My Midlife Super Power Is Wearing Two Invisibility Cloaks

My Midlife Super Power Is Wearing Two Invisibility Cloaks

Its Cuppa and a chat time people, and this one is a little personal for me. I hope thats ok! Have you ever seen Wonder Woman and me in the same room? No? Well there is a reason for this…….Well, actually, thats a lie, despite what our very similar looks and figures may say (ahem) Im not her. But I do occasionally, apparently become a kind of superhero, or at least I have a fab superhero uniform, so it could almost be true. Im Kerry, midlife ordinary gal, loves a gin, and I am often placed in not one, but two invisibility cloaks. Im telling you the secret of my midlife super power. Nice to meet you.

Now, let me explain.

My Midlife Super Power

In April this year, I turned 45. This apparently, officially makes me middle aged. I have no issue with being 45, but Im not a fan of being called middle aged. I will expand on why in a sec. I am also roughly, a UK clothes size 18. This makes me what is called plus size here in the UK. Again, I have no real issue with carrying extra weight, it dosent change my soul, but, just like the “middle aged” tag, it brings with it a change in peoples perception and attitude. This is where the invisibility cloaks come in.

My midlife Super power

Yep, this is me first thing in the morning

Up until just a few years ago, I never had to worry about putting on weight. I was incredibly active, always having played netball, always had horses, and although I have always had a healthy appetite, (I love me some cake), never really struggled to keep my weight down. I then went through an extremely rough few years where for various reasons, I gained weight and, have somehow kept those extra few stone swaddled round me. The reason I am telling you this is because I want you to understand that I have been what the majority class as “normal” weight, and I have been larger and therefore, have seen both sides of the fence. The same as I have been young, and now I am “middle aged”. Iv stood on both sides of the road. Now I have got that bit out of the way, lets get to the juicy stuff. The stuff that explains what the hell I am going on about in my usual random way!

The first thing I am going to talk in reference to is fashion. It is becoming more and more apparent, that on Instagram, unless you are willing to post countless “outfit of the day photos” it is almost impossible to grow. Especially amongst my age group for some reason! They blooming love an outfit photo! Now, I have never been a follower of mainstream fashion, preferring instead to always have my own style and wearing what the hell I liked. Camden Market (secondhand, boho, new age-ish) was one of my favourite places to buy clothes in my younger days. I was the girl that in my younger years, wore huge, oxblood DM boots with hot pants, or dainty, pretty heels with rara skirts and leg warmers (it was the 80’s/90’s remember). I was even known to go out in a sailors suit! I was confident enough to wear whatever took my fancy and I just enjoyed it. Im still a little like that (don’t panic, I promise you no hot pants), I still enjoy clothes, but if Im honest, I stay away from the stuff I see on everyones feeds. It puts me off seeing everyone in similar things, (do not get me started on slogan tee’s). I don’t really look for fashion inspiration on the internet. After all, I don’t want to look like someone else, so Im usually preferring to just do my own thing, enjoy what I like, (I love colourful clothes), and will be like that whatever my size!

my midlife super power

Raising a glass to judgemental twits

What has become very apparent though, is the attitude of other people. People can act like you are invisible when you are larger. People can treat you like your opinion does not really hold any weight (excuse the pun) when you are above a certain size. After all, what on earth can YOU know about fashhh-hun pork chop? I don’t think people are nasty, (well some are, arses) but I think people are insensitive and judgemental sometimes. They make assumptions about you by your size/age. Even a fellow blogger that I class as a friend said once on her Instagram stories, “Oh, Im a disgusting fat pig with what I have eaten today, I reckon I am going to be at least a size 16 by the morning”. Now, I am not particular sensitive about my weight, I have had waaayyy more pressing things to worry about, but I did find that this throw away comment hit a nerve. The indication that anyone bigger than her perceived “normal” weight was a “disgusting fat pig”. It made me feel self conscious and shitty for a few days. The fact that I still remember her words shows me that it hurt me, and I can shake shiz off pretty easily. I know she isn’t a horrible person, but its this insensitivity and carelessness with words that can make people feel shit. Its not nice.

