Marissa....my whole time with you was nothing but fun....how much laughing did we have?!
You are beautiful, giving, kind and so funny.....
Here is Marissa's story
"I’m not really sure where to start with this.
I have never liked having my photograph taken, and always try to avoid the camera.
I am extremely self-critical and self-conscious.
I avoid looking in the mirror, let alone posing for photographs.
Shopping for clothes or getting ready for a night out fills me with dread because I know I will be uncomfortable, and frustrated with the way I look.
I can actually say that I HATED my body.
I’m only 32 but I often feel a lot older than that.
After giving birth to 6 beautiful children I have gained more than a few excess lbs. I have been left with an extremely unattractive ‘baby belly’, sagging boobs (which isn’t helped by the sheer size of them), a wobbly bum and thighs, and stretch marks all over my tummy. I have a double chin and I have grey hair.
And, after having an accident last year that resulted in me breaking both sides of my right ankle, having surgery to have metal implants inserted, and then 8 weeks later suffering a potentially fatal pulmonary embolism ….. I have been left with some rather large scars and one ankle is now larger than the other, which prevents me from being able to wear certain shoes, including heels!
I have never been very confident, but since having children any self confidence that I did have has completely disappeared.
I dress in baggy, dark coloured clothes to try and ‘hide’. I spend all of my time making sure everyone else is okay, cooking, cleaning, washing dishes, doing laundry, grocery shopping, doing school runs, helping with homework, etc etc.
One of my children has a rare genetic disorder which causes him to have additional needs and many autistic traits. I have to try to make sure that we are organised and that we stick to our routine to try and limit his anxiety.
There isn’t any time for putting on make-up and styling my hair.
There isn’t any time for ME.
Don’t get me wrong …. I love my family more than life itself and have had some really good experiences over the years. But there is going to be no record of those good times for my children to look back on if I am always hiding from the camera.
I want that to change.
I don’t want to spend the rest of my life hating my own reflection.
I want to be confident and be able to have my photograph taken so that I can make memories with my family.
I want to like myself again.
So, after seeing images that other people had shared from their Red Shoe experiences, I took a deep breath and booked my makeover.
It was the best decision I have ever made.
Even though I was incredibly nervous on the day of my photoshoot Sarah and Mandy made me feel completely at ease.
I wasn’t sure how I would cope in front of the camera. I’m not naturally photogenic, and my biggest fear was that I would be the first Red Shoe ‘failure’.
What if they couldn’t make me look good in my photographs?
What if I was just a big, fat mess?
I didn’t need to worry.
Sarah made me feel relaxed, and even had me laughing! But most importantly she made me feel beautiful, and dare I say it ….. SEXY!
They aren’t words that I thought I would be using to describe myself any time soon, but that is exactly how these images make me feel about myself.
By the end of my shoot I was actually enjoying being photographed and didn’t want it to end.
I was having FUN!
If someone had told me 6 months ago that I would be having a photoshoot and would enjoy posing for the photographs I would have laughed in their face!
But that is exactly what happened, and I would do it all again in a heartbeat.
When Sarah sent me the photographs I couldn’t believe it.
I sobbed the whole time I looked through them.
The only thing that was big and fat were the happy tears I cried.
I never knew that I could look (and feel) like this!
There aren’t enough words to express how incredibly grateful I am to Sarah and Mandy. They have this totally amazing gift to help women feel confident in their own skin.
Sarah, Mandy, you have literally changed my life, and I love you for it."