Sunday Chronicles: Taking up Space

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In light of all the world events, protests, revolutions, and my wanting to be a better ally I’ve been thinking a lot about my voice. And how to best use it. The thing is: I’m not always comfortable speaking up or taking up space. I was raised to be “nice” and not “make trouble” and “please everyone”. But the fact is none of those things are really possible. Some trouble is good. I (and you) deserve to be heard. And nice isn’t always the best policy. So. I’m working on it. And while my thoughts here are from a few years ago, reflecting on how I can take up space this week helped me. Hope it helps you! XO RA

Sometimes topics come and hit you over the head, forcing you to pay attention to them. This week I was minding my own business, cruising the internet, when out of no where this article and this article kept popping up, on repeat. A sign? Maybe, maybe not; but when articles appear, I read them.

A note–I am one of those who have a hard time asking for the space I need (unless we are driving an then just try to sway into my lane–you have a horn coming). I believe in courtesy, compassion, and sharing-but a long line of waiting for others to recognize that I may need leg room/arm room/a seat has taught me that you have to take your space–others won’t give it to you. And yes, there are societal and gender issues at play; there are different types of space and different issues that surround each of them. I could write about them all but want you to not be reading till Monday! So, for today, let’s talk physical space–we can deal with other issues another day.

So space. We all need it– be it on a subway, an arm rest, on an airplane. So why do some of us have such a hard time asking for it? There are those who don’t–and yes, as a member of the former group I can be in awe, envy, and sometimes hate those who seem to take up all the space they need (and sometimes more) without a thought or care. Are those people inherently bad or selfish? I like to think not (yes, I could write about those who probably are). Some people just naturally take up space. I, personally, don’t–and it’s not that I don’t need it. I’m tall, I like to spread out as much as the next person, and know I deserve the sidewalk or public space as much as the next person. And it’s not that I don’t take space–it’s just that if others are taking up space (manspreaders, etc) or if the space is in debate (shared armrests), I tend to defer-not ask for space, let the other person have it.

So why? If I know I have a right to the space, why do I, and others like me, have a hard time asking for it? Maybe we expect people to notice what we need and give it to us–which has never worked for me. Maybe it’s years of training to be nice and not demand things–I’m a Southern woman, I know this. Maybe it’s a combination, maybe other issues come into play.  I don’t know.

I do know that I believe every single one of us deserves to take up all the space we need. And if people aren’t going to give it to us, we’re going to have to take it. Is this hard for me? Yes, but the good news is we can do hard things. So this week I’ve gone out of my way to take up the space I need. A guy at the movies had his legs spread wide, I willed myself to say “Excuse me” (not “I’m sorry”, another issue), and even though I had to say it twice, he moved. At the gym I stood my ground and held my space at the mirror while getting ready. Moon-landing accomplishments? No. But a start. This doesn’t mean my voice doesn’t shake sometimes, or I find it easy; but if other people are asking for the space they deserve, why shouldn’t I?

Here’s the secret guys, there is enough space for all of us. And if you aren’t getting what you need, you are going to have to ask for it. I’d love to know–is this something you struggle with? How do you deal with it?

Wishing us all a week of space and amazing shoes! XO RA

Sunday Chronicles: Summer Plans

My loves, I look forward to summer every year. And this year will be different. But different doesn’t always mean better or worse, just not the same. With that in mind I’m planning things to look forward to, from my kiddie pool in the backyard to a virtual tour of Paris, these are my ideas. I would love to know yours!

Wishing us all a week of different and amazing shoes!
Xo RA

Sunday Chronicles: Birthday

Investment Piece: Birthday

It’s a big weekend here at my house. My mom’s birthday. Mother’s Day (which can be a hard day for so many. If you’re hurting, if this day is painful, I’m wishing you peace). And today is my birthday! Things are a bit different this year. No big parties, which I’m very ok with. A little more introspection. But still a lot of champagne. While I can’t be with everyone I love today, I’m so grateful for all of my friends, family, and you!

This week I’m wishing us all peace, love, and amazing shoes! Xo RA

Sunday Chronicles: Me Time

Investment Piece: Sunday Chronicles

How crazy has it been for you? How are you feeling?

Over here there are good days and bad days. Ups and downs. One thing I’m needing? A day off. We’re at home, yes, but between the news, work, family, and all the things it feels like I go non-stop. So today? I’m taking me time. Maybe I’ll pamper myself- I need to do my roots and nails. Or maybe I’ll sleep. Or watch movies. But I’m giving myself permission to take a day for me.

