Cindy’s Self-Love Journey!
To Cindy, self-love means acceptance. Accepting and loving herself for who she is, not just accepting her body with all it’s imperfections, wrinkles and scars! It’s also accepting the person she has become through all the struggles she’s been through and survived. Cindy has struggled with her weight most of her life. A few years ago Cindy made the decision to have surgery to help her drop some of her weight. She’s lost a tremendous amount of weight and tries her best to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle. At 60, Cindy is left with extra skin from her weight loss. I’m so incredibly proud of Cindy and how she’s learned to accept her new body. This woman has the most amazing heart and would do anything for anyone. She’s been actively taking the steps to ensuring she will be here for a long time to come.
“I am about 90% there! From a very early age I was taught that I was not good enough or worthy because of the way I looked. It took me a very long time to change all that self-hatred. Now I know it’s okay to be totally and authentically me, regardless of how my body looks. I am worthwhile and I do matter!”
How have you gotten to this point in your journey, Cindy?
“A huge turning point for me was seeing my pictures from my first boudoir photo shoot. I know that sounds funny to say that I learned to love myself for me and not for how I looked by seeing pictures of myself, but that was the very first time I ever realized, I looked like a “normal” person, or more accurately the societies version of what normal should be. In my eyes I was never that acceptable size and was raised to believe that you have to be a certain size to be successful in anything. It sounds so silly to me now. Since then, I have been working very hard on accepting myself for who I am and not what my body looks like. I have learned how to get rid of all the old baggage from years of mental abuse.
Having a lot of support from the amazing women I have met through the Sarah Jane VIP group was a huge help. Seeing other woman of all different sizes and shapes being happy, successful, and supportive of each other changed everything for me. I can’t tell you how freeing it feels to let go of all that weight both physical and mental that was holding me back for decades! I am at a place now where I can truly say I not only like myself, but I love myself! “
It’s all part of Cindy’s story.
“When you have grown up with ‘fat’ being a dirty word, it can be hard to learn how to love yourself. You can’t suddenly rewire your mind after feeling a certain way for much of your life. So yes, I have good days and bad days. I try not to focus to much energy on the bad days and embrace the good days. The days where I look in the mirror and like who I see. The days where I look at my body and think WOW, this is me. The moments where I am not comparing myself to other people.
That’s not to say that I don’t want to work on my physical appearance. Love working out, not to get skinnier or to fit into some unrealistic mold, it’s because I want to be stronger and healthier. I want to experience new things and go on new adventures that the old me would have never dreamed possible. Also, I want to live the rest of my life being positive. I want to uplift myself and all other woman. Saying and thinking positive words and thoughts to myself every day changed my life. Practice saying nice things to yourself every morning! I promise you it will make a huge difference in your life as well. Your words have unbelievable power.”
I’ve been lucky enough to have photographed Cindy several times. It’s been such a joy to see her come out of her shell and gain some confidence over the last couple years. Would you like to see another self-love session? If so, check out Kim’s story!