Each year around this time, a friend of mine and friends of his throw a huge birthday party in celebration of Scorpio season. The first year I attended was in 2011. It was 3 months before my the beginning of my lifestyle change. I had just colored my hair back to red and was finally beginning to crawl out of the nightmare of a life I had created for myself in the previous few years.I was starting to feel a little bit better about life, not even knowing how awesome it was about to get, and went to the party. I knew most of girls in attendance would be models as the guys hosting the party were mostly musicians, artists, and photographers. I had fun with my friends that night but I would absolutely be lying if I didn’t admit I was very insecure. Even so, I did have fun, but I avoided full body pictures and am pretty sure even though I was drunk, I didn’t dance.
I didn’t go in 2012 because I had just crushed my 100lbs down goal and was trying to get to a 50% weight loss. A night out drinking, most likely followed up with greasy food to prevent a hangover, was not going to contribute to my goals, so I opted out.
I didn’t go in 2013 because I was officially half my starting weight and felt entirely insecure about my loose skin. At that point I was trying, and failing, at accepting this was just the way my body was going to be from now on.
I didn’t go in 2014 because I was only 5 weeks post op beltectomy and thigh lift and could barely stand up straight and walk at a normal pace. Partying was the last thing I needed to do.
I didn’t go in 2015 because I had put on 10lbs in the year after my surgery and spent that fall feeling incredibly insecure and embarrassed that I had gained weight.
But when this year came around I was back to what I weighed when I went in for skin removal, completely healed, and out of excuses not to go. I committed to my friends I would be there.
When I got the official invitation it read that this years theme was “bathrobes and baewatch.” It would be a pool party and the invite said “dress code is robes or bathing suits- no exceptions.”
When I saw that, i considered not going. I go to the beach (the nude beach, even) all the time but I am surrounded by normal people at the beach. At this party I’d be surrounded by super hotties. So then I thought, maybe I should go but just ignore the dress code. I figured because my friend was hosting, he would let me in anyways. But the more I thought about it, I realized it was an opportunity to get over myself. If I showed up in a regular outfit not only would I be allowing fear and insecurities to continue to dictate my decision making, but it would be the equivalent of wearing a sign that says “I am too insecure about my body to wear a swimsuit in public.” I didn’t want to be the one woman there, not in a bikini, and also look like the most insecure woman there as well. I posted my plans on Facebook, for accountability so I couldn’t bitch out, and got to picking out a bathing suit.
To my surprise, I was one of the one women who wore a damn bathing suit! If this had been last year, or any other year for that matter, I’d have been mortified. None of my friends ended up wearing bathing suits as most of them are new moms still adjusting to their new bodies,too. A couple girls wore bikini tops. Another couple girls wore g-strings and see through lingerie that showed off their giant boobs and high nipples and their cellulite free giant asses. So here I was, in the middle of a party, looking like I was the one out of dress code. I couldn’t help but notice I was pretty much the only woman who wasn’t wearing pants that was covered in cellulite and scars.
And to my surprise…. I didn’t care. I had my bathrobe and a sarong with me just incase I felt insecure and I never took them out, until after I was cold from going down the water slide at 3am, anyway. I talked to and danced with strangers. I confused people who had met me pre-lifestyle change and had no idea who the hell I was. I went in a hot tub with 6 people I’d never seen before in my life. I danced on a stripper pole while waiting for the bathroom. I let my thighs jiggle and didn’t worry about keeping my cover up closed to hide my stretch marks, fake belly button, and thigh lift scars. And I had a freaking amazing time.
A few years ago if I was one of only a few people to show up at a party nearly naked and the only one who’s body didn’t look like society’s standards of beauty, I’d have hopped in the first uber home. This past weekend, I didn’t care.
For the longest time I have been chasing this feeling of not giving a shit what anyone thinks about my body. Intellectually I know it doesn’t matter, but emotionally, it bothers me to feel judged. To overcome this I post photos of it on the internet, I go to the beach in teeny bikinis, I go to the beach entirely freaking nude, and yet I still feel vulnerable in places that my mind has previously decided are reserved for “hot girls.” But this weekend I went to the “hot girl” party and felt like I was one of the hot girls. I posed for pictures and didn’t feel the need to hide behind anyone or suck it in or change my outfit or any of that BS.
The party’s intention may have been to celebrate some birthdays and Scorpio season but for me it was a celebration of finally, truly, not giving a shit about anyone’s judgement of my body because I am finally proud of my body. I know it doesn’t fit everyone’s beauty standard but I also know how hard I work for this body. I know how strong it is and what it’s capable of. I know a strechmark or a scar or a couple dimples doesn’t undo all I have done to earn this. Next time I get invited to a party, I might just show up with no pants regardless of dress code. ☺️😋