(I dedicate this to all the beautiful women I get to work with every day, that trust me, that break out of the comfort level with me, that start out every conversation about what they don't like about themselves... This one's for you)

  With this story I hope to show you just how stupid you sound to everybody else.
I mean that in the most heartfelt, uplifting way possible. Honest.

Every woman has something about herself that she hates, or at least dislikes. If you say you don't, you have either hit a delusional state or you really are just that damn happy. Good for you, I guess. But for the rest of us who haven't been lucky enough for our body to push out such levels of serotonin, we can openly admit we have a few things about ourselves we're not that pumped about, big or small. 

Our big butts. Our thunder thighs. Our wrinkles. Our stretch marks. Our floppy arms. Our acne. Our unmanageable hair. That one freckle in the wrong spot. The way we look from the side. You get the point.

For me, it was, no.... we're being honest here.... IS... my thighs. I will admit here I am not 100% happy with them, but at least I could care a whole lot less than what I did.

Ya know, maybe one day I'll work up the ambition to firm them up, find a miracle cream that makes them not what they are. But for now... the reality is, I have my grandma's and my mom's genes, and we are rocking legs that never seem to look toned. As my mom would say, "Sorry you were blessed with bad skin tone." Have any of us really done A LOT about it? No. So... I guess I should shut up, but... just continue to listen to me complain for a second.

When I was in high school I really, really hated the look of my thighs. I didn't want anyone else looking at them either. So, in the dead heat of the summer, before capris were cool and all they offered were booty shorts, I would wear pants. Long, thick, jeans in 90 degree weather. I specifically remember going to Cedar Point, standing in HOT lines, and wearing pants, wanting to die. It was that day, after looking around at EVERYONE ELSE with their bodies all shapes and sizes hanging out, that I decided NO MORE. Get over it. Put on so damn shorts... at least in the blazing sun.

It was last year. It was the first year since probably 10th grade that I bought and was happy to wear a pair of shorts that were not half way down to my knee. I'm 28. That's ridiculous.

Anyone interested in seeing my hideous, embarrassing, saggy, untoned, white legs?

AJBC Photography jean shorts summer confidence women

I am an idiot.

Hey- Disclaimer-In no way am I doing this to "show off" my body. And for those of you wondering about my body type history- I have always been skinny, naturally, to the point where people have told me that I am "unhealthy". Thanks? That makes me feel awesome. But I have no choice in this. I can down 2 beers, a 16 oz. ribeye, 2 sides, and deep fried oreos with icecream in 1 sitting. How do I know this? Bc it's been done.  I understand by me doing this there are people out there that will think I'm doing this for attention because of my size. I'm not.

And I guess that's my whole point.

Looking at myself now, in these shorts, I realize how STUPID I must have sounded for all these years. Did it really take me until I was 27 to realize I was crazy, I had nothing to hide, I had nothing to be ashamed of, that I was focusing on an idea of perfect in my head while I almost died of heat exhaustion? That my "ugly" legs were really not that bad???

If you think I sound stupid..... how do you think YOU sound?

And NO NO NO. You CAN NOT go, "yeah but..., but ME... see I.." But what? The idea you have of yourself, in your head, is the SAME idea and feeling I had inside MY HEAD. It is both of our "truths." How are you so sure your "truth" about your body and your image and you as a whole is not totally and completely stupid, untrue, and just your mind telling you lies, just like me???

Try to think just for one second that all the positive that people tell you really is true! Try to imagine that your fears, and your negative beliefs about yourself, and your inner skeptic has no real soul or purpose other than to make you think less of yourself and that those thoughts can so easily get warped and twisted in to a reality only you are aware of.

Looking back now, and all the times my mom had yelled at me to just put on a pair of shorts, I can't believe I spent about 12 years of my life thinking I should cover myself up more than the next girl. And let's be honest, I'm sure my body looked a lot better 12 years ago. ha!

You need to get over it, whatever IT is. GET OVER IT. Be happy. Realize we all have something we are dealing with. AND. I don't know if you haven't noticed, but about half the people you come across in any given day will not be focusing on the things we dwell on. You know what they will dwell on? I'm not even saying this to be cheesy- your smile (bc NO ONE smiles at people they don't know any more!) your friendly hello (bc, also, finding friendly people in the world is a challenge) and the way you walk in to a room, confidentially, and work it (bc there's nothing more pathetic than that girl who is constantly seeking attention to fulfill her ego.)

Own it. Work it. Be proud of it. And for the love of god, put on some damn shorts!!