"The label you give yourself cannot impact external forces that are not motivated by your own psychology or influenced by a third party's pre-existing consciousness of you. We are all presented with reasons to struggle which come from completely external forces; to pretend that one is not struggling is either arrogance or an admission of defeat. To admit that one is struggling is a sign and a source of strength." - Evan A. Baker

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Seventh Grade All Over Again

I watched the season finale of America's Next Top Model with my boo last night and was getting really sick and tired of Ann's complaining about how she was made fun of because of her height. "Get OVER it!" I kept yelling at the screen, "Shut up!!"

My boo asked me to pause the show. "Have YOU ever been made fun of in high school?" he asked. "Me?" I replied. "Of course not! I was perfect!" He thought for a second, "Yeah, me neither, I guess. So you can't really fault her." "OF COURSE I WAS MADE FUN OF!!! I was overweight and COULDN'T CLOSE MY MOUTH OVER MY TEETH!!!"

Have I mentioned I had an overbite that was so bad that when I closed my mouth, my teeth were still visible? That we couldn't afford to correct it until I was 15? A seven year old with buck teeth is adorable, a sophomore in high school is sad.

Oh Yeah. I also wore glasses.
I got made fun of A LOT. So I decided one very important thing when I was in 7th grade: That the whispering and laughing behind my back was NOT ABOUT ME at all. That the pretty girls with their long straight hair and perfect smile and trendy size 4 clothes couldn't care less about me and whatever they were laughing at was probably about something else.

I turned 15, I naturally lost weight by landscaping the city every summer in a youth volunteer program, got braces and then three years later moved to Southern California to start college. Where no one knew me.

Imagine my surprise when I learned that I was "hot." I just got my braces off a month before I left my hometown and was a healthy size 9. Because I had spend the last 7 years not scrutinizing my body and face (cause, again, why bother - I had BUCK TEETH and no one could see past it) and instead reading, writing, and loving wordplay. All of a sudden, I was a freshman co-ed who was cute, smart and completely oblivious to my sexuality. Oh, sure, I could flirt: chubby girls with bad teeth learn to flirt to get laughs. (which explains why when I need to be sultry or sexy, I laugh and go immediately to goofy; it's where I'm more comfortable - another story for another time) So there I was - deemed hot by several boys in the film department who were of my kind - awkward and dorky in their youth but somehow developed into extremely pleasant looking.

And now I'm an actress going out on the biggest auditions I've ever had and I'm in fricking 7th grade all over again.

I had an audition for a couple of lines in a big studio film yesterday and walked into a lobby filled with tall, statuesque blonds with perfect, stylish clothes, designer handbags, in season shoes and longer resumes.

I am Ann on America's Next Top Model.

Why am I suddenly thinking I'm not pretty enough to be in the same room with these girls? Why am I thinking someone's made a huge mistake categorizing me with these beauties?

So I had to remember: The Casting Director chose my picture. The Casting Director picks stunning women. I am a stunning woman. I don't look like them, but I am beautiful.

We are all beautiful. No one else looks like me. No one else looks like you.

For the Casting Director, I am simply One More Option.

Today I had another audition, this time for a pilot and I walked into the lobby and felt differently about the situation. Here was a room full of beautiful young women and I was one of them. Here is a room filled with women just like me, where we're all hoping this is the audition that will get us the callback that will get us the screen test that will get us the role. It could go to any one of us.

What a difference. Less nerves and therefore, less overacting, just because I forced myself to remember that I am beautiful. I'm wearing a dress from Ross, boots from Goodwill, and I deserve to be in this room, counted among the more successful, the more experienced, the more who knows what else.

We all feel insecure from time to time, and when I was in college I came up with a theory that as far as I know, has been proven over and over: At any given time - ANY GIVEN TIME - you have at least three people who have crushes on you.

Adds a little bounce in your step, eh?

It should.

You're beautiful.


  1. I hope you're counting me as one of those people who has a crush on you.

    This is exactly the way I feel whenever I get called in for Entourage. And then I remember that all the 5'8 models are too tall for the guys on the show. Hah! Short girls rule. :)

  2. I don't think anyone remembers their middle school/junior high school years fondly. Everyone was insecure. However, you are beautiful. Your agent is not going to send you out for something that you don't have a shot at. The idea is to build you up. Not waste your time. Only send you out for things where you might get it. If you are there, you deserve to be there. And you are totally hot.

  3. Ah I love this post. I especially love your crush theory - definitely a confidence boost.

    People who grow into their beauty come equip with more life skills, experiences and strength then any generic beauty. Its the recipe for success if you ask me.

    You are most certainly beautiful!

  4. Oh my god, but I needed this post - thanks!
    I always get so self-conscious when I walk in to audition waiting rooms. I'm all, "They are going to realize I'm heavier than all these girls!". I have to remind myself that they saw my headshot, they saw my stats, and they called me in!

  5. I love this post. I feel the same way a lot of times. I always feel weird walking into an audition and getting the stares but right before I go in, I always say. "I'm going to get the part because I'm a great actress and I deserve this."

    Thanks for sharing.
    XOXO Actress Confessions

  6. It's these little reminders that we all need on a daily basis. Believe it or not, guys go through the same thing. I don't know how many auditions I've gone on where there are all these guys who are already taller than me, in their ill-fitting yet apparently stylish v-neck t-shirts, boots thrusting them higher into the atmosphere...and me. Mop-headed me.

    But I'm there for a reason, just like you are. We're perfect and right for the part. We belong there.

    (also helps when the guys open their mouths and un-intelligence falls to the floor)

    You are beautiful!!


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