Being in front of the camera is hard for a lot of us. For many reasons really. It is difficult for us to see ourselves and feel good about what we see. It could be an insecurity instilled into us as a child, or maybe because we cannot get beyond what society has told us we "should be" in their cookie cutter standard, or maybe it is the weight we have gained as we grew older or since we have had children. Whatever the lie is that you are believing, I am here to help you stop listening to it! Because you are beautiful!! Yes, you!! Whoever you are reading this blog, I am speaking to you!! YOU are beautiful in your own unique ways.
No matter where you are in this journey of life, or what you have been believing about yourself, stop believing the lies and start finding the truth. Now, hear me out....
I am going to be pretty transparent and real with you all today and be extremely brave throwing all this out there for the whole internet to read. But in hopes of building some trust, I am going to share some pretty personal struggles I have myself. You see, I have been in a pretty dark place lately. I am the heaviest I have ever been (60lbs over weight), struggling with more anxiety than anyone would ever want to, and seemingly unable to pull myself from a rut of not living the way I want to be living. But last week a piece of me was changed. I was able to find a piece that I could love in this moment of this difficult time of my life. You see, last week I was blessed with a photo session and the results helped me to see myself not the way I usually do, but the way I believe my husband, son, family and most importantly how my Heavenly Father sees me. I am not really sure how to explain that to you except to say that I felt beautiful, and felt good about myself for the first time in a long time. And even though I am not any closer to being where I want to be and how I want to be living, I was able to find a bit of love for myself, right in the midst of the journey that I am struggling through. I was able to embrace myself as I am right now, right where I am at, far from where I want to be, but still embrace the me I am today. I think there is some healing in that. And I want to help others experience it too.
As I was processing all of this, I found an article about why women need and want to feel beautiful, and part of it stated that "We, as women, all share equal responsibility to help each other heal this giant societal wound. We can support each other by recognizing and verbalizing the beauty we see in each other and by practicing collaboration instead of buying into competition. We help heal this wound by loving ourselves just enough to continue our inner exploration in order to find our authentic self so our sense of beauty and worth becomes unshakeable." These are more than words to me, in fact I am tearing up as I read them again. This, to me, is my Creator asking me to step out and help make a change in the only way I know how I can help. So, here I am, attempting to do just that.
Below you will see my favorite images from the session I was blessed with. They are done by Miss Danielle Dupey, who is an incredibly
talented Spokane Photographer. She and I took some time to photograph each other and I thought I would share my favorites from both sessions
with you today. Here are the ones Danielle took of me. If you think for a minute I was completely comfortable in front of the camera, think
again. In fact I told her going into the session that I will not like them, and there really is no use in taking them. But, I was wrong!!
I love them. Even though I am "fat", and "my butt is huge". She made me feel beautiful again for the first time in a long time.
And the ones I did of Danielle....
Please understand me, this is not about fueling an unhealthy vanity. It's about celebrating who we are - right where we are.My prayer is that you do not look at these images and say, "yeah, but.... she is just naturally beautiful, or she is tiny, or she is so photogenic, etc" Because then we fall into comparing ourselves to others and it closes the door to being able to embracing who you are. It is not about what "they are" but about allowing yourself to see beauty in you!!
So, I have decided it is time to step out and do my part. I am beginning a personal project that I have entitled "EMBRACE" and it is all about helping you to find a piece of yourself you can love and feel good about. These sessions will be available to you in June, but until then you will be seeing some more of these types of sessions here on my blog, so stay tuned and get inspired. It is time to stop comparing ourselves and to " find our authentic selves so our sense of beauty and worth can become unshakeable." Let's do this!! If not for any other reason than to look back a year from now and see how far we have come. Please, I am begging you, do not wait until you "Lose the weight", "Meet your goals", "feel good enough", etc. I truly believe that though those goals are valuable, so are you just the way you are!
Capture who you are today, and embrace it.
Will you join me?