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Chronicles of a Former Beauty Pageant Queen: A Journey of Self-Discovery and Parenting

From the ages of 4 to 11, I was immersed in the world of beauty pageants. Every weekend seemed to revolve around glitter, gowns, and countless hours of hair and makeup. While the outside world saw a young girl adorned in crowns and titles, the reality was far from glamorous.

The pressure to perform flawlessly, both on stage and in everyday life, was immense. Hours of training, endless rehearsals, and the constant scrutiny of my appearance took a toll on my childhood. Despite the acknowledgments and prizes, the memories are tinged with tears and discomfort. They ended when I was old enough to vocalize my firm distaste in them.

Fast forward to motherhood, and I made a conscious decision to break the cycle. Body autonomy became the cornerstone of our home. My children are free to express themselves, whether it's through their hair, clothing, or makeup choices. My daughter's fairy locks, a source of envy for me, symbolize her autonomy and self-love.

The decision to embrace body autonomy wasn't just about rebelling against my past. It was about creating a safe space for my children to explore and embrace their individuality. Whether they choose to dress up in glitz and glam or revel in the joy of muddy adventures, their happiness and comfort are paramount.

As I watch my daughters navigate their own paths, I'm reminded that true beauty lies in authenticity and self-acceptance. While my journey as a former beauty pageant queen may have been fraught with challenges, it has led me to a place of empowerment and liberation.

So here's to embracing the messy, the imperfect, and the wonderfully unique. May we all find the courage to let our true selves shine, unapologetically and without restraint.

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