Sometimes I wonder to myself, “Why am I posting naked pictures of myself on the internet?” Am I some kind of exhibitionist? Do I want attention? What’s the point?” NO. I realized during a writing reflection session that I am sharing my naked soul to create a personal history and to be part of something great.
I find myself searching hard and long for a wide range or balance of stories about clothes free experiences, soulful shares that go beyond sexual posts or piles of judging rants. I look for what this clothes free life does for people on the inside, how it shifts their way of being, what they gain, who they are. But as my yoga teachers say, how can I ask these things of others if I myself don’t contribute? And I’m hungry to create and share soulful conversations.
A little personal history – When I was a kid my family had a lot of financial instability. We literally had to walk out of our homes several times and leave everything behind, save one trash bag of belongings per person. I’ll never forget the last time that happened. I remember looking back at my bedroom for the last time before disappearing: bed fully made, markers on desk, stuffed animals staring blankly at me, academic medals draping the walls. I left it all behind, because we had to go. That personal lack of continuous history plus the general African American experience of disjointed unrecorded history, for me, contributed to a lack of connection to existence itself. No one in my family knows where we come from and we don’t have that many pictures of our lives. I never really got into the habit of carrying a camera and stopping every 2 seconds to take pictures. We kept moving, leaving stuff and people behind. After a while all I could count on, all I could carry was the present.
You guys know I love yoga, right? It means a lot to me, especially for the work that happens within. Anyway, I hear a lot in yoga about being present, being here now. That’s all people in my current environment talk about these days. But sometimes I ask, “What about legacy? What about lineage, context, belonging?” I want to create that. I don’t want to only have the present. I want to see who I’ve been, where I was, who was there, and observe life unfold over and over again. Documenting my clothes free journey gives me that opportunity to review evidence of my life and what clothes free life has done for me over time, because it has taken me through all kinds of ringers. I want to remember that. I treasure that.
I’ve also not spent much time truly seeing and observing myself. I mean, I’ve been in front of mirrors throughout my life, usually to judge my physical appearance – how it looked in clothes or whether I had lost weight. But I never really just observed or watched myself quietly. Once I began my clothes free journey, I got curious to see my truth and take note of deeper things. I had many unhealthy ideas of who I was in the past: fat, ugly, unwanted, unimportant, weird, forgotten, NONEXISTENT. But engaging in my clothes free life brought me face to face with the fact that I am alive and active, that I am a part of something more. It gave me an opportunity to see my truth, and to allow that truth to displace self-deprecating speech. I wanted to document that.
On a physical level, over these past months of my clothes free debut, I also realized just how beautiful I am…not by anyone’s standards or because someone said so. I look at myself and watch footage of myself, and I see myself existing, breathing, connecting, moving, alive. I think, “WOW! I am a force of nature!” I literally believe I am beautiful, because I see who I am and how I’m being.
Then there is the sharing of all this. Why am I doing it, again? I talked about wanting to create history for myself. I talked about wanting evidence of my true inner and outer beauty and being alive. Yes, documenting my clothes free life does all that. But why am I on the internet with it? Well, I want to contribute to a growing library of deep soulful conversations about the power of clothes free life. I want people, wherever they are in their life, to encounter this possibility, the option to live clothes free and experience major shift in their own lives. I want to support conversations and discussions about how stepping outside of nudity=sex(and only sex) opens up a world of wonder, things I never thought possible from inside myself or in how I’m being with others.
I’m recording this life and sharing it with others in word and in image to be part of something great. There is so much more to clothes free life than sex and attention. And to be a part of these conversations where folks talk about how healing it is, how it helps people focus while working, how calming and peaceful it is, how folks become aware of their impact on the environment, how they open up to others more authentically…that’s powerful.
I am alive. I am active. I have history. We are creating a healthy conversation about clothes free life around the world.