Miss T, An Unknown Journey

This is a throwback to the amazing Tamara's session. The transformation I have seen in this woman in the past 6 months has been incredible, so let's take it back...way back.

I met Tamara Brown through Erin Bogle owner of Big Girl YYC. Tamara almost drove me to an event, a stranger with a heart just wanting me to get to an event that I wasn't sure I could get to due to my car not working. Willing to drive all the way from the nw to the se then back to kensington simply to help a stranger in need (we realized much later that this is what our first connection was haha). THIS is a perfect description of this amazing woman, this simple (yet not simple) gesture. She goes out of her way to help those in need, she has the biggest heart I've had the pleasure to know, and she's an incredibly lovely woman.

Tamara and I connected one night through a group chat in here, it was fun and lighthearted, pretty sure a dance challenge took place that Erin started. Tamara and I started talking privately, she wanted to do a session but couldn't yet see she was worthy of such an experience. We spoke a couple times on the phone, about her why, about what she wanted captured, about how she was worthy of such an investment. I'm pretty sure Erin was cheering her on as well. She finally said ya know what I'll do this, what do I have to lose?

The thing was, she missed out on telling me a huge life event, one that would forever change her journey. 3 days before her session she announced through biggirlyyc/Erin that she had taken herself off of the bariatric list. For those that aren't aware, this is a major surgery to have your stomach shrunk with the sole purpose to lose weight. The program is very intense. Though Erin's group, Tamara learned that she can be a plus size woman, a female, a human, and take up space, command it, and not let anything get in her way.

After her huge and amazing announcement of profound self-love, love that took her from wanting to change herself through intense surgery to a point of self-love where she decided she was MORE than enough, that she was valuable and worthy just as she is. I mean, how was I going to top off and celebrate this very special moment in her life?! The pressure was ON.

Her session was intense, just like the blizzard that was outside on that February day. I kept trying to break her down (lovingly of course where she had no clue haha), to get her to move past a mask/role she was portraying, and then we got down to the deep part of who she was, one of peace, one of tears of joy. The true beautiful aspects of Tamara were captured, ones where I could see the real her, but I knew there was so much more to go yet.

I have spoken to Tamara about this since, but I had trouble editing the gallery though, nothing technical or anything, but I felt it wasn't her real story. There was more to tell, I knew it. So I asked her to come one day to the house, we were going to get creative.. use my families less than 100sq ft truck camper. I knew if anyone would be up for this, it would be her. That day was magic. I mean my house was a crazy place, my toddler son and husband were putting up our pool, my father in law was in the garage getting our car together, everything from the patio and the camper was all over the lawn and here I had Tamara being sexy in the camper for me. LMAO if that doesn't paint a picture of the session I don't know what would haha!!

So anyways, we got creative, we laughed so hard, and then after we did her Embrace session with the other ladies that night too. I legitimately was able to capture so many sides of Tamara that day, it was amazing.

Tamara let loose so much in the camper, being her true beautiful self. No mask, no persona, no role, the true blue Tamara that EVERYONE who meets her loves. She was about to see the real her and frick I was excited! I figured no one would believe that I could take amazing photos in this tiny retro camper, like it couldn't be possible, but I knew magic was made and I couldn't wait for Tamara to see!

Tamara cried during her reveal. She finally got to see herself, and not just once, but through 2 major stages in life. I am incredibly proud of this woman. She went from not seeing herself being worthy of much (in so many aspects, not just a session) to owning her journey, becoming one of the most self-aware people I know, working damn hard on getting to the next levels needed for her life. 

Tamara is a role model. Not just for plus size women, in fact it has nothing to do with that even if her journey started there. She's a role model for ALL women. That you can change your destiny with a switch of your mindset. That every day you have a choice to love yourself and you can start it at ANY time. That women are resilient, strong, loving, kind and fierce. That your limits are only what you put on yourself, that once you let those free, that once you let your bullshit excuses stop holding you back that you can become free. That it's hard work, not all days are easy as others, but that the self-love work is some of the most rewarding and profound work you will ever do.

So proud of you Tamara. So grateful to have you in my life and to call you my friend. I'm glad the universe connected us.

xoxo
Shan

(Please click on images to enlarge)

Empowerment Session


A celebration of life and body acceptance


Creative Shoot, 100 sq ft Camper.


Now that the fears and no expectations on who Tamara needed to be other than herself, she was able to let go, and let her true self shine. So proud of this woman.