She says her youngest son "will never know what it's like to have a mom who doesn't love her body."

By Faith Brar
July 24, 2019
Noam Galai/Contributor/Getty Images

Tess Holliday has a zero-tolerance policy for unrealistic beauty standards. The mom of two, who recently came out as pansexual, won't mince words about it, either. Case in point: that time she called out the hotel industry for catering to smaller guests, or when she publicly boycotted Uber after a driver body-shamed her.

But even though she's a force of body positivity today, there was a time when Holliday felt uncomfortable in her skin. In a recent Instagram post, she said she used to feel "too afraid" to wear a swimsuit in the summer.

"Being seen in public somewhere that I couldn't hide my fat body in a cardigan was my worst nightmare," she wrote alongside a photo and video of her soaking up the sun with Bowie, her 3-year-old son.

Holliday admitted that her fear of wearing a swimsuit made her miss out on "countless moments" with her oldest son, 13-year-old Rylee. "I don't have any photos of me and Rylee at the beach or playing in the pool because I didn't own a bathing suit from the ages of 13-24," she shared. (Related: Why This Woman "Forgot Her Bikini" On a Date to the Beach)

But Holliday has turned things around for her relationship with her younger son, Bowie. She vowed that he "will never know what it's like to have a mom who doesn't love her body," she wrote. "I've been thinking about this because it's summer and literally every activity is outside/in the heat, and we have the added pressure of people using toxic diet culture language like 'beach bodies'. Even though it took me longer than I wished, I have amazing memories like this with Bowie and made up for lost time with my oldest too." (Related: Tess Holliday Revealed Why She Doesn't Share More of Her Fitness Journey On Instagram)

Bathing suit anxiety is real. But Holliday makes an important point about not letting it get in the way of living your best life.

"Don't let fear keep you from enjoying your life," she wrote, concluding her post. "You deserve beautiful experiences, and beautiful photographs to remember them by!"

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