If you look at my family’s pictures over the past 10 years or so, you’ll notice something is missing…me. I used so many excuses to avoid being in front of the camera. After all, somebody has to take the picture, right? The truth is, though…I didn’t want to be seen. I was afraid to be seen. I felt safer, more comfortable outside the picture.
Truth be told…I still do, but I’m no longer allowing my fear to keep me out of the picture.
I realized, seeing pictures a friend posted of her parents, now gone, that one day these pictures I’m avoiding so much might be all my children have left of me. How selfish is it to deny them the comfort of seeing my face next to theirs in family photos simply because I wasn’t brave enough to be seen? To deny them momentos simply because I couldn’t love and accept myself as I am?
We live in a time where there are filters and everything is carefully curated before being shown. There are standards of perfection we will never meet. Even if I reach my goal weight and have six pack abs, guess what? I’m still going to have the wrinkles on my forehead that everyone in my family gets. I’m still going to be 5 foot 2. I’m still not going to measure up to the ideals I’m shown every day on Instagram.
So…I’m not going to try to change to fit those ideals.
I’m going to put myself out there as I am, imperfect but real and unfiltered. I’m going to let myself be seen even if it feels awkward or uncomfortable because my friends and family are worth it and maybe, just maybe, it will help others be more accepting of themselves.