Don’t You Shop Me!

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I don’t like photoshopped pictures. 

But probably not for the reasons you’re thinking. I’ll leave the arguments about wither or not they create unrealistic expectations and cultivate unrealistic self images to the thousands of writers who’ve already brought them up. For me, the real issue is that photoshop takes away your body’s story.

There’s a pic of Britney Spears, who, apparently from dancing, has some bruises on her leg. Photoshop – poof! No more bruises. Victoria’s Secret models? Too fit! They need more curves and so they photoshop some in. Those muscles they got from hours at the gym? Scar from second grade? Tattoo? Tan Lines? Gone!

I didn’t realize how anti-photoshop I was until a photographer friend touched up a picture he took of me. He smoothed out my tan, added some shiny life to my hair, and took away all my moles and this weird scar I’ve had on my face since I was a teen. I barely recognized myself! And not in the good way.

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That girl is pretty, but she’s got no story. Where’d she come from? What does she do? Does she look like her mom or her dad? I can’t tell. And that’s why I don’t like photoshop.

——-

For the first time in my life I have a body that I’m proud of. And that body includes pole kisses, a nearly eternal bruise on the top of my left foot from pole climbs, thighs that have gotten bigger thanks to gaining some muscle (I actually had to go up a size in my skinny jeans) and a variety of scars and weird marks from all sorts of accidents (have I mentioned I’m an awkward giraffe?).

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I’m far from perfect, or even where I want to be, but it would feel like an insult to my body for all the work it’s done to just photoshop out the parts I don’t like. Even the part I hate most… my stomach.

Dozens of pole conditioning classes later, I still think I look a couple months preggers, and I hate that no matter what I do I can’t get rid of the pooch beneath my belly button – but that’s what it looks like. And I’m doing everything I can to make it better, so what is there to be embarrassed about? To prove how anti-shopping I am, here.. my most hated body part in all it’s unaltered glory.

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Now that will probably haunt me for the rest of my internet days. #ohwell

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