Monday, November 11, 2013

Plus London 3 - Day 2 - Community Day Thoughts

Hello everyone!
So now that I have posted tons of exciting photos, I wanted to talk about the 2nd day of Plus London 3.  Sunday was Community Day and in my opinion it was the day that we needed most and lot of people lost sight of this.
Community Day started with a panel discussion on confidence and sexuality with 3 speakers, Dr Charlotte Cooper, Dr Caroline Walters and Gina Warren.  I don't talk a lot about these things on here but my background and degree is actually in Gender and Women's studies, and this discussion was so interesting and good to hear.  I know there was a very mixed reaction to this part of the event, with a lot of people not showing up for a number of reasons. I don't blame anyone for not coming and I certainly am not looking any explanations, I'm only writing this because I want to share an experience with you.
When I went to university sometime ago, I had no idea what I wanted to study, but was dead set on getting a degree in something. During my first year, I made friends from all different walks of life, and by chance, several of them volunteered at our local campus Women's Center. I jumped on board straight away and began to volunteer. The Women's Center offered free childcare, community meals, classes on any number of subjects and skills, as well as a safe space for women and men to come, read and meet others. It was here that I had my first real taste of what it felt like to be part of a community that cares, goes above and beyond for others and looks to making the world a better place. It was then that I decided to study Gender and Women's Studies and see how we function through gender in society.
Although over the years since I left university, I have had that feeling again here and there, I felt it come back to me on Community Day at PL3. Here we were, all sitting in a room, not afraid to discuss our bodies, sexuality and to give and take skills and experiences from each other. This community is what it's really all about.
I really feel that for plus size women, bloggers or not, we need to find comfort and confidence in ourselves as women before we go looking for big companies to offer it to us. I think it's easy for everyone to get caught up in the fashion and frills and the promise of some kind of fame or recognition but at the end of the day, no matter how amazing you feel in one outfit, it's about feeling good with or without the outfit and this is something that clothing companies can't teach or give us.
Whenever I think that I have lost sight of this, I remind myself that clothing is the icing on the cake that is my body. It enhances the already beautiful.
Sunday was about getting together, talking and sharing our experiences and of course having a great time.
I'm excited that we are changing fashion and pushing companies to make room for our bodies but let's not forget about the human connection and being part of something bigger.
It was so lovely to meet so many of you on both days and I look forward to seeing all again soon! Get in touch with me whenever - I would love to hear from you!

Coming Up (in true blogger fashion) - What I wore to PL3 Community day!

XXToodalooKatie
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