I want to talk about vulnerability for a minute. Specifically how dang important it is.
Vulnerability is the gateway to a more fulfilling life.
Trust me, I know. I've been working on different pathways to better know myself and vulnerability is one of the most effective ways to suck the dang marrow out of life. So, I've been experimenting with this whole 'allow yourself to be vulnerable and open to alllll the feelings and experiences and joy and pain' thing for the past few months and my life REALLY is changing!
I think Brené Brown phrased it best when she said, "Vulnerability is the birthplace of connection and the path to the feeling of worthiness. If it doesn't feel vulnerable, the sharing is probably not constructive."
In order to make meaningful connections you have to allow yourself to be seen. So I've started letting people see me in all my socially-awkward glory. I've stopped pretending to be happy when I'm not and I have stopped apologizing for things that don't need apologizing for. things like saying sorry for taking a little longer than usual to walk through a door that's being held open for you. (First of all don't hold a door open for me when I am so dang far away that I have to practically run to get there so you aren't standing there holding the door for me for all eternity because now I have to RUN and I HATE running. Rude.)
What makes you vulnerable makes you beautiful. Perceived 'flaws' and all. Anyone who isn't a walking zombie or a huge douche canoe is going to be immediately drawn to you if you're an emoter (see my previous post) or you show vulnerability. Why? BECAUSE BEING WHO YOU REALLY, TRULY, UN-APOLOGETICLLY ARE IS FUCKING BRAVE. And everyone recognizes that vulnerability and courage at a cellular level.
So what even is vulnerability?
It's the willingness to say 'I love you' first when you have no idea if the other person feels that same way as you do.
It's taking the leap and doing that thing (like moving to a different country or quitting that job that is sucking the life out of you so you can try to make a living off of a passion that you have) even though everyone around you is saying that it's too risky.
It's getting on the stage and singing in public for the first time.
It's telling your partner about a sexual thing you want to try.
It's SO many things but basically it's just being brave. Having courage. Opening up.
I see the lack of vulnerability in boudoir SO DAMN MUCH and it looks like this-
"I'd love to do a shoot but I'm to old/fat/thin/not pretty enough/not good enough/don't have enough time/money/support to do it but someday maybe I'll do it."
All of these things are excuses that people use to ring around the rosey the REAL issue which is this-
Lack of self worth.
You see, it's easy to say, "I'm gonna go into that boudoir shoot and rock it out when I'm perfect and toned" but the truth is that rarely happens. You'll either be paralyzed by fear and shame because your looks aren't the real issue OR always be chasing the impossible perfection because to stop and look at yourself in the mirror and say 'I'M GOOD ENOUGH' would mean you'd have to be vulnerable enough to sit with yourself and confront who you are right now. And then accept yourself and alllll that you are....and all that you perceive yourself not to be. That takes true vulnerability.
I promise this isn't a post trying to guilt into into booking a session. You'll book when your self worth barometer goes up a bit, or when you've saved up enough, whichever comes first.
This is a post about being vulnerable so I'm going to digress some more about MY FAVORITE DAMN THING ABOUT MY JOB!
My favorite thing is when I get you in front of me and I look into your eyes. Not with my camera, but with my own eyes looking into yours. And you know what happens? YOU CRACK OPEN. You spew your vulnerability everywhere and I capture it for all time.
It's so much more than great butt pictures y'all. It's connection and soul gazing and vulnerability and emotion AND YES it is also good butt pictures.
This is what I love about my job. I get to give you yourself.
The you that maybe you've always known was there but from a very young age were told in tiny little ways wasn't good enough so, piece by piece, you shoved your YOU-ness into a box that you hardly ever (or maybe never?) look at.
The you that you're starting to get to know a bit better and are learning to love who she is, 'flaws' and all.
The you that maybe needs someone like me to come along and push you off the vulnerability cliff so you can feel what it's like finally to be just un-apologetically yourself, even if it's just for a photo shoot.
Shooting with me is an exercise in the art of vulnerability. Not just because at some point you'll most likely be naked but because your emotions will be out on display and you'll have to tap into feelings that maybe you don't always show people. But I got you boo, that's what I'm good at. And if you don't believe me then just look at these dang pictures.
This is Autumn. She started out a stranger and became a great friend. We connected, she was vulnerable, and you can feel her vulnerability in the images.