Appreciate a Functioning Body with @Leeciemunster

Good evening everyone, today LECHERY presents to you a super impressive woman. This is Leecie. She is another perfect example of a warrior, a Jill of all Trades, and an inspiration to all. She currently works in pharmaceutical production, she is also a part time model, runs two groups on Facebook called Body Positive Warriors and Witchy Women. On top of that, Leecie runs her own candle company called Cauldron and Co. In this interview, we talk about her journey with stretch marks, how she got it, the battle she faced with it, and body positivity. To learn more about this impressive woman who is killing it in everything thing she does, continue on reading! We have a lot to learn from her! Like always, show love and support! 

Interview with the gorgeous and inspirational woman @Leeciemunster

LECHERY: First of all, thank you so much for giving us the opportunity to interview you! It is our pleasure to have you here with us (virtually) of course haha!. Let’s first start off by you telling us a little bit more about yourself. What do you do and where do you come from?

LEECIE: Thank you for asking me to be a part of something so wonderful and also thank you for doing such a wonderful thing for the community. I hail from Sydney Australia; my background is Greek which most people don’t know! My working background is in Pharmaceutical production specialising in chemotherapy, but I have recently completed studies in surgical instrument sterilisation while I was off work. I also professionally model part time and I am signed to an agency that represents curve models as well as run my own artisan candle company Cauldron and Co. Lastly, I run two women’s groups on Facebook one which focuses on body positivity called Body Positive Warriors and another which focuses on new age spirituality called Witchy Women. It’s safe to say I am one busy woman.

LECHERY: We love your Instagram platform! You're such an amazing model! When did you first start getting into modelling?

LEECIE: I first got into modelling probably 5 or so years ago, I couldn’t relate to anyone online in terms of body shapes so I made a space for myself, I was around pre-body positivity movement so it was a strange time for us plus sized babes but I was eventually scouted by a lingerie brand and given my first big break. I’ve worked with countless photographers since and it's something I really enjoy and seem to get a lot of great feedback from.

LECHERY:  We came across your page as we saw your post with regards to your stretch marks. Tell us more about it and how you got it. 

LEECIE: To cut a very long story short I had a significant workplace spinal injury in 2016, by the end of 2017 I was pretty much bed ridden and had to leave my job. So, immobility combined with a lot of strong medications resulted in me putting on about 25kgs in a period of just over a year. My skin didn’t handle this well and the result was quite severe stretch marks mainly concentrated on my stomach.

LECHERY: How did you feel when you first got stretch marks?

LEECIE: I will be honest when they first started coming up I was devastated, within a very short period of time, maybe 6 months I went from none at all to having my stomach destroyed by them or so I thought at the time. It was a very hard thing to go through even as a body positive advocate I was shaken. All my years talking about self-acceptance, I was now confronted with something that was not only quite shocking but something that made my injury visible. It was no longer an internal struggle; the pain was marked on my body forever.

The hardest part of it I think was how my following reacted, being in the public eye unfortunately means you can’t deal with these things privately. Now there was an overwhelming amount of support from my amazing followers during this time but there was also a darker side to it. I was asked a lot what did I do to myself? Was I pregnant? Why did I let myself go? I was told I was disgusting frequently and lost a lot of followers (good riddance).

LECHERY: Did this ever change the way you see your own body now?

LEECIE: Absolutely, between the internal injury and external changes to my body it was a long and hard transition mentally, one which I still work on every day. Do I wish they weren’t there? Sure! Some days! I won’t lie to you! But, at the same time they are here and they are a part of me now and forever, I definitely feel different about how my body looks but not in a bad way, I guess it's similar to aging. You can't expect to look one way forever or honey you are going to be very disappointed. Embrace the changes and appreciate that you have a chance at life and a functioning body to tackle it with. 

LECHERY:  What is your advice on women and men who are currently dealing with stretch marks and are insecure about it?

LEECIE: Honestly, it's ok to hate them or feel uncomfortable at first, BUT there comes a time where you need to let go and realise they aren’t important. No one is going to remember your stretch marks when you are dead and gone, they will remember your shine though.

Get them out into the sun, wear that cute crop top, let the world know you aren’t here to be hidden away but you’re just out here living your best life.

LECHERY: Would you ever consider going for some sort of cosmetic procedure to remove it?

LEECIE: No, they are a part of my story now and the amount of thank you messages and comments from men and women around the world thanking me for making them feel normal makes the struggle worth every second. These scars have brought me closer to people I didn’t know were out there struggling and has enabled me to be a voice for them and show them that stretch marks don’t mean that you have to hide away.

LECHERY: What do you hope people to understand with regards to those who have stretch marks?

LEECIE: That there are a multitude of ways people get stretch marks. Growth spurts during puberty, illness, weight or muscle gain, weight loss, pregnancy, injury the list goes on. They shouldn’t be seen with a negative connotation; they are no different to the freckles on your face or the greys in your hair. They are as much a part of being a NORMAL human as anything else.

LECHERY: Since you are in the modelling industry, what do you hope to find in the modelling industry in the near future? 

LEECIE: More representation of stretch marks and normal bodies, and not just on socially acceptable sizes. Brands are trying to be inclusive with size 14s with white skin, no tattoos, and no imperfections. While I appreciate the effort, it's time now to try a little harder and actually put their money where their mouth is and be inclusive in all its aspects. Trust me, the community will cheer on any brand who actually does the right! 

LECHERY: Describe self-care to you in three words:

LEECIE: Motivated, Confident and kind-hearted.

Follow our LECHERY Lady on Instagram: @Leeciemunster


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