insecurity knocking…

A couple of weeks ago we had the pleasure of seeing a past bridesmaid turned into social media friend.  While we were chatting she mentioned how she was telling everyone at her table how wonderful of photography we do, that we were great to work with, was in love with her friend’s images – nothing but nice things.  She then mentioned that someone said “her husband is really great looking” and BOOM.  Instantly my insecurities bubbled up.  For sure the entire table was wondering what he was doing with me.  For sure they thought what was this gorgeous man doing with that ok looking girl.

Feeling insecure is something I am all too familiar with.  Growing up painfully shy I never felt worthy of anyone’s attention.  I can remember begging people inside of my head not to look at me because there was nothing special to see.  I was awkward, had no idea how to control my wavy hair and didn’t have the pretty face that all the other girls had.  Looking in the mirror and knowing, not thinking, I was ugly was reality for me.  Sure I had friends but I was always the “I’ll do whatever you guys want” of the group because why should anyone value my opinion.

That insecure little girl never felt worthy of a handsome husband, let alone being happy and madly in love with him.  Thankfully I grew out of my insane thought process but I do still have lack of confidence that keeps me from enjoying things that should be nothing but enjoyed.  Why couldn’t I just take the compliment about my husband and bask in it?  Why can’t I take all the times we have been told how great we look together and draw security from there?  Why can’t I just smile, feel pretty lucky to have such a handsome man and know that in his eyes I am just as attractive?

Blame can be put on everything from my childhood self esteem issues to truly noticing the signs of aging lately.  And to be completely honest it sometimes feels defeating to be married to a man with that mystical “gets better looking with age” George Clooney power.  But at the end of the day it all comes down to how much I want to like myself.  When I am deep in self loathing it holds me back from experiencing the joy that is mine to experience.  Sitting at a table for two in a lovely restaurant with Sticky is nothing but a waste when all I can think about is how my hair didn’t turn out or how the hostess gave Sticky the “why hello there” look.  This not only ruins my evening but his as well.  Spending one on one time together is crucial in a marriage, tossing it away so carelessly is shameful.

You may wonder why a girl who claims to be so insecure does weekly fashion posts which include many images of herself.  Presuming confidence by the way someone dresses is completely understandable.  Much like presuming someone who is always fabulously made up, has a jet-setting ig account or operates a successful business must have a good perception of themselves.   Fashion is, has and more than likely always will be the constant passion that instills confidence in me.  There are a lot of things about my physical appearance I am uncomfortable with but knowing how to dress helps me deal with those issues.  Being able to share my love for style here is an immeasurable release.  Sticky would be the first to tell you that many of our photo shoots are painful, especially when the blog first started.  Slowly but surely they have gotten better yet no matter how much I enjoy posting and sharing there’s always that nagging voice saying “who does she think she is?”.  He tells me “You’re a woman who loves fashion and wants to share it with others.  Who the hell care if anyone thinks differently?”.  And he is right.

Sticky and I are currently returning from a road trip.  He looks so great in the pilot’s seat with his shades on and sunlight dancing behind him.  Gosh he is such a good looking man but he is also a good man.  A good man who deserves a wife who cares about herself enough to allow him to care for her the way he wants.  We do make a fantastic couple inside and out.  I am missing parts of this amazing adventure with him and I need to stop.  Life is too short to worry about what other’s may think, especially when most of it is contrived in my head.  We are the only ones that truly know what we have, there’s nothing more important than that.


Rewind to “her husband is really great looking.”  Why yes, yes he is.




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26 Responses to insecurity knocking…

  1. Callie Russell says:

    Thank you for sharing… I was so emotional reading this. Though I am not shy and have never been I don’t and haven’t ever loved myself the way I should. Being married has really taught me so much about life, myself, and how the way I look at myself can affect our relationship. I really look at you and your work as such inspiration and encouragement that a beautiful girl from “tiny town” Ohio can dream big and succeed with her creativity. Following my design dreams I hope to be half the woman you are Brandy. Thank you
    <3 Callie

    • prettyplainjanes says:

      Hi Callie! There is so much merit in the saying “no one can love you until you love yourself.” Our wonderful husbands see us for who we really are and we owe it to them to try to see that same beauty as well. Never ever stop dreaming and creating. It fuels your soul and will only teach you more about yourself. You deserve the world pretty girl! xo, brandy j

  2. Wendy Riehle says:

    Raw and real. Nothing but admiration for you. Beautiful inside and out. Xxo

    • prettyplainjanes says:

      Hi Wendy! Thank you so much for all your kind words and support. It truly means so much! xo, brandy j