my midlife super power

Your opinion of me is none of my business

You then have the middle aged invisibility cloak. another string to my midlife super power bow. This one is the one that you apparently must put on when you go into any shop that is super trendy. Or where the shop assistants are all willowy, beautiful, twenty year olds. That cloak must close around you because they will offer help to all the people in the shop that look like them before wandering over to you. Im not saying for one moment that they are unfriendly or unhelpful, but they make an assumption that you have perhaps got lost. You have wandered into their chrome, glass and shiny floored shop by accident, while obviously looking for Lakeland so you can top up on jam jars. (Im not sure if middle aged plump people regualy buy jam jars, but you get my drift).

Having been on both sides of the fence, I have seen first hand the difference in how people see you when you don’t fit their idea of “normal”. I have seen it. Even thinking about the bloggers etc that are chosen for press trips or photo shoots. You can pretty much guarantee that the vast majority will be under 30 and under a size 12. Its very rare to see a plus size blogger on these trips. They are incredibly under represented. The same as older bloggers, and although there as been a small shift in this area, you will again see, if an older blogger IS chosen, they will pretty much guaranteed to be a size 12 or under. The over 35’s are often very under represented, even from skin care brands where their main target audience is the over 30’s. The brands marketing team decide that the impact will be greater using young, slim bloggers, no matter what the brand are selling. Having worked in the skin care industry for the last 20 years, I know this to be true from an insiders point of view too!

my midliife super power

Obviously I eat candy floss for midnight snacks

Over the years, I have learnt to accept that some people will assume that I must surely live on chocolate eclairs all day, or use a mobility scooter to go from my lounge to my kitchen. I clearly do no exercise and would not know what an apple was if it was launched at my head. I am unhealthy, and I clearly have chip shop chips for my breakfast, lunch and dinner every day….. Im obviously exaggerating, but again, you get my point! I don’t compare myself to others, thats destructive and we spoke about this in my post Comparison – the stealer of joy.

Now, my honest view on all of this rubbish is quite simple, and I will try to be tactful……

Keep your judgemental opinion to your obviously perfect, faultless self. Ta

 (Ok, tact is not my strong point) People are people. No one is better than anyone else. Not clothes size, not age, not followers, not your wardrobe, make anyone better than the next person. No one, not a single person, has a right to judge anyone else. There is not another soul that knows the full extent of what someone is going through or been through, so people should keep their narrow minded, judgemental views to themselves. Im personally, not the biggest fan of incredibly vain people, I don’t like that level of self absorption, but I would never judge them. The constant selfie posting, validation needing or fishing for compliments can hide their own issues, so I am understanding of that. I don’t sit in judgement. Its not my place to. Who the feck am I to be judge and jury?

My Midlife super power

oh look, its me not giving a shiz about peoples opinion

So, I suppose what Im saying, (finally) is that I am ready to fling off my cloaks. Im ready to stand up and be counted and quite honestly, don’t give a flying feck if people like it or not. I may decide to lose weight, I may not, but that dosent change my heart, my integrity, the person I am. But if I do lose weight, people will suddenly see me. Thats the shallowness of our society now Im afraid. You only have to look at social media to see how “beautiful people” get a far bigger fan base and following. Its easier for them. Fact. I have no issue with gaining more years. I am sadly incredibly aware of how some people don’t get that privilege, but I will not age quietly. Ill still be kicking my (Jimmy Choo) heels up on girls holidays, going on impromptu pub crawls with my husband, and I dare say, getting drunk with my sons now they are of age. I also know, as I get older, I will give even less fecks about peoples opinion of me. My cloaks will be off, put in the back of the wardrobe, along with my leg warmers……

 

So, what I would love to know, is is there a cloak that you feel people think you wear? Have you been guilty of judging a book by its cover? Do you feel as a society that we have become more shallow, more judgemental? As ever, I would love to know your thought on this. You know me by now, I have no issue with you being as brutally honest as you feel. I love honesty! Lets chew the cud

 

 

 

