Boudoir Reflections

I’m a big believer that if you want to make a change, you have to push yourself outside your comfort zone. Wanting change means that you want something different than what you have right now. But you’ll never get anything different unless you do something different.

For me, doing something different began three months ago when a Groupon for a Boudoir Photography Session landed in my inbox.

“No bloody way,” I told myself as I instantly thought of all my body issues. Then I paused.

How I feel about my body is one of the things I want to change about myself. So in spite of my fear and self-loathing, I decided to purchase it.

As usual, I put WAY too much thought into this activity. And WAY too much money. The process of prepping for my photo shoot was long and drawn out (Part 1, Part 2, Freak Out, Boudoir 1, Boudoir 2, Boudoir 3, Boudoir 4, Boudoir 5, Boudoir 6).  But it was also a lot of fun.

I loved looking at other women’s boudoir photos.  I loved shopping for lingerie, jewelry, and shoes.  It was fun to check out hair and makeup on Pinterest.

But all the time, I kept wondering if I was going to chicken out.  Could I go through with it?  Had I not invested so much money in this activity, I might have skipped out on it.  But I was financially committed, and that was good enough for me.

I learned a lot about myself during my photo shoot.  To begin with, I was very good at asking for what I wanted.  I’d done my research, I knew what I wanted.  Even standing in a room with naught but my underwear on, I was able to tell the photographer EXACTLY what I expected.  Kudos to me.

I also discovered that it’s okay to do it your own way.  You don’t have to do it the way others do it.  When I first started researching boudoir poses on Pinterest, it seemed every woman was a size 2 wearing a thong and a push up bra with thigh-highs, sky-high hair, and heavy makeup.  That wasn’t me.  I wanted to be dressed down and ready for bed.  And that’s how I posed.  Yes, it made for a lot of nudity but I enjoyed taking it off for the camera.

Not surprisingly, I got in touch with my sexy side.  Now granted, she’s not that far away at any given time, but for my photo shoot, my inner vixen came out in full force.  I used to avoid looking at my body in the mirror, and during the photo shoot, I stared at my body in the mirror.  Definitely bodacious!  Now I’m not saying I’ve been cured of my body dysmorphia, but I can say I take it all with a grain of salt now.

My final lesson was a lesson in limits.  I learned that a self-limiting belief is only limiting until you LET IT GO.  The old story I told myself was that I don’t look good naked – my legs are too thick, my butt is too big, and my stomach is too soft.  I have constantly restricted my clothes and my activities in order to “hide” these flaws.  But there I was at my boudoir photo shoot, putting them all on display for the camera.  Suddenly, those “thick” legs felt strong and powerful.  My “big” butt looked appealing, and my “soft” stomach felt womanly.  I felt gloriously sensual, sexy, and all-woman.

THIS IS THE STORY I SHOULD BE TELLING MYSELF, NOT THE OLD STORY.

So my parting words of advice to all the ladies out there are:  Book your own boudoir session.  You won’t regret it.

And also?  If I can get naked and post pictures to the internet, then you can definitely take whatever that first step is toward changing your own story.

Boudoir Reflections

I’m a big believer that if you want to make a change, you have to push yourself outside your comfort zone. Wanting change means that you want something different than what you have right now. But you’ll never get anything different unless you do something different.

For me, doing something different began three months ago when a Groupon for a Boudoir Photography Session landed in my inbox.

“No bloody way,” I told myself as I instantly thought of all my body issues. Then I paused.

How I feel about my body is one of the things I want to change about myself. So in spite of my fear and self-loathing, I decided to purchase it.

As usual, I put WAY too much thought into this activity. And WAY too much money. The process of prepping for my photo shoot was long and drawn out (Part 1, Part 2, Freak Out, Boudoir 1, Boudoir 2, Boudoir 3, Boudoir 4, Boudoir 5, Boudoir 6).  But it was also a lot of fun.

I loved looking at other women’s boudoir photos.  I loved shopping for lingerie, jewelry, and shoes.  It was fun to check out hair and makeup on Pinterest.

But all the time, I kept wondering if I was going to chicken out.  Could I go through with it?  Had I not invested so much money in this activity, I might have skipped out on it.  But I was financially committed, and that was good enough for me.

