It’s been 24 years since i have had the courage to buy and wear a bikini. But i did it today. I put it on, took pictures and forced myself to face my fears and post them, both here and on social media. It’s been one year since i started back into bodybuilding with commitment and focus. And starting over again at age 54 wasn’t easy. My self confidence had hit rock bottom after a decade of slacking off, partying, toxic relationships and otherwise letting myself go. I didn’t think i would ever be able to show my body, flaws and all, publicly ever again. Here ya go:
These photos signify one full year of consistent hard work, dedication, and sacrifice. A year of struggling with nutrition and health issues. A year of getting up, going in and putting in the work- day after day- even when i didn’t feel like it.
I have another year, maybe even two, to go before i am ready to even think about competing.I need to add more lean muscle, sculpt and refine.And then the truly hard part- competition “prep” will begin.
Everyday, i am grateful I made the choice to quit a lifestyle that was destructive, unproductive, and full of bad choices. Everyday, i am grateful i finally chose “me”.
And now, i can look that insecurity demon in the eye and say
But it’s not what you think. I am not, in fact, marrying a man. I am marrying a woman. Now that I have your full attention- i’ll explain:)
For a few months now I have been wavering emotionally. As I have explained in the last few posts, a lot has come down the pike this year-
– dealing with a shoulder injury which an MRI confirmed is a full thickness bursa tear in my rotator cuff. The cost of it forcing me to do away with most of the therapies which were helping to heal it and focus on what I can afford as well as causing a set back in my progress. 7 months of rehab work and about 75% healed. It isn’t over, but the effort and results so far have been worth avoiding surgery.
– an unexpected break up in February which drained me emotionally. However, things are looking up!
-lab work showing abnormal kidney function which I hoped to reverse. I had my heart doctor reduce my med dosage, started hydrating to death, added electrolytes and met with a Nutrition counselor. Today I got my new results back and SUCCESS! All within normal range. Now I can move on with the supplementation I have been wanting to add.
– 3 weeks of a cold turned into bronchitis which really hindered my work outs. I have been on antibiotics and an inhaled steroid now for about 7 days- 3 more to go.i ahve finally returned to regular workouts this week and am feeling better. Fingers crossed for full recovery.
All of these things had led to severe bouts with depression and hopelessness at times, but fortunately, I didn’t allow myself to stay in the downward spirals and to celebrate , today I made a decision to get married.
Married to myself, and my own body. I have hereby written these vows and will commit to them in full (to be said standing in front of the mirror) when i receive this symbolic item(ordered today):
“With this thing (pictured above), I thee wed and with it I bestow upon thee all the endeavors of my mind, heart and hands.
“You are more precious to me today than yesterday, and you will be more cherished tomorrow than you are today. Please wear this thing, as a symbol of my eternal love for you, a love that transcends all our yesterdays, all our todays, and all our tomorrows.”
“The wearing of this thing with its clasp joining two parts of the whole, symbolizes my everlasting love for you. The placing of this around my neck is the fulfillment of my dreams to have you as my most faithful partner, to live as one forever.”
“You are the love of my life, and you are my very best friend.”
“I give you this thing to wear as a symbol of my enduring love, my eternal faith, and my undying devotion. It is an outward reminder of our inner unity.”
“I give you this thing as a symbol of my commitment to you in full. The promise of enduring devotion and the focus of my life. I promise to honor you first and foremost, forsaking all others, till death us do part.”
It may sound weird or even totally “out there” to some. But this symbolic commitment is based on self love, and that deserves a celebration. I believe it is important for anyone learning to love themselves (for the first time or simply re-committing) to have something to serve as a daily reminder .
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The writings of a former #winemom, diet culture survivor, and sometime supermom maintaining my sobriety, sanity and self. Proudly alcohol-free since July 5, 2018. *PLEASE NOTE THIS BLOG IS NOW ARCHIVED. BUT I AM STILL BLOGGING! VISIT ME AT JOYINDURING.COM/BLOG TO CATCH UP!*