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25 Comments

  1. Victoria Austin
    September 10, 2018 / 7:07 pm

    For me it’s that I’ve often felt like I’ve been treated differently when I’ve worn make up to when I haven’t (particularly by women in shops!!) I’ve wondered if it’s a confidence thing, whether I do actually act differently when wearing make up. Great post though! x

    • kerrylifeandloves
      Author
      September 10, 2018 / 7:26 pm

      Ahhh thats an interesting one! Funnily enough, when I think about it, if I run up the shops without make up on, (as I often do) I often say “oh I hope I dont bump into anyone”. Maybe we do feel like our make up is a boost. thats a great point. Thank you for reading and adding your input x

  2. September 10, 2018 / 9:25 pm

    Love this post Kerry – honest and frank – just how I like it! And I know exactly what you mean about the invisible coat in shops – except if I were to walk into some push boutique I’d just get eyed suspiciously. They’d only have to take one look at me to know I didn’t belong there! 😂

    • kerrylifeandloves
      Author
      September 10, 2018 / 10:15 pm

      Ah thank you Lauretta, Im glad you enjoyed it. It was tongue in cheek but it is very real isnt it. As if they would chuck you out, they would think you that perhaps you were an eccentric millionaire or something hahah! Thanks for reading lovely xx

  3. September 11, 2018 / 12:16 am

    I bloody love you Kerry, never bending to fit the norms or what other people expect from you. I’m so over the looking insta perfect or constant stream of what’s cool and fashionable. I can’t keep up with all that sort of stuff. Omg I am shocked by the size 16 comment, I think a lot of people don’t realise what they’re saying can have an effect on other people. As always, I loved the post xx

    • kerrylifeandloves
      Author
      September 11, 2018 / 8:41 am

      Thank you so much Grace, thats so lovely of you. I have never conformed to what people want, I just do my own thing haha I think people are careless with their words, and lets face it, words can hurt far more than anything physical. Thank you so much for reading, I am so glad you enjoyed it xxx

      • September 12, 2018 / 8:40 pm

        Me too Kerry, I’ve always felt like a proper weirdo but who cares. It’s just fun to do your own thing and not worry about others. 100%, words can leave scars that will last so much longer than anything physical xxxx

  4. September 11, 2018 / 7:14 am

    I love this post. I have spent most of my adult years being overweight to varying degrees and not through lack of trying not to be. I have noticed when I am slimmer people are friendlier to you and when I’m on the bigger side they literally walk in to me or sit on me on the train. I think people are fundamentally good (well most people) I just think as a society we can be insensitive and mean.

    • kerrylifeandloves
      Author
      September 11, 2018 / 8:45 am

      Thank you, Im so glad you enjoyed it. I totally agree with you, I dont think people try to be nasty. I think its both lack of understanding of others situations, and also they judge without realising it. Its almost like its ok to pass comment on peoples weight. Its fair game. Im sorry that you too have experienced the invisibility cloak, but love that you get what Im on about. I sometimes think people may not get what goes on in my head haha! Thank you so much for reading and sharing your comment xxx

  5. September 11, 2018 / 1:04 pm

    I’ve felt like that when I go to fancy shops, offices, meeting certain people, managers etc and I’m not wearing particularly fancy clothes. Jeans, Docs, leather jacket/other casual jacket = they treat me like something the cat dragged in. Nice coat, dress, fancier shoes = I’m treated well and respectfully. That’s truly sad.

    • kerrylifeandloves
      Author
      September 11, 2018 / 2:08 pm

      It really is sad. Have these people not seen the film Pretty Woman! In all seriousness, we have come so far in equality, acceptance etc, yet we are judged on appearance. People automatically make an assumption. That is what I would dearly love to see change, but with the advocating of this attitude on social media, printed media, tv, anywhere really, I cant see it changing in my life time! We need to learn some lessons from dogs I reckon, they sniff a butt then just all get on with it! hahahaha Thanks for reading lovely xxx

