From the moment we are born we are told how beautiful we are even though we resemble a potato with a mouth.
As soon as we make a noise we are told how brilliant and clever we are.
While these comments are said in a loving manner, are they doing more harm than good?
Growing up I was always much taller than the other kids, while strangers would tell me to join basketball teams, my family would tell me to model. They would tell me how beautiful I was, and how lucky I was to have the height of a runway star. My family failed to mention that the similarities between me and a model stopped at height. As a kid I was overweight, while my limbs were long, my tummy was well rounded, my face was so chubby and squishy, unrelated, but my hair also resembled a dirty mullet.
I grew up believing that I was an undiscovered talent, just waiting to be found. Whenever I would leave the house I was sure to wear my best, just in case a model scout happened to walk past. My best being a black mesh top with silver spray paint over it, baggy, low rider, bedazzled jeans with pink trim and a pastel blue lipstick. The pure comic relief I provided the citizens of Christchurch from my outlandish outfits alone should have been enough to secure me a modeling job.
My mum was a hairdresser, and I couldn’t have been more proud of her if I tried. While other peoples parents had boring desk jobs my mum ran funky salons that seemed like the happiest place to work. I’d always told Mum that I was going to be just like her and become a hairdresser. Her response was always the same, that I needed to go to university and become a doctor, dentist or vet. My school report cards were always perfect so this meant I was smart enough to be able to achieve these feats.
It has been relatively hard growing up having to remove the rose tinted glasses and see the world as it is. As an adult I know that my family only told me I could be a model because to them I am beautiful, to them I have always been a princess deserving of riches and fame. They told me to conquer in academics, because they believed I had the brains to succeed. It was just the rest of the world that got to see me and my true colours, mullet and all.
While my being was a blessing to my family, especially my Mum, it turns out that as a person I am just severely average. My head was filled with these big ideas from such a young age, so now that I am 23 and just leading a normal life its left me feeling underwhelmed with what I have achieved so far. I hold no resentment to my family for giving me such big dreams, it makes me realize more than ever how loved I am.
**Insert throwback photos to when I believed I would be a world renowned model and doctor by the age of 20. Can’t blame a kid for dreaming. #model