It didn’t kill me, so I guess that means I’m stronger. 😉
To recap from the previous post, I decided to face my fears and subject myself to a boudoir shoot. My goal for the shoot was to work through my most deeply rooted insecurities, and face down my most destructive beliefs about myself. I decided that the only way I could feel comfortable doing a shoot of this kind would be to put myself in the hands of my husband, Jason. I wanted to see myself through his eyes, so I let him have some say over what I wore, and I let him pose me and frame the shots the way he wanted. I set up the camera and the lighting so all he had to do was point and click to get a proper exposure.
At the time of yesterday’s shoot, I was so freakin terrified that I couldn’t think past myself. But today I can look back on how it went and see it a little more clearly.
I see this exercise now, in hindsight, for what it really was: a powerful trust exercise.
Honestly, I don’t feel sexy in my own skin, and have never felt okay with how my body looked (even though in hindsight, I should have appreciated it better back before I had 3 kids!) I try to hide what I really look like, even from my own husband. During the summer, I can often be seen on the beach fully clothed, while my children frolic in the water. But that insecurity comes with a price, and I know it has impacted our marriage — just by existing it creates a barrier between us, preventing us from achieving that ultimate trust and intimacy. By putting my husband in control of this risque session, I was forced to suspend all of my insecurities and allow him to show me the ways he finds me sexy. I thought I knew how he would pose me, what angles he would be more “into” … but I was truly surprised by what he chose.
The outcome of this session so far has been the following:
- I faced my fears and insecurities (which feels amazing and scary at the same time!)
- My assumptions about what part(s) of my body my husband finds sexy were inaccurate/incomplete
- Watching my husband’s face as he took control of my body was an incredibly powerful experience
- The belief that my husband would be disgusted to see my whole body for what it really is — destroyed
- My ability to believe the compliments my husband gives me on my appearance has been restored
- My trust in my husband has grown
- My inhibitions around my husband are less strong, and I expect them to decrease more with time
- My ability to see myself as a person worthy of love and worthy of my husband’s admiration has increased greatly
I cannot get over the look on Jason’s face during the session. He was full on beaming. He is a happy guy in general, but I am not sure I have ever seen him “beaming” before … except maybe when he first held each of our three babies. It was pure love shining from his face. It was acceptance, gratitude, excitement even. I was totally stunned to see that reaction from him. It went right to my core, to all the places I have always felt unlovable. I can’t describe how powerful that feeling is, but it brings me to tears thinking about it.
This year, in September of 2018, we will arrive at our 10 year wedding anniversary. I am so excited to hit that milestone more in love and closer than ever.
Let me turn this around for a minute and ask: can you imagine performing this exercise with your spouse? Giving your spouse that control over you, then doing the same in reverse?
I think it would be a really amazing exercise for a couple to have a boudoir shoot together structured this way — first you dress and pose your spouse in ways you find most sexy, then they get to do the same to you.
How would a boudoir session with your spouse change your marriage?
I would love to hear from anybody considering taking their marriage to that next level. Don’t put your inhibitions at the helm – take a leap and see what happens! A couples boudoir session can take many forms, this is just one option.
But, if you’re wondering, no, I still haven’t been able to bring myself to look at the pictures. It’s going to take some time for me to be ready to see them. Maybe tomorrow. 😉
I looked at the pictures. And I survived.
They were better than I had imagined. And in some cases, exactly as bad as I had imagined. But I decided to look at them with love, not with fear or shame. So that is what I did.
It has been a month since I allowed a boudoir session to happen for me – what has the outcome been?
My marriage is more open and honest. I am now able to not only notice when my insecurities are rising up and trying to take the helm, but I can talk about it openly with my husband, and put it back into perspective.
It feels like a barrier between us has been destroyed. I trust my husband more, and I feel closer to him. He has also been more open and honest with me.
I have been able to decline to entertain the negative thoughts that pop up when I see myself in a mirror or a photograph. I hear them, and I say “thanks, but no.” I have been choosing love, and that feels amazing.
I also ordered lingerie and wore it around the house (after the kids were asleep…..)
And I am already planning my next boudoir session. Because where I once assumed this was something everyone should do once in a lifetime, I now think it’s an exercise in self love, and should be repeated whenever the desire strikes.