Fashion is something that stays with everyone, depending on their level of confidence. Fashion modeling, on the other hand, sparks the interest of every young girl, typically, around the age of 13; it is quite common. When she becomes an adult (over 40, 50) and is still fashion-conscious, this shows that she is, not only, taking pride in her appearance but is also going the extra mile to maintain her self-confidence in spite of all the negative energies from society.
I started out in the fashion world when I was approached by a modeling coach at the age of 14. I went on to Fashion Industries High School but later transferred out because they focused on activities such as sewing, designing and fashion buying; I was more interested in modeling. Even though I went on to learn a skill, I remained on the path of fashion modeling with local department stores and designers.
Because I was always intrigued with the corporate world, I geared my attention to business while doing little fashion gigs on the side.
While enjoying family life with my husband and children, I began to feel the thirst of my passion re-surfacing as I was constantly being reminded by others that I should be doing something in fashion. Things were going well for me, in that, I was moving up the corporate ladder pretty quickly. I worked in the legal sector and had a small staff. Because this part of my life was in place, I gave my job precedence but began to re-visit my housed passion for fashion. I got in touch with a photographer that worked with Essence magazine and had my portfolio done. I started to pursue fashion jobs here and there for fun but stayed focused on the corporate world — it just seemed like a more serious and stabled platform for the lifestyle I had. The years went by where I was taking spoonfuls of fashion that way (doing shows here and there) and kept abreast of the market. I rode along paying attention to the new face and when they were replaced by another.
When I started out in fashion, faces such as Beverly Johnson, Iman, and Christy Brinkley were hot on the market and were my idols. In my 20’s, 30’s and 40’s, I was looking on and admiring candidates such as Linda Evangelist, Niomi Campbell, Christy Turlington, Karen Alexander and Tyra Banks. There were more on this list but these were the names I knew.
Today, I occasionally look on with admiration but is on my own quest (well into my 50’s), enjoying my two passions. I am still mixing business with pleasure (doing business along with fashion) and loving it. They, both, give me the physic satisfaction and rush I need to keep challenging and wowing myself.
I recently did a fashion shoot at the very location I worked at when I was 14 years of age. It was done with the first group I joined. I felt the same thrill I had back then; only, it was light years ago (smiling). If that is not a blessing, I don’t know what is. I describe this as a blessing because when you can ignore all of the distractions that try to consume you in your midlife years and is able to stay laser-focused on your passion — that thing that keeps your light burning, nothing can beat that. For me, that is fashion and conducting business, along with giving back to the universe by helping others.
Modeling is said to have a short shelf life. I am not going to give a number or an opinion on that because I believe it depends, solely, on the individual. Take me, for example. My taste for fashion, as mentioned above, is still with me — even though I am now in my 50’s. I did not spend time hitting the sidewalks for gigs as the regular models back then because I had other priorities; modeling was something I enjoyed doing, but I was not pursuing it for a career.
Today, my love for fashion and modeling are not linked to any fantasy of being a model as when I first started out (at age 14). At this stage of my life, it has to do with setting an example. The word ‘model’ has several meanings when you look it up. The two I would say I fall under are prototype and representative. I say this because of the person that I have grown up to be. I am a divorced mother of three grown sons; I am a licensed real estate agent; I have an online business; I host a 28-minute inspirational talk show for middle-aged women on local television ; I also write pieces for this group to offer hope and inspiration. I am balanced — which takes great discipline, and I am healthy (as far as I know (smiling)). Now, it may seem as though I am tooting my own horn, but what I am really doing is pointing out how possible it is to go after what you want (at any age) and what makes you happy — in spite of what you are being told. Having the ability to fight off life’s challenges as a middle-aged woman, where you can maintain your confidence level and stay balanced during the turmoil is huge; that is a true blessing! So, if you are falling in this bracket, please take the time to pat yourself on the back because it is not an easy task. It takes great discipline and know-how!
Today, we are challenging you to join us in going after your passion. Stop allowing the negative energies of your environment to pull you down and stay focused on keeping yourself together mentally as well as physically. Your physical self is what everyone sees, so it is super important to take care of yourself. Aging is life’s process; unfortunately, everyone is experiencing it (smiling). I think the price comes when you can become a middle-aged woman (over 40, 50) and still look and feel as you did when you were in your 20’s and 30’s – that is a serious gift from above! So, again, take time to praise yourself. Thrive to learn all you can about you, for you, and then join us in the quest to ‘show and tell’ who you are through high fashion and bold confidence.
P.S. I just spent time explaining how I am ignoring the noise of society telling me how I should be in my midlife. I also went over how I work to keep my confidence at this time. How are you sending your message?