Jenny's Visit ~ an Empowering Vacation

We asked her if she wanted to write something for her feature and Jenny, being the amazing spirit that she is, wrote the empowering story of her journey out the Colorado to model for us. Everything below is her words ~ its along story but its definitely the kind that gives you goosebumps and makes your eyes tear <3 

 

 

I remember being told once long ago that life is like wave. For every bad moment that comes, so too will good to follow along behind it. The bad can't stay forever, and sooner or later the light will find its way to return to you...

I remember being told once long ago that life is like wave. For every bad moment that comes, so too will good to follow along behind it. The bad can't stay forever, and sooner or later the light will find its way to return to you...

I remember that this statement was meant to be a comfort to me, spoken by some warm parent or a caring friend to try and remind me to never quit holding on.  But as I got older and I grew and I changed, I came to understand that life can also swing back in the other direction- that good will inevitably find a way to recede in acquiescence to the bad.  That pain and loss and suffering will eventually have to come back around. Because they have to. Because that wave is inevitable...

Life will always move and always change. Nothing is truly permanent despite how much we may want it to be. People age and alter and move on. Children grow up. Loved ones die. Even the echo of who we are never truly stays the same. We have to let go of things in our past in order to move forward. And while some releases are welcomed, others we mourn. And for a long time I felt a sense of sadness because of this. I grieved the hard times and the loss of my childhood. I used to try and rally so fiercely against the bad. I strove to push it aside. Ignore it, pretend it wasn't there. I felt like if people saw my badness they wouldn't want to be near me  or love me anymore. And so I pretended and showed the face that I thought they wanted to see. I did everything I could to never be a burden on others.

 

 

But that is not the way of life, my lovelies. You cannot hide nor run from the bad. Nor can you cling eternally to only goodness.. You have to learn to let it all go and accept the journey that is laid out before you. To embrace both the light and darkness that comes your way. To love and respect your tears. To not hide or hate your smiles.

I took me so long to learn this lesson. To look at that wave of life and not fight against it or weep. To take comfort in the fact that things will always transform and age. That life will seesaw back and forth. To know and believe in the truth that if you can just hold on long enough through the storms, then soon you will be privy to all of life's wonder.

 

I used to hate change. Saw it as the enemy - as a testament to stealing my happiness. But change, ah...it can be a good thing. Change helps you heal. Helps you grow and move forward. Change makes you into the amazing and layered person that you were always meant to be.

And it was Ashli (the owner) from elvenforestcreations who helped me to realize this. I know...you're thinking to yourself  'how in the heck could one person and one clothing company do this?' Well let me tell you.

Elvenforestcreations is  no ordinary clothing company. These ladies are artisans, craftswomen. Pioneers of courage and self love and truth. When I first began conversing with them, I was a woman of poor body image. Built piece by piece on paranoia and feelings of low self worth. I had never really felt magical in much of my life. My job was one of monotony and science and reason. And my figure was not like the amazing girls I saw on social media. For lack of a better word I often felt like a potato haha. All lumps and bumps and unattractiveness. But I envied the warrior women I found through the interwebs. Those strong spirited souls who oozed confidence and majesty. I would often sigh to myself while reading about them. And then I'd stare at my own reflection- a mess of love handles and mousy features, and I'd feel ashamed.

 

 

But then one day I found this company. I saw their lovely garments and how the women who wore them were goddesses and witches and assassins and dreamers. And I thought to myself "God, I wish I could be like that." But I told myself my body was not meant for those things. I wasn't the right type or the right face or the right...anything. I was not meant to be the heroine of such stories. I was the sidekick. The village laughing stock. Grand adventures and magic did not await for me. I was trapped in the tedium of my own life. And so I turned my eyes away and nurtured back into my own sadness.

But their clothing kept gnawing at me. I'd go back and look at the images just wishing and dreaming. Until one day I saw the tag 'custom orders'. Both skeptical and intrigued by the concept of possibly being fitted for a piece, I contacted them. I remember distinctly telling myself, "This isn't gonna work. You are dumpy and have a booty for days. There's no way they can get these clothes to fit you."

But oh was I ever wrong. These wonderful caring ladies- they moved heaven and earth to reassure me. [Insert: It was our amazing store manager Lindsey that was messaging with Jenny to make sure everything would fit perfectly ~ she is so amazing!] They took every single one of my concerns into account. They were infinitely patient and understanding of my fears. They meticulously and tactfully addressed every single one of them. And before I knew it, I had a dress on the way. A dress made specifically for me. With love and empathy and thoughts of encouragement. I remember the first time I put it on- when I realized that not only did it fit amazingly, but that when I looked at myself in the mirror I didn't hate what I could see. My curves and lines were different, yes...but I still looked and felt like one of those warrior women I had so envied. I cried. I cried like a big ole fat baby on the floor of my bathroom. Because for the first time in my life I was embracing all of myself, both the good and the bad.

Because all of us have scars. Have feelings and features and memories and thoughts that mar us. Nobody is truly perfect or amazing. We are all a mess of imperfections- of good things and the bad- of negative feelings and insecurities and anger and sometimes even hate. And in this society we are so ingrained into believing that we shouldn't acknowledge these dark parts of ourselves. That we should hide them away or cover it all up. That only the beauty and the maturity should be seen. And my loves, that is some total bullsh*t.

 

 

It is our darkness that helps us to understand our light. It is the bad that makes us truly appreciate the good. So please, if I can teach you anything in this life, it is to allow yourself to be. Whatever it is that you are in this moment, right now. All the tragedy and beauty and hopes and scars and all the ugly things that they tell you are inappropriate. Allow yourself to open up and be all of these. To rage. To roar. But also be gentle with yourself. Cut yourself some slack and look at all those dark parts inside you and learn from them. Use them as fuel and fire to grow and be that which you want to be.

Going to Colorado and meeting these ladies in person taught me that.  When Ashli invited me out this past summer to see their work in action, I was both thrilled and nervous beyond measure. I felt like they had already given me so much, how could I bother them any further? But little did I know that there was still so much to learn.  There, in a land of rugged and mythic beauty, Ashli taught me the lesson of embracing the good with the bad. Not only in my life but also within myself. She helped me to grow further. I heard her stories of her struggles to get where she is now, heard the stories of all these amazing women really and realized that I wasn't alone. If these people could learn to grow beyond their life circumstances than anyone could. They had built a reputation for themselves on hope and dreams and a desire to please their customers. And it really showed in the product. Running my hands along the soft garments. Finding the symmetry and meaning in every single piece. For them , their work was more than just a passion. It was a life's calling to help others. To make people realize that they could be fierce and majestic and otherworldly, and that they could do it right out in the modern world if they wanted to. You didn't have to be in a fantasy city to be the assassin or the mage.  You could be them right at your own doorstep.

 

 

love that about Elven Forest. It's meant for any and everyone. Doesn't matter your gender or color or size or story or race - if you believe in yourself, you can be anything. Don't apologize for your wild. You are amazing just as you are.

Never be afraid to accept all your parts, my wonderful lovelies. All the terror and joy. Know your worth and know that it's okay to not be on point at all times. Sometimes you will rage and sometimes you will mourn. Sometimes you will be fierce and other times afraid. But never never forget how remarkable you truly are.  

I hope that your journey with these women and their clothing will help you to realize this.

All my love to you always,
Jenny

 

 

1 comment

This is beautifully written! Reading this made tingles happen up and down my spine. I feel lucky to have met you during your trip.

Brandon September 14, 2019

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