Portrait Session with Marisabelle @roadtobelle

Marisabelle Bonnici had her first professional photo session with us.
I asked that why she decided to have her portraits taken because, she said, “I will be part of a book with 25 inspirational women and needed a portrait for that apart from that I am also working on my own book dealing with binge eating disorder and intuitive eating.”

She shared her photo session experience, “I love taking photos myself – although my favourite subject is nature. I always felt comfortable behind the camera but not in front of it. So I was really worried when I needed to provide a professional photo as I was convinced I would not be able to give a natural photo as I tense up when photographed. Amanda made me feel comfortable and attractive and I absolutely loved the experience. It was a game changer for me as now I know how to pose better and feel that I would love to have more pictures taken as it felt amazing.”

I am so so so moved and happy when I read Marisabelle wrote: “I am much more confident now and wont be shying away or hiding in the background when photos are taken anymore. Thank you Amanda for this.” This is want I want for every women I photograph, it means a lot to me. Thank you Belle for such lovely review!!

Below is her story and journey that I would like to share with you:

If you grew up anything like me you grew up hearing the phrases “Finish your meal!” Or “Clean your plate!” My parents and grandparents would often make me feel guilty for not eating a whole plate and I grew up thinking you always had to finish your entire plate, even when you were full. I eventually ended up turning to food as a way of comfort in times of stress and anxiety and loneliness.

A few years ago I realised I was suffering from an eating disorder. Recovering from an eating disorder includes not only getting better, but achieving a full and satisfying life. My journey to recovery has not been a straight, steady road. Rather there were ups and downs, new discoveries and setbacks. Over time, it is possible to look back and see, despite the halting progress and discouragements, how far I have really come.

Each time I reach a milestone, I see that I have recovered a piece of my life and I draw new strength from it. I once read “Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose joy and keep choosing it every day.”

I find choosing joy and trying to experience joy to be among the most difficult tasks when you are battling an eating disorder.

And yet it is critical to try to reconnect with those persons, places, and things that were once able to give us enjoyment. You have to learn to fight and always look to the good in your life. One thing that I needed to hear was: you are not weak. I am nowhere close to the end of my journey, because finding happiness doesn’t end when you get it—it’s a lifelong path of finding what you enjoy to become who you want to be.

I have beautiful days and I have dark days. It is those dark days, however, that I grasp onto, and that I use to propel me onward through whatever emotions I am feeling. I embrace the night, because without it, morning would never rise. Not every day is filled with complete happiness, but every day is filled with moments of hope, love and possibilities. Every day is filled with resiliency and strength—and that, is my happiness.

Her interview story on Pink magazine and the Times of Malta:https://timesofmalta.com/articles/view/whats-it-really-like-to-live-with-binge-eating.739699