By: Stefanny Lima, Guest Blogger
Last month, Viola Davis won a SAG Award for her work on ABC’s hit How to Get Away With Murder. Her acceptance speech was inspirational, like her, and made me cry. The part that I put on a page of quotes is: “thank you to all the people who love me exactly how God made me.”
Viola’s final words are pure and honest.
There’s a moment in our lives that we ask: why am I like that? Why am I not like somebody else? I discussed those questions with myself when I was 15 years old and the answer was: the fault is on my parents.
I spent part of my youth fighting against who I am. I projected who I wanted to be because I was worried about the now (that now was 2001). I used to see myself as a weirdo on high school. I wasn’t popular but I used to talk to everyone. I had my BFFs, and they didn’t belong to the popular gang either. I was in a safe place to be myself, but I was focused on creating this “better version” of me that ended up being the worst.
During that age, my parents split up. I watched brutal changes. During that time, I didn’t have any friends who were passing through the same thing. I was ashamed, it made me start to pretend that everything was fine. All the worries I could have had, like grades, were nothing compared to my need to look perfect.
Look perfect: my old perpetual idea to succeed and to survive.
This cost me part of my health. But I wasn’t aware of that. I was busy playing this game and blaming my parents.
Viola’s words could have saved me at that time. Everything became stressful because I was blinded by perfection. “Just perfect people can win,” I used to think. Life as a teenager easily hid another universal truth from me: the difference lies in our hands.
I wanted to be perfect, but I was putting a fake smile on my face and creating this false impression that everything was ok. And it wasn’t. Trying to be perfect consumed my life. I wasn’t helping me. I was disrespecting me.
And then I got ill. The wake up call.
What Viola said made me revisit my 15-year-old self. A time of pure insecurity. I remembered how I used to hate my curly hair (and now I love it). I used to hate every curve of my body (that gave me an eating disorder and was really hard to fight). I believed, blindly, that I couldn’t go far if I wasn’t perfect.
I was totally wrong.
When I woke up, I saw women like Viola winning the world. By being who they are. And I found myself wanting to be that kind of woman.
Viola Davis is an actress who inspires every woman, every day. She succeeds, against all odds, being who she is. She reminded me, again, that I still can win. For that, I need to respect my body and my mind. I know that. And you deserve to know that. Especially when you feel that you don’t belong, because you do.
We all do. We just need to find our path and keep going. And remember that there are people who love you exactly how God made you. Don’t give up!
And thank you Viola Davis for telling us an universal truth.
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Stefs Lima has her own world called Random Girl (www.hey-randomgirl.com.br). She is a journalist, lives in Brazil and spends a lot of her time writing (A LOT). Secret desires: continue to inspire people and create more and more stories to share.