  3. Mary Heinrichs says:

    Brandy, Brandy, time goes way faster than you can imagine. Eventually you accept your own flaws and realize everyone has things that they would love to change. Enjoy your youth and love yourself. Wear your high heels, before your feet hurt and you hate to go shoe shopping. Wear your thongs, before you know it, you will be looking for muffin top panties. Stop worrying about what people think about you, in the long run it doesn’t matter. Enjoy your hubby, he loves you for you and time or crows feet will not change that. I think the two of you are perfectly perfect! Love life with a passion and life will love you. You are a strong and empowered woman. That my dear is just the type of woman your man loves! Trust me, 30 years from now, you are going to ask yourself, what the heck did I not like about my body. You are both beautiful people inside and out!!

    • prettyplainjanes says:

      Hi Mary! Thanks so much for this comment. I hope to live each decade without regret and wishing to relive another. My 20s were great but no one could pay me to go back – I like where I am now so much better. Aging is a gift not to take for granted, even if wrinkles are involved. Your beauty radiates from within, it is undeniable. You could not have taught your own beauties better. Love, Brandy J

  4. Becky says:

    If YOU are insecure…I’m screwed. You are tall, thin, beautiful and talented. What about us who are average!? 🙂

    I wish you could see how much you have going for you. You have to see it first…or you can’t enjoy the fact that others see it too.

    • prettyplainjanes says:

      Hi Becky! Thanks so much for your kind words. You cannot be more right. Loving ourselves first is the only way to truly enjoy life and love others. We are all works in progress, that’s for sure! xo, brandy j

  5. Frank DiMeo says:

    Hi Brandy, Okay first off…I absolutely love this image of you and Sticky. Secondly, I have to admit that I have always been a little jealous of Garrett getting to be your photographer for your wedding and when he first started out. Now you know I love Garrett, but I always thought he was incredibly fortunate to have such an amazingly beautiful couple to work with. You are one of the most beautiful woman I know and you are married to one of the most gorgeous guys I know. I love your posts on here and I love to follow what you are doing because you are gorgeous, and the images are always fun. I look forward to your Christmas cards because I can’t wait to see what you, Sticky, and Garrett have come up with. It always amazes me when I hear a woman who I think is outrageously beautiful talk like this. It is has so much to do with the american society. Have you seen this image I created in college, and what I wrote about it? I think it would hit home for you and that you would really like it. YOU are an amazing person! Loved and adored by many, especially your husband. 🙂

  6. Amanda Abelita says:

    Oh man…I feel horrible I made you feel that way. 🙁 You are so stunning inside and out! I would do anything to have your sense of style! Yes, your hubby is good looking but girl you are one HOT MAMA!
    PS: The best part about watching you guys work together is that you can feel the love Sticky has for you! We are lucky ladies to have such to TRUE LOVE from our hubbies! It was so nice seeing you guys and we are all so excited to see Megan’s pictures!

    • prettyplainjanes says:

      Hi Amanda! Oh I was waiting for you to comment and I am SO GLAD you did! You have NOTHING to apologize for. This was an important post for me to write! I have struggled with this my entire life and our conversation certainly did not bring up new issues.

      Thank you for always being such a comforting supporter and friend to Sticky and I. Getting to know people like you through what we do is one of the best benefits of our career. You my dear are a beauty inside and out. I am grateful we have met. xo, brandy j

  7. Kimberly says:

    Brandy, Great Article! You two are Both Beautiful People inside and out! In today society it does seem like image is what everyone focuses on. Dealing with a teenage daughter and coaching many teenagers I see it everyday, “I’m I pretty enough for that boy,” “I’m I skinny,” “I’m I wearing the right cloths” and so on.. It is so sad and heartbreaking to hear! Unfortunately it doesn’t always change & I wish I had the answers for them! I don’t want to say its good to hear your struggles but it is good to hear I’m not Crazy and not the only woman who still struggles with insecurity! I must say I have gotten better over the years to let things go and realize My husband Love me for Me! Men are so much better at not judging things or let the littlest things bother them. One thing is for sure… It’s hard to be a Woman!! Thank you for Opening up and sharing your stories:) You are Fabulous, Beautiful, & a Positive Rolemodel to all!!

