the Pledge of Allegiance anyway.

He's got the red, white, and blue flyin' high on the farm
Semper Fi tattooed on his left arm
Spend a little more in the store for a tag in the back that says ‘USA’
He won't buy nothin' that he can't fix,
With WD40 and a Craftsman wrench
He ain't prejudiced, he's just made in America

Born in the Heartland, raised up a family
Of King James and Uncle Sam

He's got the red, white, and blue flyin' high on the farm
Semper Fi tattooed on his left arm
Spend a little more in the store for a tag in the back that says ‘USA’
He won't buy nothin' that he can't fix,
With WD40 and a Craftsman wrench
He ain't prejudiced, he's just made in America" <3 ya, Mikey!