Hi Boudie Babes! Just a little warning that this post mentions eating disorders/body dysmorphia:

I'm going to be a bit vulnerable here and just say that I've always struggled with body positivity. I'm a big girl and I know that. I don't fit on rides at Cedar Point or Universal. I've been kicked off and been super embarrassed in front of everyone. Ever wonder why I love Disney? Because I fit on every single ride & the one time I didn't they handled it very quietly and gave me free fastpasses for ANY ride I wanted in the parks. I hated shopping for clothes with my friends when younger because 95% of the time I couldn't find anything at Hollister or Aéropostale. I never danced at my prom because I was told I wouldn't look good while dancing. Literally, I sat in a chair the entire night in my princess-y prom dress. In middle school I had friends suggest I should stop eating to lose weight. I tried, but could never sneak it around my parents (something I'm grateful for looking back). The same middle school friends judged me for not wearing makeup and pinned me down to tweeze my eyebrows to look cooler. Funny side story about that, they ended up shaving one of my eyebrows off with an electric razor. Wanna know what peak awkwardness was? Middle school me with one eyebrow! It's ok to laugh about that- my mom & I joke about it a lot actually.

Even now as an adult, I struggle with my mindset some days. I was in a good routine where I worked out & drank a green smoothie 5 days a week. I felt good, but I never lost any weight- and to me that was ok because I felt good. Then I got hit with covid and I've been down ever since. Then to top it off, I went to the doctor (because I am struggling with long covid and I just can't do the workouts like I used to plus was scared I had lung damage) and he told me I needed weight loss surgery. SURGERY?! It was so out of left field and not related to my covid issues at all, I left in tears. It was confirmed by literally every other doctor I asked that that was way too extreme for me. And also, my lungs are fine. I just need to honor my body where I'm at right now according to other doctors. And I think that's okay. In fact, the weekend of July 4th I spent in bed binging Netflix while my fiancé went up north with friends. It was great to reset & be off social media.

I don't feel shame anymore for being bigger. Honestly, I just feel disappointed that we live in a world where women are expected to be stick thin but also have curves. My body has carried me through a lot. It protected me through family trauma. It's hiked 12 miles a day every day I'm at Disney. It's kept me safe from literally every disease. It's hiked a mountain in Arizona & a glacier in Alaska. It's seen many girls nights with Oreos & pastas & wine. It's been to concerts and danced the night away. It's been the best snuggle buddy to our 3 year old niece (who often still falls asleep while snuggling on my lap). I think it's time that we as a society honor our bodies and that's what drove me to boudoir.

Back at the beginning of 2023 I had booked a session for myself to get some photos done. I was at an all time confidence high and was like "hell yeah, I'm doing this for me". Well my experience wasn't the best. The poses didn't really flatter me. I had to completely strip naked in front of my photographer without knowing her in order to change into my lingerie. I was wearing a ton of makeup which is just opposite of what I do. Plus, when I got the actual photos back I felt terrible. My face seemed orange-either bad editing or makeup, I'm not sure. Probably both. There's random pieces of grass and dirt on my body that would have been a breeze to edit out (the session was at the photographer's studio out in the country). Plus my feet were SO dirty in the photos from her floor! I get having a barn studio, but c'mon I had JUST showered. My self confidence was quickly wrecked & it took time to rebuild it.

As wrecked as I was, it actually fueled me to want to shoot boudoir. I was determined to design a better client experience. One with communication in place, a safe place to change, & good music with snacks. Good music is very important. Snacks are also very important. I love dancing in my underwear. That feels weird to write on the internet but it's true. I also really wanted to make a difference. I don't want women to feel ashamed anymore, I just want to celebrate us. Boudoir is for everyone- no matter your size.

So, all of that being said- I had my first boudoir shoot back in June and I am still on a high from the experience. I have a photographer friend, Rachel, who let me shadow her so I could see what the client experience was like & how she structures the session. It was such a positive experience for all of us. We played Backstreet Boys & Destiny's Child. We sang & danced. We lifted each other up & it was beautiful. It makes me so excited to jump into this new niche.

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Some Little Notes:

-These photos were taken at Rachel's studio in Bay City- a beautiful boho dream near the bay. I wish she wasn't so far, the studio is 1.5 hours from me. Her business is called Two Birds One Stone- her husband is a DJ so they do weddings together. How cute is that?! We're shooting a wedding together in November and I'm SOOOO EXCITED!

-Rachel- if you're reading this, we need a coffee date. SOON!

-I am in no way am intending to bash my own boudoir photographer- in fact she does beautiful work with families & babies. As photographers we often try to shoot everything to get a sense for what we want to niche down to, so I hold no hard feelings at all & I absolutely support her in her business endeavors.

-ALSO if you are struggling with an eating disorder, please seek help. Trust me, it is not the way to get your dream body. Your body is good- honor it.