Discovering Self-Love Through the Lens: A Journey of Self-Acceptance by Zoe Waechter

Sep 19, 2023
Written by
Marie Gomez
Photographed by
Zoe Waechter

eet Zoe Waechter, a 23-year-old French woman born in Bastia, Corsica, with a rich heritage encompassing Kabyle and German descent. Today, we delve into Zoe's story of how photography became a powerful tool in helping her appreciate and love her body.

Zoe's Journey of Self-Discovery Through Photography

Zoe's relationship with her body has been far from simple. Like many, she faced the pressure of conforming to society's beauty standards, leading her down a perilous path. At the tender age of 17, Zoe found herself caught in the grips of anorexia. It was a dark period in her life where her body and mind waged a relentless battle.

The society Zoe grew up in often glorified a particular body type, one that she struggled to fit into. She felt perpetually inadequate, and to meet these unrealistic standards, she subjected her body to traumatic experiences. It was an uphill battle to achieve an elusive 'ideal.' But then, something remarkable happened—Zoe discovered photography.

Through the lens, Zoe saw herself in a different light. She experienced the unique perspective that photographers provided, exploring various styles and angles. This newfound outlook helped her break free from the negative self-perception that had haunted her for so long.

Finding Zoe's Place: A Turning Point

Yet, the most significant turning point in Zoe's journey toward self-acceptance was when she found her true place in this world—Greece. She'll be moving there in October. In Greece, Zoe discovered a part of herself that felt truly fulfilled. It was a place where she finally felt at peace with her body and her image. It might seem trivial from the outside, but when she found where she truly belonged, everything fell into place. Greece became Zoe's sanctuary, her refuge from self-doubt.

Embracing Zoe's Favorite Feature: The Eyes

When asked what she loves most about her body now, Zoe would say it's her eyes. They are the windows to her identity, mood, and emotions. Unlike her ongoing struggles with areas like her thighs or stomach, Zoe's eyes have always been a source of self-love. They reveal the real Zoe, and she's never been at war with them.

A Message of Hope

To those women who, like Zoe, have struggled to appreciate and love their bodies, she conveys a message of hope. Even in the darkest moments, remember that your relationship with your body can evolve. Life is full of ups and downs, but this journey is necessary for personal growth. Reconnect with yourself, do things that bring you joy, and accept that the road to self-love is a continuous one.

Three Tips for Confidence
  • Recognize Your Worth: Stop underestimating yourself. Even in the smallest daily achievements, acknowledge your value.
  • Social Media Awareness: Distance yourself from social networks. Understand that what you see online is often staged and retouched, particularly in the world of photography. Real beauty is not airbrushed perfection.
  • Self-Reliance: Realize your ability to take care of yourself without relying on others. Solo travel, for example, can be a powerful tool for personal growth.

Zoe's journey to self-love has been filled with challenges, but photography and finding her true place in Greece have been guiding lights. She encourages all women to embark on their own journeys of self-discovery, for it is through these paths that they can truly learn to appreciate and love themselves. Remember, even in the darkest moments, there is always a light. Life is a journey, and every step forward is a step toward self-acceptance and a more fulfilling future.

To see more of Zoe follow her on Instagram @zoewaectr

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