I learned a lot about myself during my photo shoot.  To begin with, I was very good at asking for what I wanted.  I’d done my research, I knew what I wanted.  Even standing in a room with naught but my underwear on, I was able to tell the photographer EXACTLY what I expected.  Kudos to me.

I also discovered that it’s okay to do it your own way.  You don’t have to do it the way others do it.  When I first started researching boudoir poses on Pinterest, it seemed every woman was a size 2 wearing a thong and a push up bra with thigh-highs, sky-high hair, and heavy makeup.  That wasn’t me.  I wanted to be dressed down and ready for bed.  And that’s how I posed.  Yes, it made for a lot of nudity but I enjoyed taking it off for the camera.

Not surprisingly, I got in touch with my sexy side.  Now granted, she’s not that far away at any given time, but for my photo shoot, my inner vixen came out in full force.  I used to avoid looking at my body in the mirror, and during the photo shoot, I stared at my body in the mirror.  Definitely bodacious!  Now I’m not saying I’ve been cured of my body dysmorphia, but I can say I take it all with a grain of salt now.

My final lesson was a lesson in limits.  I learned that a self-limiting belief is only limiting until you LET IT GO.  The old story I told myself was that I don’t look good naked – my legs are too thick, my butt is too big, and my stomach is too soft.  I have constantly restricted my clothes and my activities in order to “hide” these flaws.  But there I was at my boudoir photo shoot, putting them all on display for the camera.  Suddenly, those “thick” legs felt strong and powerful.  My “big” butt looked appealing, and my “soft” stomach felt womanly.  I felt gloriously sensual, sexy, and all-woman.

THIS IS THE STORY I SHOULD BE TELLING MYSELF, NOT THE OLD STORY.

So my parting words of advice to all the ladies out there are:  Book your own boudoir session.  You won’t regret it.

And also?  If I can get naked and post pictures to the internet, then you can definitely take whatever that first step is toward changing your own story.

Chicken

SharkTricksThere are at least two things I want to do before I depart this earth.

One is to take an $800 dive with great white sharks. In a cage, silly. I’m no dummy.

The other is to go on a $200 hot air balloon ride.

Now, I’m not adverse to a little danger in my adventure activities. After all, I did run with the bulls (literally) and raced stock cars in 2014.

And I’ve jumped out of an airplane at 12,000 feet.

All very daring activities.

But for some reason, the hot air ballooning and the shark diving make me pause for a second and not click on the “BUY” button.

It’s because I’m chicken.

I picture the cage tether snapping and being faced with the decision to either sink into the dark abyss of the waters of the Farallons never to be seen again –OR- having to escape the cage and swim with the sharks, literally. I am a child of JAWS afterall, these are totally plausible scenarios in my mind.

Or with the hot air balloon, I picture my already airsick stomach heaving and hoing as I float up into the atmosphere only to watch in horror as the balloon catches on fire and I go plummeting toward the earth.

Has anyone seen the Hindenberg?

Pause for a moment.hindenburg

I’m going to do them because I realize that until I confront these fears, they will own me. And living in my comfort zone is stagnation, not growth.

They will make great stories to tell my grandchildren someday.

I’ll probably do the hot air balloon ride first. After taking a bunch of Ativan. And washing them down with a bottle of champagne.

Because that’s how I roll.

Outside my Comfort Zone

It’s no secret I want to dive with Great White Sharks.

In a cage, of course.

What Is a secret is my intense fear of drowning.

You’d think that I, being surrounded by Great White Sharks, would be afraid of all those razor sharp teeth and their prehistoric predatory skills.

But no, you’d be wrong.

What I’m truly afraid of is that the tether from the boat to the cage snapping and me sinking into the dark abyss that lies in Monterey Bay, just like Richard Dreyfuss did in “Jaws.” I’d be faced with the decision to drown or take my chances with the sharks.

Oh, I’d take my chances with the sharks, but that brings up a second fear of mine – SHARKS!

Sharks have rows of razor sharp teeth and hunting skills honed over the millennia.

I’ve heard it said that all the magic happens outside your comfort zone and I have to agree.

Great White Shark diving is the epitome of being outside my comfort zone.

Way outside.