As a child, I was in an accident that resulted in a broken femur. Two surgeries later, my leg was left scarred. Throughout my childhood, I was body-shamed and told that I needed to cover up my “gross” scars. This, along with advertisements portraying girls with perfect, airbrushed skin, made me feel as though I was disfigured, amplifying my insecurities. In addition, people told me I would never be able to run, walk, or dance again. That I would never make it as a model because models are “perfect”, rather than people of substance. For this reason I want to be a model; I want to normalize imperfection in the industry and inspire others to overcome their obstacles.
As a model, I hope that I can inspire others to embrace their unique features and love themselves unconditionally. I hope that my presence in the modeling industry can empower others and inspire them to defy their odds. My parents have always taught me to “leave things better than they were before,” picking up waste that littered the beautiful, sweeping sand dunes and beaches of my childhood. Through my family’s green practices, I have gained a profound respect for the environment that I was raised in.
This respect has carried into my interest in sustainable fashion, a movement that is fostering ecological change in the fashion and garment industries. In today’s world, fashion is as much an art is it is a defining characteristic of who we are. In the future, I hope that I can influence others to make ethical choices in regards to clothing and cosmetics, in addition to advocate for better environmental practices worldwide. We only have one Earth; we as ethical consumers and members of the industry must work to fight against climate change by any means possible. Big change starts with the small choices that we make every day.