This past year I've had the great pleasure of meeting some amazing women. Life has thrown some hard punches at me in my personal life and these women have been there to cushion the blows and lift me up at my low points.
Jess Legaspi is one of these women.
I wrote a little something about my experience in working with her for her blog and I want to share it here, with you, as well.
I bought my photo session with Jess in September of last year on a day when I was feeling confident and beautiful. I needed new headshots for my website and knew Jess was the one to call, so I did.
In the weeks that followed my chat with Jess I was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome), and the doctor gave me the news that my chances of bearing children were now greatly reduced. I was devastated. Even though I kept reading articles and blogs about women that had been able to find ways to get pregnant, I felt alone, hopeless, and most of all I felt ugly. It was as if the doctor had told me I was not beautiful and that PCOS made me less of a woman.
I kept rescheduling my photoshoot and making excuses, but the jist of it was that I just wasn't feeling myself. I began to question whether I should even continue with my business. I am a hair and makeup artist who’s job it is to help women feel empowered and beautiful. I am supposed to remind them of how beautiful they were created to be, yet I couldn’t look in the mirror and see that in myself. I felt like a fraud.
After fighting with my own self over it for almost SIX MONTHS, I finally scheduled my shoot with Jess. She met with me a couple of days before my shoot to talk about my business and things got real deep. I told her about my experiences and my doubts and about how I felt like a hypocrite. She looked at me and said, “Martha, that doesn’t make you a hypocrite. That makes you experienced. It makes you real.” We talked about my vision for my business and how I wanted that to be captured in this photoshoot; and you know what? She just got it. She understood how much I needed to see how beautiful I am and that I am powerful and capable.
Its amazing how photos can speak to you that way. I see these photos and I like them! I love the way I look and I can see beyond my diagnosis; beyond my weight; beyond my flaws.
I am beautiful.
I am strong.
I am feminine.
I am capable.
Thank you for helping me open my eyes Jess. I have never felt so comfortable in my own skin, let alone in front of a camera! What you do with your gift and with photographs speaks to the soul.