In 2012 I declared on the radio in Bunbury that I hated the way I looked and looking in the mirror on a daily basis was a struggle.
I’d been battling with the way I saw myself for a very long time but I was drinking and eating away the pain. I wouldn’t leave the house without covering my arms and sometimes I couldn’t even get out the front door as I was crippled with anxiety and self-hate. This moment on the radio changed my life forever, the phone lines at the radio station rang off the hook for two weeks straight, with people wanting to share their stories about their body image issues.
It was at this moment that I knew I wasn’t alone.
I realised two things that day, the first one, was the power of radio. I got into radio to be the funny fat girl who would make people laugh on the way to work not the girl to make people cry, feel and express emotions they had been battling for years. I realised the connection I shared with everyday people, our listeners.The other thing that came to me during that time, was that I had the opportunity to change peoples lives with my story and by using the mic not just to tell jokes or funny stories but to share REAL life emotions and experiences and let people know, no matter how crap they are feeling there is someone else who feels the same way. I was absolutely blown away by the response from the public, so much so we put an event on for people to start the journey of loving themselves with a “Let it go” swim.
It was massive, hundreds of people mostly strangers turned up to support each other and start letting go of some of the self-hate and baggage we all carried around. A memory that I will never forget from this day that I often replay over and over again, is when a woman in her 50 droves an hour out of her way from work, just to give me a hug and say thank you. I remember her running towards me at the beach with tears streaming down her face, she grabbed me and squeezed me tight telling me that she had not worn shorts her entire adult life as she hated her legs so much but that day after hearing my story she was going straight to the shops to buy her first pair of shorts. It’s been a long road to get where I am but its all been worth it, I have cried many tears over the years and wanted to give up but today I can stand before you and tell you that I like the way that I look. I’ll never be perfect but I am happy and for this journey, I am so grateful and I would like to share it with you.
I am excited to tell you that I am collaborating with some super inspiring women on March 10th for a “No Bullshit Body Talk”.
I am teaming up with Dr Katherine a body confidence expert and two Perth Models who are best friends Kate Wasely and Georgia Gibbs who created Any Body Co to share advice, tips and our stories over four hours. Jess Pinili a Personal Trainer will also be a guest speaker and then Melissa Howard owner of Twisting Peacock Yoga will guide us through some super easy, chilled out yin yoga to finish the day. All of us have been affected by our own demons with the way we see ourselves and we are hoping to inspire and educate as many women and men as possible on Saturday, March 10. Every day I am messaged by people asking how I have got to this point in my life and what is the secret and if I am honest with you, I have never doubted or disliked my personality so I have got by with that. The way I see myself, on the other hand, was a constant struggle and it took opening up on the radio for me to finally start to heal and make changes to get to where I am. It hasn’t been an easy road, I remember my mate Wayne sitting me on the couch after I spoke out, he had some pretty wise words that I’ll never forget. He said, “You now need to walk the walk, talking the talk is the easy part. You can’t open up and declare that you are just going to start to love yourself without putting the work in.” He was right, things weren’t just going to change after speaking out.
So the hard yards began…
- I started with affirmations and leaving myself love notes on the mirror.
- I went to 100s of self-love workshops and read self-help book after self-help book.
- I spoke more and more openly about the way I saw myself, trying to take away the power it had over me.
- I did photo shoots in my swimwear even though I was dying inside and still a work in progress.
- I wrote articles to people about body image, even though I was still struggling. Looking back I think the articles were more for me than anyone else.
- I even tried nude yoga with my friend Rosie Rees to combat my body image issues, it was fun but it didn’t quieten down the negative voice in my head, I still wasn’t happy.
It was just last year after I met Dr Kat that I finally started to feel free from my demons. It’s taken a lot of blood, sweat, tears and money but I can finally say that I like myself and I am ready to share with you my journey and tips. I am not perfect and neither should you be, I like to refer to myself as a work in progress. I don’t want to waste any more time caring what I look like or what people think, life is too short.
I want young girls and boys to LIVE and soak up every moment they have on this earth.