Midlife. It's a time of great transformation. A time when we are able to create space and make time for ourselves, as we shed previous roles and responsibilities. But it's also a time that can be overwhelming as we chart a new course.
After serving 1000's of women in midlife over the past 12 years, I've come to learn that how we feel about our bodies can be a significant block to living a future life to the full.
And getting into a swimsuit is a real test of that.
Maz had 'tried it all' to change her body, her size. Nothing seemed to work, or if it did, it was short-lived. It was about being a certain weight, a smaller size that did matter at first. Then over time, it became more about not being able to do the things she wanted to do.
Over the years she'd been on a buffet of different diets and exercises. When she was younger, she was bulimic for a short while too all in the name of losing weight. It was a journey of ups and downs and it was exhausting.
A Mum to 4 (now adult) kids, wife to a farmer (on properties as far as the eye could see), being an active part of outback communities, Maz has always been busy and hard working. Always on the go. But as she got older her body wasn't doing what it used to. Her energy levels depleting. And the added weight just refused to budge.
Her Breaking Point - Her Next Move
It was on a family water skiing day out, something they loved to do together, when the boat couldn't lift her out of the water. She was devastated. Not embarrassed, devastated. That was her breaking point. Something needed to be done to help her 'get her body back' to doing what she loved and all the things she wanted to do.
Maz had gastric band surgery. A decision she didn't take lightly. Something she had been researching for a few years prior. And for her, it's worked.
This surgery was not about changing her body to be a certain size or weight. It was about being able to do the things she wanted to do going forward. Not existing, living. It was from a place of love and care.
Maz's Cossie Confidence Story
How Maz felt about her body was reflected in how she felt in a swimsuit.
When the kids were growing up, she was very self-conscious in swimmers. Wearing a sarong over her bathers, letting it drop right where she was to enter the pool so that when she got out, it was strategically placed for a quick pick up was how she could face being in them, in public. Over time it got easier. By doing more in her togs, bit by bit, it became less daunting.
As she got older, it became less about how she looked in her cossies and more about what being in them enabled her to do. Does that mean she didn't want to look good in her cossie? Heck no. When you look good it certainly does make you feel good, but it's not as important as being held back from doing what you want to do, in your togs included.
A Cossie Confidence Crew Member - becoming an Ambassador.
"I love summer and spending time in the pool with family and friends. I'm a size 16-18 and there is nothing better than feeling confident in swimmers and clothing that flatters your shape. I love your range and would love the opportunity to help people feel cossie confident around the pool on holidays and start to enjoy life."
When Maz threw her hat into the ring to become one of my first ever Cossie Confidence Ambassadors in 2017 it was just before heading off on a precious family holiday to Fiji where she planned on making the most of it. Snorkeling, diving off boats, sipping cocktails poolside and swimming. She knew it would also be a great opportunity to show other women what's possible when you care less about what others think and do more with those you love. And she certainly did.
5 Shoots Later...
Each year we celebrate Cossie Confidence as a Crew, at our Cossie Confidence supported by Sequins and Sand shoot. We gather for what is an incredible day of fun and friendship as we bring the CC message to life in photos and videos.
Maz is as passionate today as she was back in 2017 when she first started putting herself out there to encourage other women to get into a cossie and live their best summer. And planning for the 2022 shoot has already begun. Ballina here we come!
Can you love your body and want to change it?
Absolutely. If it's from a place of caring. To feeling good so that you can do the things you want to do. To live...no holding back. Swimsuits and all.
If you'd like to feel supported in your summer confidence journey, then I invite you to join our community of like-minded women seeking to do the same. We hang out on social media in our private Facebook group Women 40+, Self Love, Body Love, Summer Confidence.
We also have a paid membership community, The Summer Confidence Society where the transformation from unsure to confident in a swimsuit is possible. Covering Mindset, Style and Wellness it is a wonderful place to learn, connect and grow.
Shop for your Swimsuits and Resortwear over on www.SequinsandSand.com.au where you'll find the popular Shape & Size Calculator to get you on your way.
We can't wait to welcome you where ever you'd like to connect.
To your summer confidence.
Founder, Sequins and Sand.