I’m Telling The Truth

September 1, 2015

I am a liability, or a tremendous value add; of which I know the latter to be true. The service of honesty breaks the scale when measured against the disinterest of brands and individuals that cower in fear at the idea of transparency. This sounds sharp from my tongue; however, I have survived in the shadows of this fear for most of my young adult and adult life. It’s all most of us will ever know, operating out of scarcity, in fear that what we are is too big, too great, to fit into a conforming, socially acceptable idea of what we should be. What I learned a couple years ago as I repelled my way into the deepest well of self-doubt, is that living with radical honesty has forever changed me. But sometimes you have to drink the muck at the bottom of the well, just to know how divine the first sip at the top is.

I want the truth, crave it. I grew up singing childhood jingles and reading books about being rewarded for honesty and truthfulness, yet from the youngest age, I also learned that there are things I should never talk about. For me, it was my body. I never felt comfortable discussing the topic. I was bigger than all of my friends. Second tallest in the class. Looking back, I never felt worthy when I transitioned from girl to woman. I was a competitive athlete from a young age. My catcher’s thighs doubled any of my guy friend’s; a far cry from the musculature length of Joseph Pilates or the popular transparent thinness of Kate Moss. Seeing crop tops on my friends made me sweat from anxiety. I’d never be able to wear one, still to this day it paralyzes me when I think about wearing them. I’d never be Cluelessly female. At best, I’d always border tomboy.

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I Am The Big Girl

July 7, 2015

I am the big girl, for years, plays over like a broken record. And one day, this big girl will write to save her life.
But not today. Today’s the day that will change my life, even though I don’t know it yet.
Fidgeting in the waiting room sofa chair, alone, I anxiously click at the top of a pen I’ve borrowed from the front desk; inscribed on it, “Mercy Hospital.” Air escapes my nose with a heavy weight from within my gut that wants to escape with it; to myself, a quiet, conclusive, worried laugh. This pen is not going to be a memento I bring home. A terrible conversation starter, lingering around in my pen jar, floating around the bottom of my purse next to a loose stick of gum, waiting for someone to borrow it.
“Oh, Mercy Hospital, what were you doing there?” Tense shoulders rise uncomfortably around my ears. I picture the doozy of a conversation ender, but the truth, nonetheless. My blue eyes wince with bottled-up shame and give shape to young crow’s feet. “Plastic surgery?”
I’d rather listen to silverware in a garbage disposal than have that conversation.
A part of me wants to keep this awful pen, too. Mostly as a token of surviving the trauma I’m about to endure. Something meaningful to hold onto. This ridiculous pen, a witness to the moment my heart, my life, shatters into a million little pieces like a glass vial dropped onto hard tile floor.
I want to hide my body; I want it to cave inward, my belly button becoming a black hole, drawing my body into its unknown abyss, disappearing depths, ensuing a rare, unexplainable phenomenon: The departed woman. If only. Instead, my belly is soft and visible; no magic black hole offering up a disappearing act from my woes. No haven I can escape to when the pressure of pretty makes me launch into borderline suicidal tears. No dark corner I can disappear into that accepts all of me, without rejecting flabby thighs, a doughy stomach.

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Topless ™ by Emily
Reviews and Giveaways

Reviews + Giveaways

Praise For Emily

“Emily is an absolute joy to collaborate with. She brings the real conversation to the forefront about body image in such an authentic way. Our community left her Topless event feeling empowered & full of possibility!”

- Alison Utne, lululemon athletica

“Working with Emily is always so much fun (so much so that we’ve done it twice!). We love how she connects with her audience and exhibits true love for the companies she showcases, offering her own in-depth and authentic thoughts.”

- Madeline Alcott, Petit Vour

“Working with Emily is a no-brainer. Her writing is brave but vulnerable, sassy but self-aware, and kind but tough. It’s a joy to share her pieces with our community because so many readers tell us that they feel inspired and empowered by her choices.”

- Mind Body Green

“Emily provided great insights and tips as she reflected on the value of seizing the moment in a wide variety of her experiences. In short, she “rocked!”

- Stephen C. Harper, Ph.D.

“Emily was a pleasure to work with on our Rescue Chocolate giveaway. She has built up an active community in a short period. I would do a giveaway or any project with her again in a heartbeat.“

- Sarah Gross, rescue chocolate

“Emily is as sweet as she is smart. She is a true beauty with a body that is powerful, loved, and strong. Doing a giveaway on My Kind of Life was so much fun, her community is filled with wonderful women just like her!”

- Leanne Maily Hilgart, Vaute Couture

“Topless provides not only an opportunity but a call to action for each of us in service of radical honesty and acceptance of ourselves exactly as we are, to show up authentically not just for each other but for ourselves and THAT is magic.”

- Claire Santos, E-RYT

“In a way like very few can, Emily teaches us the importance of embracing our vulnerabilities in order to maximize our full potential. Topless Yoga is not your ordinary yoga class, but rather a movement and a state of mind!”

Tina Pate, KIND Snacks

“Each person involved brought their full heart into the event, creating a space of love, compassion, and clarity like I hadn’t experienced before. If you are so blessed to have Emily and her team visit your city, drop everything and go experience the magic for yourself.”  

- Nikki Novo, Author

Emily Nolan, you just stole my heart. Thank you for this.

- Elena Brower,
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this kinda rocks!
oh darling, indulge a little
this kinda rocks!
oh darling, indulge a little