I just entered my late twenties, and I still have body issues. At 16, I would've bet anything that these thoughts would be gone by now. I’d have perfect skin and love my body. Or at least that’s what I prayed for. But nope. 

I grew up a pretty serious dancer. Dance was my entire life, and second to that was filming commercials, making music, and acting. My image was everything. I remember being told how beautiful my arabesque could’ve been if I didn’t have such a bubble butt — that was when I was at a nice 95 pounds. 

So, growing up and becoming a “woman” has been hell on my ego and confidence. I imagine I’m not alone in this, but we all spend so much time faking how secure we are that we end up struggling through these insane changes silently, and alone.

Time to speak up, lovelies.

This last month I needed all new photos for the audition season. And when asking what I needed, every agent said “a sexier picture.” A “body shot." Ugh, barf. I’m 5’1 and possibly 112-ish (I avoid scales at all cost) and I was repulsed by the idea of myself in lingerie. 

When I got to set that morning, I was feeling huge. I just wasn’t my 18-year-old dancer body anymore and I had no idea how to hold myself. I kept apologizing. It edged on embarrassing. But, when the photographer asked if I wanted to do the lingerie shot, I said “F--- it! Let’s do it.” Face your fears, right?

And you know what? They were my favorite photos of the entire day. I looked like a Cosmo spread and I couldn’t even believe it. I’m a woman! When the heck did that happen?!

When I received the final images, I stared at them, then decided to post them on Facebook. It wasn’t a popular decision amongst my family, but I needed to do it. I needed to own my body. It’s time to throw out this “idea of skinny.” I need to stop putting ridiculous pressure on myself to have a 16-year-old cocaine chic body. These thoughts about what I should look like, or what size I should wear are just that. Thoughts. They're silly and sad. Focusing on health and happiness will make me prettier and sexier than being 100 pounds and dying for a cupcake. 

Plus, today is as young as I am ever going to be again. I want to live in it and enjoy it. You should too.


Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com


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