In my last post, I realized I published another first venture out – an actual full Vermonty photo. I never thought I would, so why did I?
Two posts ago, I talked about how I think about a lot of things and I led off with authenticity. As someone who was born a nudist, I know that there is no issue with the unadorned body. But, I’ve also swallowed a lot of the prevailing messaging that links all forms of nudity with shame. So, if I truly want to advocate for the principles of nudism that have been built for nearly a century in this country, was I being authentic to my worldview by keeping part of me hidden? And what was my hangup that led me to keep myself hidden?
The hangup, quite easily, was fear of judgment from the outer world. Fear that the wrong person will somehow try to use this against me. But as an advocate for nudism, the principles of non-sexual nudity in social situations, what am I, really, if I don’t own the fight? We have but one life to share, so it makes sense to make the most of it. In doing so, I am honoring the deepest part of my spirit, my truly authentic self. There’s little worse in my book than hypocrisy.
Folks, accepting myself as a nudist has been one of the most rewarding aspects of my existence. When I struggled with body image (which still creeps in) and was treating my body poorly, it was embracing the nudist part of my life that saved me from myself. I’m not a nudist to be seen, but if being seen helps someone else accept themselves, however they show up in life, then I am doing the best I can to spread the core values of nudism. I am paying back those within the movement who helped me find self- and body-acceptance. And, in turn, I am making myself whole.
If you’re a beginner, here’s what I find beneficial about nudism:
- A supportive, non-judgmental community that helps you accept yourself where you are in the moment.
- A feeling of freedom like no other, especially when in nature connected to the water, wind, soil, and sun.
- A spiritual connection to existence that I never found within the confines of the walls of the religion in which I was raised.
- A journey of self-acceptance about a body I haven’t always appreciated.
- A connection with my truest self, the me I was born to be.
Not everyone was born to be this way. Some people make the choice. I think that the choice aspect is what creates discrimination against people like us. People tend to feel okay with bigotry against something different from themselves if they feel or believe that the person could just choose to change who they are. But whether it’s part of your DNA or you’ve made it part of your life, you deserve to live freely without discrimination or harassment. You deserve to be able to enjoy the fruitful tenets of the naturist/nudist movement that has been paved for us until now.
You deserve to be yourself, however you show up in life. Living honestly can set you free.