The Bikini and The Beast: Getting Naked

6pm yesterday I get a call from my commercial agent. “You have an audition tomorrow. Please check your email and confirm”

Like always, I checked into my account to bring up information about the audition, time, place, wardrobe, etc. 10am okay, Santa Monica…. all good, Bathing Suit…..did I read that right….wardrobe: Bathing Suit. My heart started pounding as I searched for the character description. “Brunette. All American looking. Attractive and fit. Must look good in a bathing suit, but not too skinny or too muscular.”

“Oh no!” my mind races, “My agent thinks I look good in a bathing suit. My agent has never seen me in a bathing suit” thinking, “No, my agent has never seen me in a bathing suit.  Oh crap.”  I run to the mirror to lift my shirt and look at my stomach. “Okay.  Okay.  It’s not that bad.”  I take off my cloths and lean naked frantically rummaging through my drawers for every bathing suit I own. I try them on one after the other. “No…no…no….no, no, NO!” I have to choose. I turn to the mirror. “Okay.  I’m okay.  It said not too skinny so I know I have that part down.  Not too fit is what it said.” I stare at the distorted image standing in front of me. Based on my perception I decide that I fit into the not too fit category. “Why am I freaking out? OH my God I’m freaking out. Put me in a bin of spiders. Burry me alive with rabid snakes covered in grape jelly. Make me tap dance in a lobster suit. Calm down.”

“Cake,” I remember, “There’s red velvet cake in the fridge.” I run immediately to the fridge and begin to eat the red velvet cake with my fingers chasing it with milk from the carton. “Oh my gosh, I just saw this on Oprah today! Emotional eating. I am emotionally eating cake in a bikini in my kitchen” My cats sit staring at me. I put down the cake and decide to take action. I do 35 pushups, 100 sit-ups, and decide not to eat for the rest of the day. “I always wake up feeling thinner” I reflect, “when I don’t eat at night.”

I begin my nightly routine of washing my face, exfoliating, moisturizing, more pushups. I brush my teeth, take vitamins, and finally, go to fill a water bottle to put next to the bed. “Crap, I’m in the kitchen again. Fill the water. Just fill the water. You’re almost there, focus, FOCUS!” I peak in the drawer next to the fridge as I fill the water, you know, just to see what’s in there.

My eye catches an enticing box of….. “DOTS!” I contemplate, “I can eat some Dots. They’re fat free!” I begin to chew Dots in light of my open refrigerator. Dot after Dot I chew and chew. “I’m not going to loose weight in 8 hours. I’m fine” I tell myself. Many moments later, digging colorful bits out of my teeth I catch my reflection in the mirror on the opposite wall. The box of Dots is empty.

I’ve auditioned in fitness cloths a bunch of times, fine. I’m a runner. I work out. Fitness cloths, no problem. I have never, however, been required to awkwardly strip down quickly and unbalanced to a bikini in front of a camera man in a cold florescent casting room with an actor playing my husband uncomfortably watching (while pretending to look away) in his board shorts and t-shirt while the client observes anonymously behind a double sided mirror. Today, that is just what I did.

You know what? It was great! I felt great. Once I got through the strange process of taking off my cloths, I actually felt really good. The camera man had a big warm smile on his face, and the actor playing my husband willingly held my hand as we pretended to “walk along the beach” (basically we strolled slowly across the room and smiled at each other lovingly) Even when I had to do the dreaded 360 turn in my bikini I felt good. I was FREE! My mind had made a monster out of a kitten.

The mind is a cunning saboteur. When I was in college I will never forget the time a random girl I barely knew said to me, “I think you are so pretty” “Thanks” I replied. Then she followed it with, “I told my friend how pretty I thought you were and she said she thought your body was weird but I said I thought you looked like a model” My stomach sunk. Between all the compliments that random girl gave me that day, all I heard was “your body was weird.” I agreed with her friend. My body IS weird. My neck is too long, my hips too wide, my boobs too low, my ankles too skinny. My body is weird. I spent years breaking that agreement and creating a new one. I spent years overcoming the distorted image I created of myself and coming to a new understanding.

My body is awesome. Not because I’m skinny or fit, but because I can walk and run and play! My body is capable of standing for hours on end and walking long distances. My body can play instruments, and reach things in tall cabinets in my kitchen. My body is the vehicle through which I perform all of my daily functions. I am so blessed to have a healthy, functioning body!

But the mind is a cunning, cunning trickster. It didn’t take much to send me into a crazy downward spiral backward into the past. I recovered from this experience and have taken so much from it. Celebrate your body! It is the only one you have. Cherish your body! Cherish YOU! You’re the only one in the world and yours is the only body like it. You are an original model. We all are 🙂

Be Silly. Have Fun.

Love and Light,

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