FGG Photo of the Week: Make a Statement
Posted by Toni in Photo of the Week
Photo by Midnighteskye

**Be sure to read today's entire post for the results of our Eden Fantasys Giveaway**

We have several new photos and members in our FGG Girls Flickr Group (welcome, girls!). This image by Midnightskye caught my eye when I visited the group recently (where we have a great discussion going about photo post-processing basics if you have any tips and tricks to share).

I thought, "She looks like me!" when I clicked over to view the photo. The description says, "I know I have stretch marks, I'm a big girl, I was going to edit them, but they are a part of who I am." Yesssss! That's the attitude we strive for here at FGG. But even Tee and I aren't "all moxie, all the time" (though we do strive for "most of the time").

I have always been self-conscious of my stretch marks, and I think seeing someone put them out there with neither apology nor shame tugged hard at the pull chain to my light bulb. I immediately recalled a favorite quote, which comes from the brilliant television show The Wire, when Walon (played by the awesome Steve Earle) says to Bubbles (played by "Why does this man not have an Emmy for his performance on The Wire?!?" Andre Royo):
Shame ain't worth as much as you think. Let it go.

I may have fallen out of my chair when I heard that line, because I've felt ashamed of my body since hitting puberty. I started dieting at an age (12) and size (5) where I had no business doing so, because all of the girls and women around me were starving and hating on themselves, including my mother. It's really only been over the past year or so that I've started actively working to appreciate my physical self, stretch marks and all - including ditching the little self-deprecating remarks about every self-perceived flaw. Because those "flaws" are indeed a part of who I am. I'm even putting myself out there more than ever this year by doing a year of self portraits - some candid, some artful - as a way of taking my self back. I might even muster the courage to strike a pose like Midnighteskye some time in 2010 (sorry, Mom!).

What about you? I know that body shame is not the sole province of fat girls (my skinny friends worry over their post-baby stretch marks, forty-something crow's feet and southern-facing breasts, too), and many of you simply adore your curvy selves. But for those of you struggling with shame in any area of your lives, can you get inspired to put yourself out there more this week and drop-kick shame to the curb? I challenge you do to ONE THING this week that nudges you to "let it go." Post a photo that represents this act to the FGG Girls Flickr Group or post a comment telling us how you did.

Special Announcement! We have a winner of our Eden Fantasys giveaway! Our random drawing from commenters who mentioned chocolate is Fat Nurse! Congratulations, girl! You are the lucky owner of the "Better Than Chocolate" clitoral vibrator (now there's a phrase I never envisioned writing in my career). Tee has emailed you so we can send it your way. Congratulations! Thanks to everyone who played along!