I just came home from a photoshoot with ladies from my gym. I left with an urge to write and a feeling that maybe others would need to hear these words as much as I needed to be reminded.
I saw some photos of me from the back of the camera and Erica, the photographer, would say “This one is so cute!!” and I agreed… but I thought, oof I look … fat. thick. chunky. whatever word you’d like to use.
Through it all, I still love myself and the body I exist in. I laugh and say to the others, “She a little thick but she’s hot though.” They laugh. I tend to handle weird feelings with humor, but I can’t deny that I look nice in the photos. I did my makeup, curled my hair, I have nice teeth… I look nice. Maybe I don’t look thin, but I look nice.
Other ladies asked me about my trip — gushing over my photos that I posted on Instagram, inquiring about my ‘professional photographer’ (lol, S/O to my pal Michael), and telling me that they loved following along.
**Don’t get me wrong — my trip to San Juan, Puerto Rico was amazing… blog post coming soon!! I can’t wait to share everything we did and saw and enjoyed in PR. With school shut down this week, I’m hoping to write!**
However, I have to giggle and think to myself… these things have one thing in common.
Life is in the outtakes.
There’s so much life that happens between the perfect photo. For every photo I post, there’s 10 or 39 other photos that look very, very similar … but that I thought I looked fat. thick. chunky. whatever word you’d like to use.
Or I looked icky. or sweaty. or wind-blown. or sunburned. or oily. or ‘bad’. whatever word you’d like to use.
I’m not necessarily any of those things. I’m just me. I just exist in a larger body than some. Sometimes, I also look cute. hot. pretty. lovely. stunning. whatever word you’d like to use.
There’s so much of life that happens between the perfect pictures, the right angles, the gorgeous makeup, the flattering outfits. When you think about it… this is why candid photos became popular. So popular, in fact, we started posing for them. (“and laugh on three, 1.. 2… 3…hahaha”)
Because we all know — even if we don’t like to admit it — life happens in the outtakes. That’s where the fun happens. That’s where the memories are.
There’s so many memories from today’s photoshoot, my trip to Puerto Rico, and every moment in between throughout my life that are so special and wonderful there’s no way they could be captured in one singular moment caught in time through a photo.
Now, I also have to admit that I love pretty photos. Pretty photos are great. They hold some magic, and for me — are really fun to take and post and share. I love posing and shooting and editing and sharing.
But I also love my very real life, and I love coming to terms with loving whichever version of my body I see in the mirror or in pictures.
Today, I wore a sports bra in most of my photos for my gym. I felt comfy and confident in the mirror. During a few of the photos I was a little nervous that a certain pose may not flatter me or that (insert body part here) looked (insert adjective here).
I thought to myself… that’s just how I look. This is who I am. This is what my body looks like. My body still does the tough workouts just like these other amazing and gorgeous women. We’re all different shapes and sizes and I am not thinking these thoughts about any of them — I admire each and every one of those badass babes.
My body still carries me and supports me and is healthy. My body is worthy and, to be frank, fucking awesome.
And maybe, just maybe, when these photos get posted… a girl who looks like me won’t be nervous to show up to her first workout.
Or maybe, just maybe, when I post a photo of me that shows my body as it is, a girl who looks like me will post her first post on her new blog/fashion/fitness/lifestyle account. Or wear the funky outfit. Or just show up as she is.
So in case you needed the reminder, like I did, here it is:
Life is in the outtakes and loving yourself is an everyday adventure. It’s okay to show up as you are. It’s okay if it’s not always pretty photos. It’s okay if it is.
Life is more than anything that can be captured in a single moment.
Life is in the outtakes.