The first day that I entered a pole studio as a student, I became more than just a student of pole. I became a student in body positivity, self-love, and a new type of confidence I had yet to embrace. I would do moves, crack jokes, and swear that there was not a sexy bone in my body.

Growing up, I was the brain…the geek…the one that people looked to for answers…the one that annoyed people because I was a know-it-all. I was a tomboy who got along with everyone because I could crack jokes and play sports with the boys. I was the homie…that felt like a linebacker in a dress when I would get dolled up.  As I got older (circa 2001 and then again in 2008), I grew a love for fitness (I had to find something to balance out my love for food) and I grew to be strong.  I hadn’t embraced my body or my looks up until that point. My confidence was an internal one, and I believed that was all I needed to walk this Earth with my head held high. I did not realize how much I battled the external world, until I had to really look at myself in a mirror and embrace the beauty within.

At one point, an instructor had me walk up to the mirror and just look at myself and let go of all of the negative commentary that I had running through my head. “I’m not sexy, I’m goofy.” I was put on this planet to make people smile and to hold deep, intellectual conversations. I had utter confidence with clothes on, but to shed layers and be comfortable in my skin? Well…that was a whole different journey.

October 2015 was around the time of my rebirth. We all hear the story of the caterpillar that transforms into a beautiful butterfly. Well…October 2015 is when I entered my cocoon, and did not emerge again until I sprouted my wings. It took almost a whole year for me to put on something sexy and really FEEL and BELIEVE that I was a beautiful, empowered woman, who could walk around in her sports bra and panties and KNOW that I am beautiful. I learned how to love me, and it was a process. I still struggle with negative commentary at times, and I have incredible pole moves and yoga to thank for helping me escape those thoughts. I share my pole and yoga journey, not for anyone to be impressed, but for someone to be inspired. To see a woman who is not ashamed of her body, and who is confident in sharing her successes and her failures. To show that she will rise up and try again each time, with more effort.

There is so much more to this life than what we are aware. Finding something that challenges you daily to grow, to be a better person, to change, to embrace your “YOU”…that is what life is about. So come and grow with me, with us, with the studio. Where you are accepted as you are, and welcome to grow into the woman you desire to be!