What makes you vulnerable, makes you beautiful.
- Brene Brown
These are shots from The Empowerment Self Love Photo Marathon hosted by the photographer duo Erin and Jamie of Hello Lovely. They hosted the photo shoot as a fundraiser in support of Dress For Success and in an empowered moment, I signed up, only to regret it as soon as I did. What possessed me to willingly sign up for a personal self-love photo session?
The fear was real. I am over 50 and carrying an extra 30 pounds of 15 year old baby weight. I tend to avoid photos and when I must be in a photo, I ensure that I am in between two people or in the back row. As soon as I booked the session, I went into panic mode. Maybe I could cancel? Maybe I could ask for a credit for a future shoot? Maybe I could re-gift it to someone? What would I wear? Did I need to wear sexy clothes? With every email response, Erin and Jamie warmly reassured me that it was going to be a positive, relaxing, safe and fun experience. I decided that since I hadn't shared with anyone that I had signed up, I would complete the shoot, file the photos and call it a day while supporting a worthwhile cause.
On the day of the shoot, as instructed, I set out with a few of my favourite articles of clothing: a flannel shirt, a cotton shirt and cashmere sweater. I was dreading the shoot but felt welcome as soon as I arrived. The mood was fun and relaxed. I enjoyed having my makeup done and off I went to face my fear.
My inner critic has always guided my life yet much to my surprise I was able to silence this critic and enjoyed the shoot. I was even more surprised, actually shocked, when I received my photos. Was that really me? I actually looked sexy, sultry and strong. Why don't I see myself this way? Why have I never seen myself this way? Is this what others see?
The experience, while terrifying, was a huge revelation for me towards self-love and acceptance. Initially, I felt shy sharing these images but my vulnerability has allowed me to tap into my inner strength. As a result, I honour the progress that I am making in my journey of self-acceptance and in connecting with my deepest and truest self. I am discovering my beauty, my self worth, my sexiness and learning to celebrate it.
I feel confident that my feelings resonates with many women. If these resonate with you, I invite you to take the leap and join us for your DARE TO BE VULNERABLE Photo Session. Silence that inner critic and have some fun!