How Flashing Lead to Body Confidence

I'm such an artist - not. 

I was sitting considering how far I've come with being comfortable in my own skin, like many women over the years I've found that I am not as prudish when it comes to my figure as I use to be say little over seven or eight years ago. What changed? 

So I started trying to work out what was the changing factor, was it a lack of sleep after having my sons that caused me to stop bothering? was it simply growing up that did it? No, it really didn't ring true that it would be a case of 'not caring' due to being a parent. Even through a lack of sleep I still cared enough to care about looking good - for my children at least. 

I considered a lot of possible options and then I even regressed back to how I felt before I was even pregnant. The truth is I wasn't comfortable in my own skin, having started my menstrual cycle at the tender age of 9 years I was always curvier than my friends, my curvy shape lead me to believe I was 'fat' and growing up this never went away. In relationships when I was older again my inability to feel confident in my own skin was the usual thing that lead to the relationship ending. Even with my now husband I didn't like to get changed in front of him - crazy I know, I didn't like his hand on my stomach when I was sleeping on my side and it wasn't really fair on him or myself. 

Forwarding to my pregnancy which was planned, I grew horribly big and due to pre-eclampsia I was majorly swollen all over. I went from 7.5 stones to 15 stone and while I wasn't confident things started to change. I remember having to go counselling just to discuss my actual fears of labour, it wasn't the pushing I was scared off it was having to show my hoo-haa and the possibility of pooping (It's a common fear apparently). I was eventually induced due to the pre-eclampsia and by the time I got to every two minutes I had stripped off and was naked in the bath while the midwives came in and out, there were moments of self-consciousness but I knew they'd seen it all. The labour lasted 24 hours, eventually my son was stuck so we went to theatre where I'd got 2 separate episiotomys (cuts from front to back), my son was born and taken to special care while I worked on getting the feeling back in my lower half (spinal block). 

While others were numb, I was mentally screwing up my toes trying to work the block out and it worked - way faster than it should have. I was told that I couldn't go see my son until I'd stood up and been able to bear my weight on my feet. Half numb I put my feet on the floor adamant I was going to see my son, I wobbled and then happy as Larry started walking down the ward corridors - all I could focus on was seeing my son. The turning point for me came here, as I walked down the corridor everyone could see the whole backside of me. I had a theatre gown on and nothing else, you know those gowns that have no back what so ever? The thing is I couldn't care less that I was flashing to everyone. 

I've since realised that my turning point came when I'd thrown caution to the wind, putting myself in the most uncomfortable situation lead to me being comfortable. I was so scared of showing off my body and doing it that once was me living my worst fear and, it wasn't that bad. Being able to laugh at my flaws made it so easy to do the same each time I reverted back to being self-conscious about something. 

Two children later and I completely agree that the incident of flashing lead me to where I am today. While I'm not 100% happy with my own body (and who really is) I know that my lumps and bumps are apart of me and that is OK. My advice to anyone who feels self-conscious, isn't comfortable in their own skin or is worrying about being fat, short, tall, awkward or any other issue is to figure out what would be your worst nightmare. Maybe it's going for a full body massage, maybe it's going swimming, life modelling or going for a boudoir shot. Maybe it's something easier like wearing skinny jeans, a body con dress or a short skirt. 

Do it! Even if it's for 15 minutes, even if you put on a short skirt and walk about the house, get your partner to take a photo and I bet when you look at it you will realise things aren't that bad. Of course it will take work so even if you just take little steps once a week things will improve - I promise. 

So heres, to uncomfortable situations making things right. I recently heard a quote that said 'If you're not scared you're not taking a chance. If you're not taking a chance then what the hell are you doing.' - Ted Mosby. Life is for living, it's not for simply plodding along never accomplishing anything lovelies. 




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