  6. September 11, 2018 / 1:46 pm

    I’m over 50, size 10 now thanks to the diagnosis of an under active thyroid. One day when a bit larger but dressed smartly, so I thought, I went into Hobbs Leeds looking for a jacket for an interview, the (my age or more) assistant looked me up and down and said “ our more casual clothes are upstairs “ I’d like to say that I gave her a mouthful, or turned round and left. I stayed looking downstairs but felt completely humiliated. And Hobbs will never get my money even if a rich ,an gives me a MasterCard and … oh that’s pretty woman

    • kerrylifeandloves
      Author
      September 11, 2018 / 2:17 pm

      Ohhh I am so sorry that you were treated that way. What judgemental, presumptuous arses! I think we have sadly become a race that judges people on appearance. Isnt it sad? I remember seeing a documentary where a lady went out and about as herself, and they monitored how she was treated. They then put her in a fat suit and made her look a size 20, and again monitored how she was treated. The difference was shocking. I saw this when I was slimmer, and it really made me mindful of the way we treat people. Thank you so much for reading, I really appreciate you giving your input xxxx

  7. September 12, 2018 / 11:24 am

    Oh Kerry I love you!!! Your honesty and down to earth personality makes you and your blog so amazing. I hate the world we live in sometimes, we do live in a shallow world and I hate that you have 2 invisibility cloaks! I agree with you about growing on Instagram, I’ve felt pressure in the last few months to put pictures of myself in candid poses in order to grow, because photos of my makeup and flatlays doesn’t always seem interesting to people… Personally I think my invisibility cloak is when I don’t wear makeup, throughout the last year I have grown confidence to go out and do full days of work and errands without any makeup and I feel like I always get treated differently by customers etc when I’m not wearing make-up. Also can’t believe that girls Instagram story, how insensitive! Amazing post lovely. Clare xx | https://www.clayaa.com

    • September 12, 2018 / 12:53 pm

      Ohh thank you so much, that means a lot. My mum often tells me I’m a little too honest haha. In truth, it’s been almost like a social experiment seeing both sides of the age/size thing. It has certainly made me more aware of how someone could be feeling if they are a little outside of the “normal” box. Anything that helps you grow as a person can only be good can’t it. I’m thrilled that you are happy to go our make up free (your gorgeous) as that is great for you on a spiritual level (don’t mean to be all hippy about it, but it really is fab). Your showing yourself love by accepting yourself and that is a beautiful gift to yourself xxxx Thank you so much for reading, I really appreciate it x

  8. Maria
    September 12, 2018 / 12:59 pm

    I too wear the same two invisibility cloaks as you. At work in particular they barely acknowledge my existence in favour of younger, slimmer, attractive people. On the plus side they do recognise my ability and so my salary and bonuses are grear, it’s just the daily contact that is practically non-existent until they need something from me. As I have gotten older I have realised that I am more than happy with this approach, while other staff members worry constantly about their appearance and pay out extraordinary amounts of money for clothing, shoes, makeup, hair styles etc I just wear my comfy flat shoes and supermarket clothes. I am not materialistic at all (except for Christmas decorations which i never seen to have enough of so have to keep on buying) so I would find it tiresome if I had to worry about keeping up with the wanna be models in my workplace! When I was younger I used to try to keep up with them and would be disappointed that i never quite made the grade, age has been kind to me and left me at ease with the person I am with no hangup re my appearance or lack of attractiveness, happy in my own skin. Sometimes a barbed comment can prick my pride but it doesn’t affect me as much as it used to and I don’t choose to spend time with unkind people so it happens rarely. I have always been the person who roots for the underdog so I treat others who wear the invisibility cloaks with kindness and friendliness – I find they treat me better too. Loved reading your article, I am now going to think of myself as a superhero with a special skill haha 🙂 Xx

    • Jean
      September 12, 2018 / 2:53 pm

      Another great post Kerry. I wished I could say to you don’t be silly people are not like that but it’s true sometimes, I have witnessed it in shops, it makes me angry, unfortunately some people are too narrow minded. So I say to all those slim, perfectly groomed people, give out what you wish to receive back because if not, karma might bite you on the bum

      • kerrylifeandloves
        Author
        September 12, 2018 / 4:59 pm

        I do think that we can attract what we put out, so I agree with you. I would love to see a world where people dont judge each other on appearance. Sadly, we cant change the world but we can make sure that we give people due respect cant we, no matter who they are. Thank you for reading, I really appreciate it xx

