Couldn't See My Face

I am 41 and starting over. About a year ago I hit an all time emotional low. My marriage of 7+ years was ending, I was losing my house to the bank and I hated everything about myself. My self-esteem has always been low secondary to an emotionally abusive upbringing. Though I’d overcome many negative aspects of my childhood, my self-image issues remained ignored and untouched. With these life-altering changes looming on my horizon I decided to try to become more proactive and less of a victim of my own making.

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I began to run, cycle, do hot yoga…anything to keep moving. As weight began to fall off I felt more comfortable in my skin but whenever I attempted to picture myself in my mind it was always a faceless, chubby, insecure little girl I saw. Speaking to friends I realized that not being able to see one’s own face wasn’t normal.

My search for a solution was not easy. I recalled a college roomate having similar issues and how boudoir portraits of her made her self esteem soared! The pictures, while beautiful, were not my style. It was the 80′s and they were more of a “glamour photo” with lots of big hair and excessive make-up. Researching online I found many photographers that specialized in boudoir portraiture but again….not quite right. Then, by some divine act of grace I found Lolo’s Boudoir. It was exactly what I was searching for! The black and white photography was stunning and artistic. I wept for in my heart I believed I had found what I needed. The minute I spoke with Lone I knew she could help me. I cried openly sharing my soul and my pain while explaining what it was I desperately needed to achieve. She was kind, caring, and her wisdom then and now has proven to be endless. I made the appointment for my 41st birthday. It was approximately 6 months away.

Then, the anticipation of MY photo shoot! Scary, exciting, nauseating, freeing! I never knew I could feel so many emotions at once. I began to be apprehensive and concerned that I wasn’t ready. If I could just lose a few more pounds! I was tempted to change the date. I called Lone and expressed my concerns and she told me that postponing the shoot would be no different then postponing my life. I could no longer wait to start living! I had in fact already begun to live my life as the woman I wanted to be and I needed to keep moving forward. She was so right…..I did not change the date.

MY day! I was so nervous. All the way until arriving in Sausalito, I wanted to turn and run. At the studio I was greeted by Lone’s warmth and charisma. She shared champagne and conversation and then we began. It is very easy to get caught up in attempting to achieve the perfect Marilyn Monroe pose! Lone made me laugh and as we talked I began to relax into poses that allowed her to capture my essence. I opted for 2 locations, the boudoir and the barn. The day went by much too quickly but in the end I felt I had achieved a major milestone in my life. Something had been allowed to break free!

When it came time to review my photos I believe I was even more nervous then going to have them taken. I worried that I wouldn’t like any of them. I began to pray for 1 or 2 nice, flattering pictures. When I was presented with my photos I felt the little girl inside of me jump and laugh and cry! One picture was my immediate favorite, then another, and another! Here was this gorgeous, sexy, amazing woman! And that woman was me! I will never be able to fully express how I felt and still feel when I look at the photos. For the first time in my life I truly felt like a complete and whole woman. I have shared my pictures with a few special friends and am flattered by the compliments I receive. Lone is not just a photographer. She is a soul revealer….a dream giver. She spent a day with me and found my inner diva and brought her to light!

Since this experience I have moved into my own apartment and come to terms with the loss of my home. I have moved forward with the termination of my marriage and even begun to allow myself to open up to the possibility of a fresh new relationship. My confidence and self-esteem are beginning to soar at last! I am planning on having a second photo shoot within the year. I am saving to finally go on my dream vacation of cycling through the Tuscan Valley of Italy. I no longer have walls built around my future and when I close my eyes and envision myself I see the strong, funny, shy, vivacious woman that I have become. My face and all!