Ever since I saw Julie & Julia, I’ve been shouting out random two-syllable words like CUPCAKE and BUSHTIT in a voice that somewhat resembles that of Julia Child. It’s not that I’m trying to mimic her distinctive diction – it just feels good. No, wait – let me be completely honest here – it feels GREAT! The reason behind this uncharacteristic disruptive behaviour is that I am finally finding my voice.
After seeing The September Issue, R. J. Cutler’s documentary that chronicles the production of Vogue’s biggest, fattest issue ever, I think that Anna Wintour may need to look for her voice, too. Judging from the way people around her react when she moves a finger or lifts an eyebrow, it’s clear that she doesn’t really need to speak to convey her thoughts. But watching her in this film, I could almost ‘see’ steel hoops encasing her torso and her throat, and I wanted to cry out, “Break free, Anna! Let it go!”
Maybe Anna’s reserve can be attributed to the cameras that followed her around for 8-1/2 months. And for all I know, she’s a veritable chatterbox at home. But somehow I doubt it. Years ago when I worked in the public relations department at Tiffany & Co., I helped Anna pick out jewelry and accessories for her fashion spreads in New York magazine. She didn’t say much back then, either, and from her demeanor, I just assumed she was shy.
I don’t know what’s behind those sunglasses, but I feel Anna’s pain. Until recently, I didn’t talk unless it was absolutely necessary. I know my friends would discount that statement, but that’s how it felt to me. When faced with the opportunity to voice an opinion or to recount a story, I chose to remain silent. The trouble with holding back is that unexpressed thoughts and feelings get stuck in our bodies and they can manifest in illness.
According to John C. Pierrakos, M. D., author of Core Energetics: Developing the Capacity to Love and Heal, “The constrictions of energy are not isolated dysfunctions. They are blocks of stultified energy that trammel the physical body in skeletomuscular rigidities, and also disrupt the higher planes of energy, thus affecting mental attitudes.”
So, as I go about my day loudly repeating nonsensical two-syllable words and phrases, I’m thinking of Julia who was filled with joie de vivre and was so unabashedly herself. And I’m thinking of Anna with her perfectly coiffed blonde bob and her hands in her lap just so, hoping that my perception of her rigid, good-little-girl demeanor is just a reminder of the work I have yet to do.