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Strong and Proud

Nude female portrait painted in watercolor

"I saw my body as broken and weak for so long. I knew nothing apart from dance. It was all there was for so many years. Then my body let me down. I was 17 and felt as broken inside as I did on the outside.

As I packed my ballet shoes away and my life transformed from endless rehearsals to sitting still behind a reception desk, my body changed. Within a year I hardly recognized myself, I had no idea where the hips came from, but I did not like them! It took me the best part of 10 years to come to terms with this different body I was in, and it wasn’t until I found myself back in the dance studio that I finally accepted who I was.

I am strong. My body is sturdy and grounded. It is capable of so much more than my mind sometimes believes it is. Sometimes I doubt it, sometimes I’m unkind to it. But we are all we have, and I am thankful every day for all of the adventures we have been on together and will continue to go on.

So sure, maybe my boobs are a bit small and my belly has a little too much blub. But this body has carried me up volcanoes, through jungles to find lost cities, scuba dived with sharks, and jumped off cliffs into the ocean. We have survived earthquakes and scorpion stings, broken bones and auto-immune diseases. Heartbreak that rocked us deep to our core. And we’ve experienced so much joy and laughter.

So here I stand, strong and proud."


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