    • kerrylifeandloves
      Author
      September 12, 2018 / 4:57 pm

      Maria, us cloak wearers are a pretty amazing bunch, with lots of knowledge and wisdom to share. That is just one of our super powers. We have earnt our stripes. I think the trouble with some young people, is that they think they will be young forever. Im sorry that you experience that in work, but am over the moon that you can see it for what it is. I do think that an acceptance and respect of ourselves comes with maturity, so we are able to be kind to ourselves. Like you say, it must be truly exhausting to always want to be like or better than anyone else. Sod that! I am so like you, I have always been the person to chat to the person on their own at a function or try to be inclusive of everyone. I know how it feels to be on the other side! I am absolutley thrilled to bits that you are seeing yourself as a superhero now, (tongue in cheek but you are pretty blooming special) and i think we need to start a revolution. Cloak wearers unite! haha Thank you so much for sharing your story with me, it really means a lot to me that we chat. Thank you. Keep being you xxxxxx

  9. September 16, 2018 / 12:44 pm

    This is interesting! I can’t say I know what it feels like but I’ve definitely experienced something similar when it comes to how dressed up I am that day or whether I have makeup on or not. You’ve made some great points here, it’s not something that is talked about nearly enough and I’d personally love to see more bloggers/youtubers of a more mature age range – younger viewers might actually learn something of value xx

    • kerrylifeandloves
      Author
      September 16, 2018 / 3:08 pm

      It seems like so many have felt they are treated differently when not wearing make up. I wonder if its us that feels different so we think people are being different? I question myself in this way. When Im not feeling so confident, am I more sensitive, is my perception slightly shifted. I would love more bloggers my age, but not fashion bloggers! I have seen many of them, in my age group. I think we have a lot to share lol thanks for reading x

  10. September 23, 2018 / 6:20 pm

    I love these posts!

    I had something similar – I was always under a size 12 – until a couple of years ago. I was taking some medication and one of the side effects was possible weight gain. I’m not taking the medication now, but I did gain a bit of weight, and I do think some people treat me differently because of it. I think it says more about them than it does about me, but it’s still kind of sad.

    Thing is though, I know how it feels to be right at the other end of the weight scale. I had an eating problem when I was a teenager and was very underweight. Cold all the time. Tired all the time. Felt pretty shit all of the time. So yeah I wish I hadn’t put on the extra weight, and am working to lose some of it, but the other end of the scale is much less fun and I never want to go there again!

    I have found some bloggers and YouTubers to follow now who are my age (mid 30s) and older. I think this is really important when looking at things like skincare. Because really, what does someone in their early 20s know about what someone in their late 30s is looking for in skincare? Brands need to get a bit smarter in this respect and make their “influencers” (I hate that word) reflect their customer base more.

    While we’re at it, disabled bloggers are pretty unrepresented too!

    Great post – I hope you’ll do more in this series because you always bring up some good points and things to think about! XX

    • kerrylifeandloves
      Author
      September 23, 2018 / 8:12 pm

      Ahh so you have seen all sides of the road!
      I’m glad you are feeling better health wise! It’s crazy how brands ignore the very demographic that they aim their products at. Madness! I think disabled bloggers are very under represented, you are so right. That also needs to change.
      I’m so glad you enjoy this series. It’s my favourite series to write, so I will always aim to carry on with these. I love getting us all thinking, and enjoy hearing everyone’s opinion. Thank you for reading lovely lady xx

      • September 24, 2018 / 2:32 pm

        You kind of inspired me too. I have a couple of more controversial opinion posts floating around in my brain. Sometimes I think a lot harder about things like that than the easier ones where you tell people about a great new product or a place that you’ve visited. But it’s in the opinion posts that readers really get to know you – and I think that’s important too. Keep it up! XX

        • kerrylifeandloves
          Author
          September 24, 2018 / 5:08 pm

          That is so good to hear! I love that it inspires you a little too. What a lovely thing for you to say, thank you! Have a wonderful week xxx

I love reading your comments x

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