I have hated my body for going on 20 years.
It wasn’t a full on hatred, it was a slow building of hatred… but in my line of work, I have always felt like such a hypocrite - so I hid that hatred away. I hid it behind snark and self-deprecating humor.
I had forgotten the magic that this body had created, and in secret… focused on the imperfections. I stopped allowing photographs of myself by those that I love. Essentially erasing myself from their history.
I have always been a fairly confident person, and I have never been shy or modest. I think that in some ways the constant feeling of hypocrisy helped fuel the fire of my depression. So, I made a promise to myself to not dim my light anymore, and to let myself love me - ALL of me, the messy me, the fat me, the scarred me.
And let me be the first to tell you, it isn’t easy. In fact its the hardest thing I have ever done. It has been my BIGGEST battle to date.
In a society, where a women’s worth is tied to her appearance, loving yourself in the skin you are in, IS THE ABSOLUTE HARDEST THING YOU WILL EVER DO! Everywhere we turn, we are told to look a certain way, to eat a certain way, to dress a certain way, to behave a certain way. It is exhausting, you can NEVER be the image that society “requires” of you. You will drive yourself crazy trying to live up to the expectations of who you “should” be.
I read a quote recently from the book “Untamed” by Glennon Doyle that really shook me to my core. Glennon is speaking to her daughter about disappointment. Glennon very firmly tells her daughter “Listen, every time you’re given the choice between disappointing someone else and disappointing yourself, your duty is to disappoint that someone else. Your job throughout your entire life, is to disappoint as many people as it takes to avoid disappointing yourself.”
By the time I had read this, I had already booked a Virtual Boudoir Session with the iconic Teri Ledgerwood. She is the creator and mastermind behind “Confident Curves”, “EveryBodies Education”, “Shake Shit up with Webcams”. She is my industry crush, lol. I had also already had my Virtual Session with Love, Ali - which broke me open emotionally and showed me that there is beauty in the mess. Its been an eventful month emotionally. The day of my shoot with Teri, I was terrified.
You see… Teri has a way of bringing out a side of her clients that they don’t often see. Strong, Empowered, Sexy, Confident… and for someone that is in that stage of hypocrisy, the notion of being any of those things is terrifying. I don’t want to be fake. I want to be 100% authentic. I WANT to be all of those things that Teri captures, brings out… but am I ready?
Sadly, the only way to find out the answer to that is to JUMP and just do the damn thing.
And so I did… and so I did…
Guess what? I was ready. I was Strong, I was Empowered, I was Sexy, I was Confident.
And guess what else? I am Strong, I am Empowered, I am sexy, I am Confident… and you can be too!