Cover-Up: Anthropologie Aracari Mesh Cover-Up
Swimsuit: J. Crew Caspian Paisley Bandeau Tank
"Eyes wide open. Naked as we came." - Iron and Wine
It's almost Fall, and I'm pretty sure I'm suppose to be posting pictures of myself in sweaters, tights, boots, and the like, even though there is barely a chill in the air. Yet, here I am in a swimsuit. You see, mid-September is my favorite time to go to the beach. The temperature is comfortable, the sun is less powerful, and, most importantly, there is less people. I know, I know. I'm from Eastern North Carolina, so I'm suppose to live to go to the beach every weekend during the Summer. However, I'm not your typical Eastern North Carolinian. Hell, I'm not your typical person.
The beach makes me very uncomfortable. Well, more accurately, the beach is great, it's the people that make me uncomfortable. It's just so weird to me how we are expected to cover up in clothes when we go out in society except when we go to this one special place where there is sand and water. Yes, I know we are technically still covered, but I see a lot of things I don't see on a everyday basis when I go to the beach. People's crotches, butt cracks, boobs, and fat rolls are hanging out or, in some cases, on full display, and then there's the scary thought of putting my own body out there. When it comes to the beach set, hard and tan bodies are the ideal, and my body is about as far from that as you can get. I've got some pretty old school shit going on with my soft curves and pasty white skin. It usually takes me about 30 minutes before I get the nerve to take my cover-up off and then another hour before I will actually get up and walk around in my swimsuit. It's just so stressful for me, and it's the reason why I don't go to the beach that often.
I know this sounds funny, but my fear of naked people is something that I'm really trying to work on. I'm not exactly sure where it came from. I mean, it's not like I'm conservative in other aspects of my life. I think it was a combination of things. My mom has never been a fan of naked people. If she sees even a hint of cleavage, she freaks out and starts pulling up my top, and God forbid, if we have to be subjected to a complete stranger's cleavage. She bitches about how disturb she was by it for hours afterwards. Her definition of the beach is "that sinful place where everybody goes and gets naked." So, yeah, there's that. Then, there's my general lack of self-confidence which makes me think that every woman's body is better than mine. This leads to me comparing myself and not measuring up and then it just goes downhill from there. It's all very exhausting, and it has trained me to just cover up and avoid naked people at all cost.
I don't think this is a healthy way to be, so I'm trying to push myself out of my comfort zone. I'm not going to lie, though, it's hard. When I'm watching TV shows like Boardwalk Empire and boobies come up on the screen, my first inclination is to look away or fast forward through the scene, but these days I'm forcing myself to just look at the boobies. I know how silly this sounds, but I'm telling you, I'm fucked up when it comes to naked people. My reaction to naked men is even worse. They usually just make me laugh hysterically.
This is my second time posting photos of myself in a swimsuit on the blog, and I think that this time was even more difficult than the last. I've sat on this post for awhile, terrified to hit publish. For one thing, I've put on some weight. Also, I have on a one piece this time which adds even more to my "mom in a swimsuit" mystique. Looking at these pictures, I find myself wanting Jerry to put them in Photoshop and thin out my waist, erase all the cellulite, and just make me better. However, that would be defeating the purpose. The purpose is to love and accept myself just the way I am. My daughter is always telling me, "You're beautiful, mommy, just the way you are." It's time I start believing it.
Iron Wine - Naked As We Came