Sitting in a California café in my late twenties, a friend sitting beside me, who had a wee crush on me, made the off-hand commented, "She should be a model." I, jokingly pointed to my face, full of hard acne at the time from Lithium and other psychotropic medicines and side effects from yet undiagnosed celiac disease, "Not with this face!"
Yet, deep underneath the need to detract from the compliment, I held an inner gratitude for the friend's comment. For throughout my whole life, I had had a desire never yet to be tried for, deeply buried with the hopes of pleasing others whose choices for my life reversed my own journey, to pursue the creative professions such as performance and modeling. In my earlier twenties, I had tried my hand at pursuing theatre in college only to feel more beaten down by both the rejections of that profession along side the continual abuse of a toxic boyfriend among other negative inputs. I had watched enviously as friends' modeled au natural for art classes and workshops, inwardly wishing I had the guts to do that while outwardly proclaiming the Christian rhetoric of likening it to the striptease or even pornography.
Finally, in my early married life, struggling to find work with a husband who not only abused me but would disappear into his own mind of psychotic conspiracies, I finally took the stage at a local art gallery for the first time as life model. Yet not too successfully the first time, I continued forth on that journey, at last scoring a recurring gig as a model for the local university and community college from about 2014 until present day. This impetus to pursue this profession came on the heels of my auditioning for my first play and successfully being cast, followed by several other voyages into the theatre world.
Eventually, this actively choosing and carving out my own path led to my freedom from my abusive husband and continual release from other toxic relations. As I further stepped boldly into being true to myself, healing continued in full force, and the knowledge of success as a place of inner peace became a mainstay.
In recent years, during the pause and reset of the lockdown of Covid19, I was able to reflect upon my life, my connections therein, and realize the fullness of what I have achieved without fully acknowledging or realizing my own successful abilities. From years of personal abuse history, I still found it necessary to downplay and degrade my successes, strengths, and self-worth. Furthermore, the years of fundamentalist Christianity as well the left over puritanical beliefs still lingering even today upon our society, kept me from fully appreciating my career as life model, that a good portion of my income has come from such source for nearly a decade, and I have become sought after in that way.
Perhaps, all that long ago, my friend's comment was a prophecy, that which, was meant to lead me to my true calling if only I would be obedient to my inner voice and desire.