Why would someone say, “Getting nearly naked improved my self-confidence”?
I’m so glad you asked!
The journey to self-confidence and embodiment can be a long one. Messages from our youth and society often leave us feeling at war against our bodies and disconnected from our physical form. Even if we once felt in tune with and confident in our bodies, it will most likely change as our bodies move through the changes of puberty, pregnancy, post-partum, perimenopause, menopause, and the aging process.
There’s no doubt about it; the journey to embodiment is windy and constant.
The following is a personal essay from Lindsay Hite, the founder, and photographer of Show Your Spark, a women’s empowerment photography studio. She reflects on her journey to reconnecting with her body after giving birth through photography and embodiment practices.
Continue reading to learn more about how getting nearly naked improved her self-confidence!
Getting to Know My Body as My Own
I fell in love with dance as a little kid the first time I stepped foot in a studio to attend a birthday party. I found confidence through dance and movement throughout my life even when I felt awkward or unsure in other areas of my life. The times I’ve felt disconnected from myself, my essence, are when I haven’t been able to or simply forgot to make time to move my body intentionally.
I gave birth 10 months ago and I feel like I’ve been giving birth to a new version of myself – on so many levels- ever since then. I’m sure many people can relate to what I’m about to say. As much as I am in awe that my body created and nourished a new life, I am now trying to get to know my body again as my own. From a c-section to breastfeeding, a loss of so much muscle mass, and now the energy devoted to caring for this tiny human, the connection to my body as a source of confidence and strength has taken a major dip.
I Got to See a Different Side of Myself
So when I had a creative idea to do a new version of our fine art nude set for our clients, I knew I had to step in front of the camera and test it out! I asked Michelle, a member of the Show Your Spark team if she would help me out in the studio to make these self-portraits come to life. She said “Hell yeah! I’m in!”
Slipping off my robe in the dim of the lights, I was so nervous even though we work together in the studio with naked ladies ALL the time! I had the thought- “Who are you to be doing this right now?”
And then…I remembered! There is no failure here. I get to try new things, and see a different side of myself….with no judgment and nothing to lose, only gain.
Helping Me Rebuild My Confidence
Putting on the heels, and getting into poses was HARD work. I had no balance and my muscles were screaming at me for using them in ways I haven’t for many months. But I gave myself grace and breathed deep.
When I looked at the photos we made, it opened up something in me I hadn’t felt in a while. I felt sexy– for ME– not because someone told me I was, but because I could see my curves, the texture on my skin, my belly, my hips, the muscle tone in my back that I didn’t know was still there! I saw ME as beautiful, and I felt proud– proud of the journey I’ve been on, and proud of the kindness I am showing to myself now.
I wanted to create these portraits as bodyscapes to help people reconnect with their bodies, without judgment of what to wear, or what facial expression they’re making. The goal was to truly strip it all down to our core – to our bodies that carry us through life. Doing these self-portraits unlocked something within myself and helped build the blocks to help me start to rebuild my confidence.
Continuing the Journey Through Movement
I built on that foundation while participating in a recent Lap Dance class we hosted at the studio. During that class, I felt free and joyful in my own skin in a way I haven’t in a while. I got to MOVE again, without an agenda and without pressure for certain results.
As a result of both the photo session and the Lap Dance class, I’m feeling my confidence and spirit coming back into my body and my inner spark being relit in a way I haven’t felt in a while. I’m still on a journey- but such is life.
Little by little, we are always giving birth to new versions of ourselves. As a photographer and the owner of Show Your Spark, it’s an honor to witness this rebirthing in others through their Spark Sessions with us.
Now, I’m on my own journey of self-discovery. Will you join me?
Show Your Spark is a full-service, luxury photography studio in Braintree, MA founded on the belief that ALL women deserve to feel confident and powerful in their own skin – no exceptions. We are on a mission to help women find and celebrate confidence through trauma-informed, transformative, and empowering portrait experiences in our studio, through community events, and through our philanthropic work.
We would be honored to help you on your journey of self-discovery through your own portrait session or by being a part of our community.
Here are four ways you can get involved in the mission of Show Your Spark.