Anyone who has been in a toxic relationship knows how hard you beat yourself up after you finally let go. I’ve been through more toxic relationships than I care to admit, however my last one was by far the hardest and the worst because it was with a narcissist. When he left me for another woman it was a devastating blow to my self-confidence and self-esteem. For months, I hid my body underneath ill-fitting clothes because I was ashamed of my mom-bod. My work suffered because I was so depressed I just couldn’t get motivated. Dating was non-existent because he left me with so many trust issues. In my head, I had convinced myself that I was destined to just be a single mother of two kids. And then it happened, my friends finally got through to me and I started to see that him leaving had nothing to do with me and everything to do with him. That day I picked myself up and dusted myself off. I decided to do something for me for a change and I started looking for boudoir photographers in the area.
A friend of mine was already in the Crimson Boudoir Facebook group, so I went ahead and joined to see if I’d be a good fit with Melissa. This may seem silly, but one of the things that drew me to Melissa was that she doesn’t wear makeup on a daily basis. It is very rare when I wear makeup, and always feel like other women are judging me for not getting up and making that extra effort in the morning. I know, I know. That’s totally silly, but her embracing her natural look was very appealing and helped reduce the intimidation factor!
After being in the group for about a month, I was ready to take the plunge. I contacted Melissa, set up a time to chat, and was even more confident that I had chosen the best photographer for what I was wanting after talking for a bit on the phone. My session was set for two months out, plenty of time for me to shed the extra weight that I felt was holding me back.
I gained about 10 lbs by the time my session rolled around! Guess what though? You’d never even know I gained weight or needed to lose weight from looking at my images!
Honestly, I felt like a celebrity during the entire session. Sitting there being all dolled up and then seeing your finished look is incredible. Especially if, like me, you rarely wear makeup and don’t do much with your hair on a regular basis. Not to mention, when Melissa walks in and says “Damn Girl!” you can’t help but smile and feel good about yourself. She reminds you of your beauty throughout the entire session as well. Total ego booster!
As I stated before, I was not in a good place with my confidence going into this session. So here’s the thing… My session was on a Monday and that same week on Friday I had to go to court and face my narcissistic ex. I may have been shaking like a leaf walking into that court room, but I can say my head was held high. I must have had quite the presence, too, because even though there were two of us against my ex, the judge directed nearly all the questions towards me. Just when the high of the session was wearing off and my confidence was starting to dwindle….we were finally able to line up our schedules for the reveal. Hello sweet confidence, welcome back! Even though I had seen most of the shots on the back of Melissa’s camera, seeing them on a larger scale made it all the more real and eye-opening.
Going into this I was terrified. I’m not a model. I don’t know how to pose. I’m not a perfect size 4 with a tiny waist. You know what though? It didn’t matter. Melissa knows just how to turn you to make you look like you just stepped out of a catalog. Throughout the entire session, not only is she taking gorgeous pictures, but she’s also boosting your confidence with her nonstop comments about how beautiful you are and how amazing your body is.
I went into this wanting some intimate photos for myself, and left with a new found love of myself and my body.