• Valérie Gillet

Wear the damn dress



Today I decided to wear a flowery dress that I bought years ago but felt was too girly and tight for my taste and curvy figure.


What does it have to do with LinkedIn and my work?


When Covid locked us all up in our homes with our jobs, our kids and our anxieties, I thought long and hard about what I wanted to do with my life.


You see, when I was 39, I took the decision not to look any longer for Mr Right and to have another child on my own. In Belgium, MAP is open to anyone, including single women. So I went to a hospital in Brussels, ready to argue my case, see a bunch of therapists, have my body tested and poked for one or two years before I could maybe conceive.


That's when luck struck. My doctor decided to have a go at old-school insemination without any other kind of treatment. Just to see what would happen. I had been pregnant before quite easily, my odds were not good but not too bad for a 39-year-old woman, and she wanted to avoid any unnecessary medical procedures.


I got pregnant on the first try, exactly one month after deciding to take the plunge.


So there I was a year and a half later, locked down in my apartment with my 9-month-old miracle baby and my 13-year-old hyperkinetic teenage daughter.


I had to stop working altogether. I took all the government types of aid I could get. I actually thought I wouldn't make it. I spent evenings crying sitting on my kitchen floor.


Then I created a pro website in two languages from scratch. Then I started writing a blog.


After that, I took a certificate in digital marketing, one in legal translation and one in audio description. Then I took one ayurvedic massage course and went back to yoga and dancing as soon as I could.


Then I started to advertise myself as a copywriter as well as a translator.


New clients arrived and old clients came back.


Last year I decided to start a 2-year-training in professional coaching.


Because I realised that every time I take risks and try something out of my comfort zone, it ALWAYS pays off.


So today I decided to wear the damn flowery dress. If I can have a baby on my own, stand on my head, throw my leg up to my ear, do a proper running man, have my whole back tattooed and go on a solo trip to Mexico, I can be a proud 43-year-old plus-size woman who dons her tight dresses without apologising for the cookies she ate last night.


Wear. The. Damn. Dress.


Take the damn risks.


It will pay off.

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