The day finally arrived for me to have my Six Month Smile braces fitted, and I was a little nervous but excited. I wasn’t worried about it hurting, more paranoid about what it would look like and if I would dribble and lisp for the rest of the year. That’s priorities for you! It’s strange but whenever we’re injured, having treatment or going through some sort of change, it’s more often the outcome that we’re concerned about rather than the process; will it scar? Will it look better after? How long will it take? Without wanting to sound shallow, I wanted a brace that would be discreet with optimum ability to carry out the treatment in the shortest space of time, which is why the Six Month Smile appealed to me.
And now just a few days after my treatment I am talking normally, smiling once more and carrying on as normal. The only downside, if you can call it that, is because of the placement of my braces I can’t close my mouth to bite because my teeth will hit the lower brackets. So when I chew my teeth basically hover above one another and can’t touch no matter how hard I try. Imagine stroking a dog without actually putting your hand on it, just hovering above, that’s what my teeth are doing to my food. So as you can imagine it’s pretty difficult to eat right now, as I almost choked on some broth which was super tiny but still had to swallow it whole. It looks like I’ll be living on soups for the next six months which will no doubt do wonders for my hips, but I have a huge appetite and eat constantly throughout the day so it’s going to be a challenge to adjust. I was hoping to start a three month intensive workout plan this week but if I can’t eat properly then I won’t be able to sustain my energy and will just burn out. Oh dear.
I am however doing my charity bike ride which is in just under two weeks time. To prepare for the event I have purchased a cycling helmet, waterproof rucksack and a bottle holder so that Gabriele and I will be prepared for the 15mile trek. I received a lovely email from the charity that I am supporting, Wheel Power, asking if they could share our details on their Facebook page to help to raise awareness which I was happy for them to do. To think that Gabriele is only two years old and already about to undertake his first charity event just melts my heart. I have raised my 6yr old daughter to do the same, as she’s helped out at many events over the years, donated to collection pots and sponsored animals. I feel it’s important to raise children with an understanding of helping others, just as you would teach them to share their toys and speak politely to their peers, I believe they should also help and respect others in need and recognise their ability to make a difference to the world no matter how small. We are all capable of a good deed or a kind word, whether it’s holding open a door, carrying a bag, allowing somebody to cross on a busy road or putting some pennies in a collection pot, every little helps.
I’ve received some pictures and a video back from a photoshoot that I did with Detunephotography in the woods the other day. I’ve never been camping, I wouldn’t dream of walking bare foot out in a jungle of leaves and bugs, and with the weather being so cold and windy it was never my intention to step outdoors in a vest and knickers, but I have to say I loved it. I totally put myself out of my comfort zone to try something new and it really opened my eyes. To start with I was shivering with the cold but then my body adapted, when I stepped ankle deep into the leaves and plants barefoot and hit something soft or wet, I squealed at first but then it didn’t bother me, and laying on the ground with ants and spiders running over my legs freaked me out to start with but then it felt natural. I suddenly found myself a million miles away from my home comfort, cleanliness and security yet I was completely at ease after just a few minutes of adjustment. The woods were so peaceful, the light shining through the trees was stunning and the sounds, textures and feel of being alone in nature was hypnotic. I can totally see why people live in log cabins in the woods. There I was, rolling around in the leaves and dirt, smiling, laughing and hugging trees, no concern for the modern world, no mobile phones, no television, no media, just air in my lungs and sunlight on my skin and I wish it could have lasted forever.
This shoot was incredibly inspiring for me, not only did it fill me with peace, love and happiness but it showed me that I can overcome my fear of bugs and dirt and control the way that my body responds. If I feel at ease then I can put myself at ease, if I’m scared of something I can tell myself I’m not, and what my brain does my body follows. There is a great deal of self control involved in conquering fears. Not that I’m overtly religious as I don’t attend church, but I always remember these words that I read in the bible as a child: Luke 11:9-10 (9) And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. (10) For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. And I guess it really struck a chord with me and has stayed with me throughout my life.
