Monday, 8 July 2013

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

"Honest Lies" film project- Please support!

Gabriella Apicella runs a fortnightly creative writing group for women exiting prostitution. Struck by the poignancy of a story written by one of the group members, (who I am currently attending an enterprise course with) she has adapted it for the screen, and is filming it on 28th July.

Please support the film project, and women exiting the sex industry by pledging £1 or more towards the project.

Click below to see the pledge and find out more! 

Saturday, 29 June 2013

I dont believe in fate, But...

(8.30am 28th June.)
There are big fat snotty tears in my ears, on my face and probably in my ears. I'm curled up in a ball and I CANT stop crying that nothing goes right. And I can't do anything right...
And generally the world is not fucking right!

Its like watching a teenage snot goblin have a breakdown.
Except i'm not 14 anymore. And I cant curl up with my teddies and give up on being an adult.
No matter how appealing that sounds...

(8.30pm 29th June)
Nearly 2 weeks ago I quit the sex industry for good. I shared a little about my story, and added a full stop. A full stop signifies the end of something, and the beginning of something new...

The last few days have not let me down; they have seen the start of a new chapter. A bright, free chapter in my story's future...

Why then, the tears? 
This week I've been on a roller coaster ride. Life.
I've met with the chairman an amazing charity, been featured in one of my favourite on line papers, promised a meeting to the head of a christian missionary project in Thailand, and most importantly, offered a place on a life changing course. Which I nearly had to turn down. 


Money is short.

The reality of leaving the sex industry is that women get used to a pretty high hourly rate, and leaving the industry means cutting off your income altogether. 

I don't believe in fate, but I felt I was being forced to close the door, and I wasn't (and am still not) sure if choosing to close the door breaks the "another one opens" rule. (Not that I believe in that either, erm...*cough*) 

So, on came the tears. I'll admit, I threw myself a big pity party that day, then made a happy collage, then cried some more! 

Then, something AMAZING happened. And the universe, in all her glory, handed me a chance; One by one, each obstacle was overcome. Nowhere to stay? The course leaders found me a hostel. And paid for it.
No money for food? Free breakfast with your bed, and lunch on the course.
No way to get here? Oh, we'll cover your travel too! 

And suddenly... I find myself with no obstacle left, but fear...
And I took a deep breath and said, "Fuck it, I'm In!" 
(For once my impulsive nature comes in handy, thank you, Mrs Therapist!)

And here I am, Saturday night, telling myself to pack (and still not doing it), with a ticket to London for tomorrow night! For the next 2 weeks Ill be studying alongside some amazing women from all different backgrounds, at The Imperial College Of London. 
(That's bold, because it deserves to be, Fuck Yeah!)

No doubt, there's still fear, but I'm letting the impulsive side of me override it, and take me on another roller coaster, starting today. 

In quick, unfashionable conclusion, I'd like to remind myself that whether an opportunity comes in the shape of a door, window, or a goddamn trampoline, I don't believe in fate. 
Life is what you make it. 
I'm making it great. 

Dont forget to like me on facebook, tweet me @MichelleM_Art, and check out my Tumblr and Pinterest 

Saturday, 22 June 2013

Beach Bodies; The 5 new rules.

At this time of year, the media regales us with images of the perfect beach body, and endless articles on how to fit back into last year's bikini. This is an absurd seasonal tradition of telling people how to look, that leaves women worldwide reeling at preparation that lies ahead...

No More!

Here are my "Rules" for a summer of sexiness, self love and sass!

1- If you dont fit into last year's bikini, buy another oneBuy one that looks great for your size, now! No need to change anything, doll, you're still beautiful!

2- Wear what you like. 
If you want to wear a hot pink bikini, a vintage swim suit or nothing at all; Its OK.
Remember the sexiest thing you can wear, is confidence.

3- Stop comparing yourself! 
That girl has great legs, yes. But you have great boobs/eyes/mind...
You are unique, enjoy it! 

4- Be a supermodel! 
Posing for and taking photos gets you used to your own image. Youll soon realise "bad"/"good" shots are about angles, not about you!

5- In the words of Baz Luhrmann: Dont forget the sunscreen.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Self love, worthiness, and why I decided to date myself.

I don't love myself. 
I have yet to figure out whether this fact is a product of my own doing, my up-bringing or a mental condition. But its a fact, all the same. 

If you read Mandy Hale's quote above and thought "Hi 5 Sister!" or "Amen!", then of course, I'm with you too, Grrlfriend! 

We all know the importance of self worth, esteem and respectBut when did we forget about self love? 

Self love is vital to a healthy functioning community... Why?

How can you respect something you don't at least like?
How can you value something as worthy if you don't love and take care of it?
How can I respect myself,and grow high self esteem without taking care of me?

Heres another fact. I cant. And nor can you.

Now, Society tells us that money equates worth. If you want something,you pay for it, the more you want it, the more you pay. Simple.
Society tells women that sex equates worth. The sexier and more attractive the woman, the more attention she gets, the more she is wanted. Right? WRONG!

Hundreds of girls, including myself, at some point believe this warped sense of worth. 
Baited by attention, laughter and smiles; but what awaits those caught up? Abusive relationships, meaningless one night stands and sex work. Once trapped, these lifestyles become practically inescapable; Using drugs, drink and incessant spending to fill the "chasm" only heightens reliance on partners, one night stands and prostitution. 

Its a big, bad, vicious circle. 

But, Instead of falling pray to what "society" tells you, you can choose instead to rate your own worthiness. And this is where self love comes back in. 

By engaging with yourself, pampering yourself, investing in your personal development and growth, and generally treating you like the super-hot-incredible person you are...

Your self esteem begins to grow...
   and as this begins to flourish... 
      so does your self respect... 
          and your awareness of you're own worth! 