If  you need the same, here’s your permission. We’ll meet up and compare notes!

 

Wishing us all a week of needs met and amazing shoes! XO RA

Happy Easter! Happy Passover!

Investment Piece: Happy Holidays

The holidays look a bit different this year. This is usually the space where I would wish you a spring holiday, no matter what you celebrate, full of love, togetherness, and peace. Love and peace are still available, but for our future togetherness we have to be apart right now. It’s hard. There are days that I’m full of fear and anxiety, I miss family and loved ones, I miss going places. I get scared for so much. You may be feeling that way too. I have no idea what’s to come, but I do believe that we are promised that we don’t ever have to be alone. In the new normal of FaceTime and Zoom, I wish you comfort and togetherness. I hope when you’re feeling alone you remember how we love and need you. I wish that our collective fears will be calmed. And, as spring and these holidays are a message of renewal, I wish you new beginnings.

To us coming out of our apartness to better normals and sweeter togetherness.
Xox RA

Sunday Chronicles: Connection

We’re entering week 3? 4? of isolation. I feel like I’m still dealing with, and adjusting to all the changes to my schedule, my moods, and my thoughts. It’s a rollercoaster. One thing that I kept thinking about this week- connections. There is so much pressure right now to be so productive and be in all sorts of contact with our loved ones and friends. Yet, I had a week where I needed some alone time. Ironic? Maybe. But how are you balancing connecting with friends, with yourself, and the community?

Let’s chat about it!

Wishing us all a week of comforting connection and amazing shoes! Xo RA

Sunday Chronicles: Rountines

I started the Sunday Chronicles section of the blog so that there was a space where we, as a community, could share and grow things that weren’t directly related to fashion. Now, that the world is a bit tipsy turvy, I wanted to open up this space as a place where we can connect, share our feelings, and get through this together. Last week I asked how you are doing. This week, I’m asking what coping mechanisms are getting you through this time. Share, and I can share with the group. Or email me (racheladelicia@investmentpiece.com). Tell me what’s going on. I’m thinking of you and wishing us all a week of comfort and amazing shoes.

Xo RA

Sunday Chronicles: Fear

Investment Piece: Sunday Chronicles: Fear

Loves, it’s tough out there right now. There’s a good chance that you, or someone you know, are scared and worried about the COVID-19 virus and its impacts on our lives. I’m a fashion blogger and this not a medical blog. Please trust the medical professionals, take precautions, wash your hands, be kind, and let’s take care of the most vulnerable in our herds.

That being said, when we’re scared it can be hard, fear makes us do crazy things. People are stocking up on things like soap and hand sanitizer. Companies asking employees to work from home. Huge events are being canceled. For the record, I’m a fan of us all being cautious. I would rather events be put on hold and people be safe rather than events happen and people get sick. I’m a fan of protecting the herd. But I also know that caution can be fear driven and not fact driven.

So, what do we do?

Loves, I’m not sure. Again, I push us all to heed caution and take the health officials recommendations seriously. To balance living our lives (which we should! Dress fabulously! Shop! Hang out safely! Tip well! Order in Chinese Food!) and taking this pandemic as seriously as we should (don’t go out unnecessarily, wash those hands! Avoid crowds! Stay home and binge watch!).And I don’t have the answers.

What am I doing? Trying to support the people I can- calling my elderly friends, checking in on family. I’m also attempting to shop from local and indie stores. Everytime you shop here I appreciate it, as a small business owner. I’m attempting to pay that forward, shopping small, local, being aware that not only our health but people’s livelihood might be on the line. Then I’m avoiding gatherings that aren’t 100% needed. Staying in, resting, taking care all sound good right now, so I’m leaning into that. I’m also assessing and reassessing with every new release of information, etc. I’m trying to balance it all, and like us all, doing my best not to let my fears dictate anything.

What I truly believe this is a time to be kind to each other. We need each other- to help, to keep each other safe, to work together. Let’s do that. Let’s be kind, offer the best of us. We may all be scared, but let’s act like our best selves. We may all be a little (or a lot) anxious (I am), but being kind may be the perfect rememdy to the fear we have right now.

Wishing us all a week of fearless kindness and amazing shoes!
Xo RA