Posting pictures with Stevie the Stoma on social media is so easy, and I really don’t worry all that much, however, that first moment in a new place surrounded by people I don’t know, wow that’s tough. Who would have thought that undressing on a beach could be so difficult for someone who posts pictures on social media without a problem ey, but if you could have been me, felt how I felt before I got undressed for the first time on the beach of Maiori the other week then I think you would be able to understand easier. I don’t even know how to explain the feelings I have before undressing in a new place every time. My stomach is a mass of nervous storm, my heart starts to race and I feel my heart in my throat, I get a bit weak in my legs, and so self conscious. I stand there with all of this and more going on, while I try to take deep breaths to calm myself. I put my sunglasses on and they become my safe place, if no one can see my eyes then they can’t see me either. After a while of standing like this I eventually take the big step of lifting my top off (of course I have my bikini on), still nervous I lay down on my towel and just keep breathing deep calming breaths, still with my sun glasses on I feel the warm sand through the towel against my back and pretend that no one can see me and I am hidden in the sand. Once slightly calmer again it’s time to get up again and of course all the feelings storm up over me as it’s time to walk across the beach, through all the people and get in the sea, with my head held high, and eyes focused on the sea, straight out ignoring the people around me and concentrating on getting out to that beautiful blue water. My sunglasses are my saviour, with them on its only me in the world and I can make it. It’s not until after I’ve done the walk to and from the sea a couple of times that I can finally relax, breath out and not have to wear my sunglasses each time. Now I’m walking around on the beach without a care in the world and those horrible first time feelings are gone…for this time. Next time, a new beach or new surrounding, new people, and it will be a repeat again, but for now I am just fine with me.

So a good little bit of advice to anyone who struggles with the thought of showing themselves at the beach, remember those deep calming breaths, and then put on your sunglasses and no one can see you 😎🌞

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