LILLY WITH WATER LILLIES

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HOW DID IT FEEL TO BE PHOTOGRAPHED NUDE ?

I normally don’t like having my photo taken, whenever the lens is directed my way I get extremely uncomfortable which results in an awkward dance. This experience was extremely comfortable and surprisingly easy.
I don’t think the experience would have changed if I were clothed, nudity has never been a big deal to me. 

I think this photoshoot was planned for a year, I can remember the first time you asked me to model it was going to be in 4 days. I went and signed up to a gym with my unrealistic idea that I could get toned body within that time period. We ended up doing the shoot a year later and before that shoot I went into a state of searching through all your other photoshoots from this series to see what the other models looked like. I can remember searching for evidence to see if I should wear makeup or shave my pubic hair. 
The photoshoot was such a beautiful experience for me, especially after seeing the photos and feeling beautiful within the photographs. From a young age I have struggled with my body image and eating disorders, so it is incredible to have all of my insecurities portrayed in such a beautiful way.

I AM : Lilly

I WAS BORN : 

22/02/1996

 

DO YOU BELIEVE IN STAR SIGNS ? 

My Sun is Pisces, rising is Scorpio and moon is Aries. 

I believe in star signs to a certain extent, I have always felt like a true Pisces. I find it truly romantic to identify where the planets were when you were born, and how that affects your personality and traits.
As for horoscopes, they can be extremely helpful and accurate. I do believe they are generic statements but provide you with the ability to seek or validate certain information. I also find myself thinking or acknowledging certain feelings or thoughts I didn’t realise I had through horoscopes.

 
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HOW COMFORTABLE ARE YOU WITH NUDITY (WITH YOURSELF AND WITH OTHERS) ?

Nudity has never been an issue with me, I think nursing has eradicated any potential stigma I had about the naked body. Now I just see it as the largest organ we have. This is a blessing and a curse I guess, I no longer have that excited/nervous feeling when seeing an intimate partner naked for the first time which I do miss. 

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IF YOU COULD WRITE A LOVE LETTER TO YOUR BODY :

Gosh, this is something I still struggle with, but I am getting better at it. I find it difficult to love my body as I have so much ingrained hate for it.
The body part I have struggled with the most are my hips, so I guess to them for starters I would like to apologise for all the times I have squeezed, hit and said awful things about you. You are beautiful and soft, I can see the peaks of a wave within you, the arch of a rainbow, and the crest of a mountain.  

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HAVE YOU EVER EXPERIENCED A HARDSHIP OF THE HEART OR MIND WHERE YOU WERE GRATEFUL OF YOUR BODY'S ABILITY TO CARRY YOU ? OR ALTERNATIVELY, HAVE YOU EXPERIENCED THE OPPOSITE, WHERE YOU FELT YOUR BODY LET YOU DOWN ?

I am grateful for my body in times of severe loss and sadness. I feel like I have lost a lot of people I love and care about within my short life, and even when my heart and soul feels like it has been ripped apart my body has always had the ability to keep functioning and carrying me. 

On the other hand, I have had severe disappointment with my body. Recently I have been diagnosed with Hashimoto's disease and Hypothyroidism. Although I have felt severely ill for as long as I can remember and searching for answers, I don’t think I was ready to hear that I actually had a disease. 

I neglected the idea of being ill for a few months after being diagnosed. I took my friends to my favourite beach in Byron, one that I went to all the time, and when we were walking back to the car I couldn’t make it up the hill. I completely broke down that day, I sat down crying on the silly staircase that I would walk up all the time. I think that was the first day that I acknowledged my disease, I remember telling my friends how much I hated my body. 

Until this moment I never realised that your body and mind coexist together. I never understood that my body and mind were separate until it felt like my body was failing and letting me down. 

DESCRIBE AN EXPERIENCE WHERE YOUR BODY GAVE YOU IMMENSE JOY ..

I would have to say the euphoric feeling when you are with someone you absolutely love and adore, and you can feel the love swelling in your chest.

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WHAT IS YOUR SUPER POWER ?

I love how deeply I care about people. I also hate it, it’s a very conflicting trait. I often have to remind myself that this is my personality and the way that I care for people, however it is not how everyone automatically cares, or is capable of caring to this degree. 

A WOMAN YOU ADMIRE WITH SUPER POWERS :

I have a myriad of wonderful women within my life that I admire. All that have shaped me to who I am today. I truly believe I am the creation of all the loving relationships I have had with women throughout my life. I draw all of my inspiration from them, they are my greatest joy and comfort. As for super powers, all women are incredibly powerful and durable!

 
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MOST INFURIATING FEMME FOCUSED IDEOLOGY YOU HAVE FOUND RESTRICTIVE / DAMAGING / LUDICROUS ?

There are too many to mention! 

The stigma around women’s body hair is mind-numbingly absurd, I have had men offer to shave their armpits, so I will shave mine. Imagine living a life being repulsed of something that happens naturally. 

The gender discrimination against beauty products is ridiculous! Is the a pink plastic razor really more expensive to make than a black plastic razors? 

Also, razor commercials have only ever portrayed women ~shaving~ perfectly smooth, airbrushed legs until Billie, somehow it is the only company that has acknowledged and portrayed female body hair. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P4DDpS685iI

 

HOW DOES IT FEEL TO BE WOMAN ?

As a white cis woman my experiences would be extremely different to others. For me I wouldn’t want it any other way, I feel so privileged to be a women and part of a beautiful accepting community (of women). In saying that I, and many women I know, have had to go through extreme hardships from the society we live in. There is still an abundance of ingrained systemic misogyny that is left from the women who fought before us. We all need to continue the fight to ensure that all women regardless of the sex assigned at birth, ethnicity, race, religion, and sexuality are equally treated and valued and protected.

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