Thank you for teaching me how to love myself.

I figure it's about time I share a little bit about my own self love journey with y'all..

I grew up with parents who loved me fiercely, parents who weren't biologically mine. I was adopted right after birth then given back up for adoption shortly after due to some crazy circumstances that I'll never really understand- and that's where my now-parents found me. I share that with you because I really believe that experience planted some very strong themes of feeling inadequate and like I just never belonged. I distinctly remember laying in bed as a girl, maybe around age 9-10 and grabbing and pulling at my stomach so hard that it left marks, crying because I hated my body so much.

As I got older, I was incredibly aware of the fact that my body was much rounder than my friends. I compared myself with every single girl I knew, certain that I just wasn't as pretty, as good, as ANYTHING as them. Let me tell you, these feelings did NOT lead me to make great choices as a teen and even in my early 20's. I longed to be loved and accepted, leading me to look for that in some very bad places and in some very unhealthy ways.

I really don't think it was until I had my daughter that I realized just how crazy all of those beliefs were. I wanted something vastly different for her and knew that to teach her that, I had to change my own thinking. I'd been really working on my self image for a while when I started my Boudoir business, but so much of my healing has come with my JNP journey! Watching each of our girls come in and celebrate their beautiful selves, it has just been so powerful for me! This work has changed my life in so many ways, but the changes I've had internally, especially around my self perception have just been amazing. Encouraging each of you to grow, to love every single bit of your body has caused me to do just the same. 

So really, thank you ladies. Thank you for being on this journey with me. <3

Very special, very BIG thank you to Ashlee Guest of Sincerely You Portraits in Lake Jackson, TX for the beautiful images of me shared here.

Xoxo,

Jen