I was having a rough time. And when I say rough, I mean ROUGH. I hated my body, didn't feel fulfilled at work, was eating my feelings, stressing about money.....you name it, I was feeling it.
That's the day I decided it was time for a boudoir shoot. I figured, if SOMEONE could see beauty in me, maybe I'd be able to see it too. Because at that moment, I wasn't feeling too pretty.
Fast forward to seeing the final images. I laughed, I cried, I blushed; I was astounded at how amazing I looked.
The only thing I didn't do was nitpick the things I didn't like about myself. For the first time in a long time I was looking at myself as a work of art.
That's why we do boudoir. It's about beauty. It's about empowerment. It's about honesty. It's about art. It's about YOU.
So do you need to lose those last few pounds? Wait until you're in better shape? Insert next excuse here?
GIRL, please. I promise you from experience, a boudoir shoot is one of the most empowering things I've ever done, even when I really WASN'T feeling myself.
Book the shoot, girl. You deserve it. <3
I've been doing a lot of searching lately for the "why" behind what I do. Because the "why" is important. And I think mine is two-fold.
Ok - the first of the "why's":
Having Larsen's Syndrome has been a unique challenge that I have always had to embrace, but something that I'm not super open about either. This isn't a dissertation on the condition, but for those of you who are unfamiliar with it, it's a condition that I've had 9 reconstructive surgeries to help correct.
In my insecurity, I always joke that they couldn't fix my face, but I can walk now, and while it typically garners a chuckle from the people that hear it, the phrase just belies my own true temperament towards how I feel about myself. I have always been physically different from those around me, and admittedly it's something that I probably notice more than others do these days. But it wasn't always the case.
Here's the second "why":
Because of the Larsen's Syndrome, I was bullied heavily throughout my scholastic career. Kids tormented me because I looked different. They called me names that sometimes still haunt me to this day when I hear them.
There was never a moment where I felt like I belonged, or any respite where I thought I could be comfortable in my own skin. My nose is flat. My fingers have oversized knuckles. My knees don't bend right, so I look funny when I run. And I was hounded by my peers relentlessly to the point of contemplating suicide a few times.
But when I picked up a camera, all of that seemed to change.
I could be a somebody. I could give others the peace that I've sought within myself for over 35 years. Even if it was just for a moment. Even if it was just for an hour. To see that light re-enter someone's eyes when they scream, "IS THAT ME?!?" when they see the back of the camera and then again when they see the final product delivered.
Have I come a long way since the days of my scholastic bullies? Yes. But I still have work to do. I still struggle to feel comfortable in my own skin the same way that you probably struggle to be in yours. But I'm determined to bring that beauty out in ways that you didn't know were possible, just like I'm having to teach myself that same thing every day.
If you've made it this far - that's my why. That's my overarching narrative. Whether you book with me or not, it's important to love yourself for who you are - physical flaws included. They are an interconnected portion of our story whether we like them or not, so for me - I'm done hiding. I'm embracing.