It has been half term this week for which the children have been off of school, and surprise surprise the weather has been just as wet and cold as last week. So it’s been a bit of a washout and unfortunately we haven’t had the picnics in the park and walks that we’d hoped for. However we’ve been doing lots of indoorsy things together such as baking cakes, making homemade pizzas and bread, writing stories and watching Frozen. It seems the entire world has been captured by the magic of Frozen, which is a film about a Queen who has ice powers and hides it from her people so as not to scare them. It’s also a story of true love and happiness, and as Millie, Gabriele and I all cuddled up in our pyjamas on a duvet day watching it together it melted my heart to see their little faces light up over such a wonderful story and film. My children make me so proud everyday with their wonderful little ways and cheerful outlook on life. I am truly blessed to have them.
I wrote a blog for a company in Australia called Skinny Tan, which is a self-tanner that you can do from home that lasts a week and is absolutely flawless. I took this picture to show how my tan looked at the end of the week to show that amazingly after showering daily I still had such a lovely colouring on the final day and my social media literally exploded. I have had thousands of messages, emails and marriage proposals would you believe it! And I check my profiles and laugh in amazement at the sheer volume of traffic generated from this photo. Last week I reported on my Instagram profile reaching 2,000 followers, which the average profile has around a hundred followers or so, for which I tend to gain several a week which is a very healthy amount. In just seven days I now have over 5,000 followers and receive on average one every couple of minutes. Wow.
Now you could say that some followers are interested in more than just my tan, as I am in shorts and a bra to show the colour coverage of my body. But why shouldn’t I? I would never share anything online that I wasn’t comfortable with saying, doing or showing to the world. And for me, I believe so long as you are covered to the extent that you would be on a public beach then you are no different to the millions of other people in the world who do the same. Granted not everybody would like to share their beach body photos online, but a vast amount do. My body isn’t perfect but I am proud to say that I am a mother of two, and after various corrective surgeries to medical problems I am now in an alright condition. I’ve learnt to take care of my skin very recently, and make an effort to take more pride in my appearance since becoming a single parent. In essence I’ve gone from washed out mother duck to sparkly swan in several months and why the heck shouldn’t I? I’m still me, I still have my heart and soul and outlook on life, I’m just better maintained and more at ease with showing my skin. That’s not to say that I’m about to start doing my weekly shop in hotpants and nipple tassels, but actually I can be happy in my skin, be grateful for the youth and body that I have and be able to blog and post pictures like this online knowing that one day in my retirement I’ll give myself a high five and think to myself “good on you girl!” because you only live once. I’m not harming anybody, I’m not asking anything of others, I’m simply showing women across the world that you can hit rock bottom in love and confidence and then get right back up and rebuild yourself stronger and better than ever before. Becoming a mother, becoming single and getting older doesn’t mean that I’m going to give up on myself, I’m still human, I’m still allowed to be attractive and feminine and dress like my peers. I am a strong believer in natural beauty, and aside from my breasts which I purchased at eighteen as mine didn’t form properly, the rest of my body is completely natural. Yes at twenty-six I have applied my own fake tan for the first time, but every summer, just like everybody else I would get a tan from the sun anyway, it’s just safer this way as there’s no risk of skin cancer or burning.
And yes I’ve posted pictures of my skin online, but tell me how many people oogle at others in the street, stare at your cleavage when they speak to you or check out your arse in a pair of skinny jeans when you walk past? So many, and they’re not even discreet about it either, it’s almost acceptable behaviour in public now for men to wolf whistle at a girl across the street, call out after you when you walk past and blatantly eye a girl up and down face to face; there’s a saying “take a picture it lasts longer” so that’s what I’ve done. You’ll never stop people from looking if that’s what they want to do, but you can however control how people see it. I choose to blog and capture images of body confidence, a positive female form and natural beauty, a smile, a shape, angle or perspective. Life is a form of art and there is nothing more amazing than the human body, for all of it’s quirks, variations and abilities to change and develop. People post pictures of their cars on forums, congregate over breeds of dog or gardening abilities, so why shouldn’t we appreciate the female form? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and we’re all entitled to our own opinion.
So forget what other people think and do what makes you happy. If you like wearing your hair in pigtails then have pigtails, if you want to grow a handlebar moustache then grow that fabulous moustache, and if you choose to wear something that you’re comfortable with, so long as you’re not exposing yourself to people, then go ahead and wear whatever makes you happy. Life would be incredibly boring if we all dressed, acted and responded in the very same way. People shouldn’t get bullied or treated differently for being an individual, as it is the collection of millions of different people, personalities and appearances that makes this world so beautiful and diverse. We are all unique with the freedom to lead our life how we choose to, so don’t let others rain on your parade.