What better day of the week is there than Tuesday to place your fears out there with just a white bikini and strips of cloth? It’s been three Tuesdays since I’ve done it and it’s an experience I encourage everyone to try at least one.
What is it that I’m asking you to try? Saying “yes” to opportunities because your heart tells you that your ready even when your mind decides to try to convince you otherwise.
On August 17, 2017 I get to add Keynote Speaker to my list of accomplishments. I will be speaking at an event being put on by Indigo Rose Project in Houston called “Mind, Body, and Soul”. More details will be shared as I get it!! When she asked me if I was interested I wanted to scream “Of course I’m interested! This is EXACTLY what I wanted to accomplish with this project!” but I’m pretty sure I responded with a cool and calm “I’d be honored to.” Both are accurate statements just delivered slightly differently.
As it turns out one of the women also speaking as a panelist at the event wanted to put together a photo series. So, I got a call asking to bring any white articles of clothing I had for a photo shoot with Diana Simonetta. I don’t have much white in my repertoire so I made it a point to grab my bikini as well as a dress, skirt, and t-shirt. The only other request she made was for me to think of 5 things I wish I could change about myself. Got it. I’m a reflective person. Easy peasy, right? Not so much. The makeup though. That’s always fun! Thank you Amanda!
After that? That’s when things got a little more complicated. A simple photo shoot turned into a deeply reflective experience that ends with much liberation after much hesitation.
This is Diana’s Transformation Photography which she used to create “Healing Through Photography” for submission to the International Photography Awards. She had a vision and I wanted to be as authentic about this experience as possible. It’s easy to fake an “issue” that you’ve really already overcome to get to the fun picture part but this wasn’t about getting a pretty picture. It was about getting to the heart of the matter and being so genuine that it inspires and encourages others to do the same.
She didn’t ask me to do this but if you are in the Houston area or any area and are interested in doing this is her contact info.
We lost track of time in this space and I am so thankful for her attentiveness and vision for her work because the end result was me being able to liberate myself even more and bring a little more balance to my world.
She asked me such a simple question when we started and I froze when it came time to answer.
How can we honor you and your project with these photos?
The very first thing that came to my mind was “to take the opportunity to honor the dancer in me who I gave up on”. I wanted to dance! The thought came effortlessly but getting the words out did not. Not even close. I felt so ridiculous for even thinking it. That was 16 years go that I stopped dancing. How could THAT be the one thing I wanted to do with this opportunity?
This is when I stick to the promise I made to myself whenever I found myself in this situation.
If it’s fear that’s making you doubt yourself then, do it.
So I did and this is what happened.
I did another thing I was told I couldn’t/shouldn’t do.
Not because I have the dancer body or because someone asked me to but because my soul moves to music and my body follows.
When she sent me the pictures I gasped because they were everything I wanted them to be. I loved my movement and I loved more that in that moment, I was letting go of the hurt and shame and doubt I didn’t realize I was still carrying around. I was able to honor that part of my life that had been tucked away and all but forgotten.
I am so incredibly thankful and grateful for the opportunity to participate in this project and that I listened to my heart. It’s not always easy and I am still working on things because I’ve simply chosen to give myself permission to.
A remarkably true story that I’d really like to add to this whole thing is that it was 16 years ago since the last time I danced on a stage. I had a solo and in it I was an angel. Dressed in all white. It feels phenomenal to give 18 year old me closure. To let her know it took me some time but I got back to doing what I love.
What would 18 year old you give you permission to do today? What part of your life have you left unfulfilled and simple dismiss because it seems too embarrassing to even mention?
I’ve discovered in this journey, that the place I’m afraid to go to is the best place to start discovery where my self worth and self love have been buried.
The date has been set for this event and I am stoked to be the Keynote speaker! If you’re in Houston, come on down and let’s grow together!