    • prettyplainjanes says:

      Hi Kim! Thanks so much for your kind words. It is hard in so many ways to be a women – we beat ourselves up so much more than men do (at least it seems that way). So many times admiration turns to jealousy, inspiration turns to comparison. Hopefully we can instill healthy self esteems into our girls. We know they are beauties inside and out and unfortunately we know too well the struggle it takes to accept and believe that. You are a beautiful mother and role model to your ladies. Thanks again Kim! xo, brandy j

  8. What a great read! Thanks for sharing.
    If the above picture is of you and your husband……WHAT!? You are gorgeous!

  9. Unfortunately I know all to familiar how this feels. I had someone once say to me “how did you get him looking like that?”. Everyone always fawns over my husband but they say he has nothing but eyes for me. So he sees something in me that I don’t and that’s hard but I am learning to love myself.

    • prettyplainjanes says:

      Hi Missy! I am so sad to hear that someone said such cruel words to you. It is such a double edge sword because on one hand I love how handsome my man is and on the other it ignites my insecurity. There is a reason they chose us and we need to embrace that. How lucky are we to have loyal and gorgeous men – let’s agree that they are lucky too. 🙂 – brandy j

  10. I am new to your blog, thanks to a friend. This is a well written post, thank you. I shared this on my Facebook, and hope you do not mind. You are a beautiful woman, and it is sad to see you thinking anything but. And yet, I get it. Sadly, though, I wish more people focused on the whole person, and in turn, then they could see each individual person’s beauty, through and through. I have been the victim, so to speak, of very unkind words about my looks. And as much as I tell myself that it is not true, and is bull crap coming from an unkind person, it sticks. And that sucks. But I believe if we all continue to work to be kind and lift each other up, we will start to see our own beauty a little bit more.

    • prettyplainjanes says:

      Hi Sindea! I am so sorry and saddened to hear you have been a victim of ugly words. Coldness generally comes from an insecure heart – I hope you can look inside yourself and know that their words are empty and a reflection of their own struggles. Beauty truly does radiate within. Those that embrace that are the most gorgeous people I know. Thanks for reading and sharing beautiful Sindea! 🙂 – brandy j

  11. megan beth says:

    sweet, sweet lady…if only you could see the amazing beauty that we all see on the outside that you hold, in addition to the beautiful soul that you possess. we all struggle with insecurities (i have the same ones) but as difficult as it may be, we need to focus on who we are on the inside and that light will radiate out (ha–or so i’ve heard.) and for the record, when you posted that insta of you and sticky in your hats, after the gym, I was so jealous of how gorgeous you looked “made-under.” i don’t look half that good on a regular day, let alone after the gym and in a hat! xoxo

    • prettyplainjanes says:

      Oh sweet Megan! Thanks so much for your confidence boosters. Your comments always warm my heart. You my dear are one drop dead gorgeous woman with an incredibly sweet soul. Creative, talented and beauty – you certainly have the complete package. If only we could see ourselves the way others do, that must be the key. We can work on that together. 🙂 xo, brandy j

  12. It’s so incredibly refreshing to hear I’m not the only person whose brain takes things to another level that no one else ever goes to. Sometimes I swear I’m crazy 😉 Always remember that ou, Lady, are one of the sweetest, most genuine and stunningly beautiful people out there. It’s such a pleasure calling you a friend!! You are truly an inspiration!

    • prettyplainjanes says:

      Thank you sweet sweet friend! Gosh my path has lead me to some creative and beautiful people – you are not an exception. We both have our crazy moments I am sure, nice to remind ourselves we are not alone. xo, brandy j

  13. Mike says:

    I just had to leave a comment after reading this….
    I have found that every woman is beautiful in her own way and that in the overwhelming majority of cases the girls people classify as the ‘plain janes’ are in fact far more attractive then the ‘beauty queens’. I never had any trouble dating when I was younger and almost always chose the ‘plain jane’ because she was far and away sexier and prettier than anyone gave her credit for. In fact I married a ‘plain jane’ and I am convinced 100% in my mind, heart and soul she is the most gorgeous woman on the planet and we have been blissfully married 18 years and I tell her every day how gorgeous she is.
    So all you women who are insecure and classify yourself as the ‘plain jane’ don’t give it a second thought! The right man will love you and make you his world!
    In closing, if the pic above is of the author and her husband….I’m looking at it and I hope she knows how incredibly pretty she really is! You are gorgeous! And yes, you two do look great together!

  14. Erica Stover says:

    Great post….something that speaks to us all. Thanks for sharing!

  15. Sarah L says:

    Wow — I just stumbled upon this blog and this specific post. I can so painfully relate it’s as if you were in my head. You did my wedding pictures and you could probably read my insecuriities as if it were an open book!
    Your words ring true for so many of us and there are no truer words than the realization that life is short and we need to let these feelings go in order to enjoy what we are blessed to have.
    Great and very informative blog!! I will keep reading! 🙂