We're all pretty priceless, you know, you just have to realise it!

Writing as someone, who openly doesnt do these things, you may shout 
               "How can you tell me to love myself?, F-Off!" 

Because im also writing as someone undertaking that same journey. And Its fucking hard! 
I know the struggle, to value yourself, when nobody else does...
I know whats its like to be worth £250 to one man, and not £40 to the next...
I know what its like to have to stay strong, and stay out of that big bad vicious circle, when all you want is some affection,and someone to love you. Even for an hour. 

This is why I am taken the self love thaaang one step further
I have decided to date myself. Oh, Yes. 
I'm going to take myself on romantic walks, engage in hobbies with myself, cook gorgeous candlelit dinners for myself, take myself to new found places, buy myself presents and focus on the things that me, myself and I love! I also don't have to consider others plans, feelings, ideas, doubts or opinions, but I also have the option of 'cheating' on myself, and showing affection to friends and suitors alike...
We have an open relationship; me, myself and I. But just because I choose to love someone else, I wont choose to love me any less. 

As someone who fell, hard, into the sex/money/worth trap, the hardest time for me, is when I'm alone. And upset. 
The easy thing to do, of course, is to fall back into that big bad vicious circle, find a man, find some money and find some intoxicated state of bliss. Yum... 

It has been said though, that nothing easy is worth having. And instead, when i'm alone and upset, I'm going to look in the mirror and say:
"Right- you little lump of awesome- I'm taking you out!"
and i'll hold my hand while I walk with my toes in the sand, knowing that if I ever need someone to tell me they love me,  I don't have to venture too far, anymore...
If you liked this post and want more inspiration from me, visit my Facebook page.

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Time to get naked; I used to be a sex worker.

"What would happen if one woman told the truth about her life? The world would split open.”- Muriel Rukeyser

I'm surrounded by two dozen notebooks, half finished plans, crumpled pieces of crap and paper. 
There's a half smoked packet of cigarettes on the desk calling to me to re-acquaint myself and the smell of patchouli wafting from an incense burner, in an attempt to calm my nerves at posting this blog... 

What's so scary? I hear you ask...

Well, Its time to get naked. 

My Name is Michelle. 
I'm a Libran. I make pretty things laced with magick. I love to dance. I don't like Tea. Or coffee. Or cats. I have a rather large addiction to buying stationary, and eating pasta. I suffer from mental health problems. I walk with my feet on the bare earth and my head in the clouds. 

But, you all knew that, right!?

What you may not know, is that for the last 3 years I have been an active sex worker. 
I have been in pornography, posed nude for glamour shots, and worked as a high class and alternative "Escort"... 

Since I was 17, I have lived a double life; using sex work to support my passions as an artist and eco warrior. 
Struggling to define one world from another, unable to speak or share my day with friends; I yearn to speak out and let my true voice sing again. 
No more holding back, no more censorship. 

I am afraid.

I know the taboo around sex work still holds prevalence in the 21st century; I have experienced first hand the abuse surrounding sex work. I have been called dirt,  segregated and made an example of by people who I believed to be my friends. I have been hurt and used by people who once loved me, but turned abuser once they believed it acceptable. I have taken kicks, slaps, fists, insults, and hastily hurled words...

I spent a year out of the industry while with my Ex-fiancee, but he never wanted me to share, so I stayed quiet. Then, sadly, the relationship came to an end, and, drawn by my need for affection, attention and an ingrained belief that male attention achieves these things; I fell back in...

But Today, I Quit. 

Please don't get me wrong; I don't believe that engaging in prostitution reduces women's worth. I know, that on a personal level, selling sex for money did not make me less of a person. At times, I felt empowered to be utilising my sexuality in such a way... 

But sex work is demanding on the worker, both Physically, Emotionally and Spiritually. 
Travel takes time, hours are irregular, disrespect is common, and an already unhealthy view of male attention and self worth can only be further warped by this industry.

Sex work is a vicious circle I have escaped once. 
Today I decided not to let the circle consume me anymore.

The fear of pressing publish to this post is obvious; My hands are still shaking. 
Why post it then? You may ask... 

I want to speak out...

In the hope that I can inspire women trapped in the circle to escape.
In the hope I can break some of the stigma and taboo surrounding sex workers.
In the hope I can encourage a big dose of self love and respect for woman kind.

In the hope that I can finally be honest with myself again, and stand, naked in-front of the mirror, let the covers fall away, and let my true song sing out once more. 


If you would like read more of me and stay in contact please visit my Facebook page.

Monday, 10 June 2013

Definitions and saying F*CK YOU to Censorship!

Ive tried for many years to define myself, find the true self, and generally box myself in for as long as I remember...
Am I the free spirited hippy?
Or the headstrong rock chick?
Am I the eccentric eco warrior?
Or the suave and classy fifties fox?
The confident business woman or The promiscuous party girl?
The vulnerable victim or the untouchable optimist?

Deciding on this 'definitive' character for myself, or place in this world is impossible.
I must come to accept I am ALL of those things, and more.

I spoke briefly with Lisa from sassyology, after following her blogs on Heart Riffing.

Coming from a place where I was trying to force a box around my personality, her wild words about speaking truth contained a dangerous attraction- can I really just speak my truth? Without censorship or fear?
I still dont know the answer to that one, I DO know that some of my truths are taboo in nature and I am not ready to face the backlash of sharing.
But one day... I also know that until that day- I do not have to be any less me.

I am no longer going to censor my online presence for fear,
I am no longer going to force my personality in a box it doesnt fit into... I want to let that true voice sing like a bird and scream profanities again! (trust me, It will do both!)
So, beginning today, I am me.
I am whole.
Uncensored, Naked and Singing.