Identity has always been a power for me; it has been self-care to carve out my identity, take that out into the world, and find a balance between what I want from it and what it has given to me. A strong identity has carried me through a lot.
I became obsessed with my appearance at a young age. I saw a warped reflection of myself whenever I looked in a mirror, and for years I struggled with depression, anxiety, and, most of all, a negative body image. When I turned 18 my current agency contacted me for representation. They stand for dismantling beauty standards, combatting tokenism, and supporting healthy lifestyles for their models. Today, I’m still repairing a distorted mental picture of myself and breaking negative thought patterns, and I’m improving, step by step.
As the world faces a pandemic—alone together, as we’re called to weather the storm in solitude—we’re asking our community: what does self-care mean to you From the YTTP family and our community, here’s what some of us are doing to practice self-care.
Welcome to day (insert your personal count) of solitude, a.k.a government-mandated social distancing or shelter-in-place, the most essential practice to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Let’s be real, it feels like it’s been years. We’re all doing our best to hang in there—but we also know the idea of staying home for an untold number of additional weeks feels daunting, lonely, and uncertain. If you’re in need of some connection, albeit virtual, we have that here.
“What do you want to be when you grow up?” For me, it was an astronaut. Curiosity about the unknown was always a part of my nature. I remember the freedom and excitement I had as a child, so pure and honest—then life happened. I veered away from what it meant to be myself, and I was yearning for it back. As I began to discover self-love through self-care, things became more clear, life became more exciting, and I became happier.
Photography courtesy of Becca Menichetti