beauty

This woman needs an army of followers.

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You just had your third baby and you hate your body. I know, you think. I’ll have surgery. I’ll get that flappy bit on my stomach chopped off so I don’t have to tuck it into my jeans. I’ll get my boobs lifted so they look less like socks with golfballs in them. Can I get my nipples made smaller? That would be great.

And then you go see a doctor and he says, sure. I can do all those things for you. It will cost around $30K and there are risks associated with surgery but you’ll probably be fine. And you think, yeah great. I’m going to do this. I deserve to have a body I don’t feel ashamed of.

Your youngest child is a girl and when you look at her one day, shortly after making the decision to have the surgery, you think about what you’ll tell her. What message are you sending to her by cutting and reshaping your own body? And then you realise you can’t possibly have the surgery so you join a gym and work out like a maniac. You starve yourself and obsess over everything you can and can’t eat, until you’re as toned and skinny as the women you’ve always thought had the ‘perfect’ body.

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And you're pretty miserable which surprises you because you thought looking as close as genetically possible to a Victoria's Secret model would make you so happy. So happy and so sexy. But your husband keeps urging you to eat something and your kids complain that all you do is go to the gym.

Taryn talks to Mia about having 'the perfect body':

So you stop. You gain weight. You lose your hard body and replace your six pack with some soft, gentle rolls and because you're a photographer and a revolution is taking place in your head about your body - about all women's bodies - you decide to document the body you have now.

Taryn's before and after shot. Image via Body Image Movement Facebook.

And that's the moment everything changes, not in your head - that lightning bolt has already struck twice, once when you decided not to have surgery and again when you decided to give up your pursuit of the perfect body by starving yourself and exercising incessantly.

This time, the change happens in your life.

Taryn Brumfit is an extraordinary woman. A warrior for other women. I've known her since just before she took that photo and before her life changed and I've seen her move through the world with purpose and grace and fiesty passion. She's kicking arse and speaking truth and you need to know about the brilliant thing she's done. So I invited her back to Mamamia to interview her for my podcast, No Filter:

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