Thursday, 21 July 2016

Dear Diary: Real Life Role Models

When I started High School as a 4 foot something 12 year old I used to look up to all of the older girls in absolute awe and marvel at how they had it all figured out as they floated down the corridors with their perfect hair and high school boyfriends in tow (until I actually reached their age and realised that, wait a minute, I still feel 12 and they probs did too). Before long, there was one girl in particular who stood out to me and she instantly became my favourite. There's no denying that she was beautiful but it was way more than that. She seemed so kind and clever and carried big folders and textbooks around with her wherever she went which just really made me feel like she had it together. For all I know she could have been the school's biggest biatch and needed so many textbooks because she kept failing everything but whenever she smiled or said hi to me I felt so cool and important because omg this is not a drill, an older girl actually acknowledged me. Maybe it was because she just felt really uncomfortable that I kept staring at her and her bloomin folders, who knows. But the point is at that time in my life she was a role model to me and not an airbrushed, unattainable one famous for doing goodness knows what (or goodness know who), but a real life 17/18 year old girl who probably had absolutely no clue of my admiration for her.


And although that all sounds slightly creepy and conjures up images of 12 year old me stalking the corridors on the lookout for folder girl just so I could say hi to her, I think it's actually really important because here I am, a good 8 years later, writing about her because she made that much of an impact on me. And I think we probably all have unknowingly had younger girls look up to us or at least take notice of us at some point or another and although it seems sweet and flattering it kind of brings a bit of responsibility because what sort of message are we sending out?

Now I'm not saying we all have to walk around like Mother Theresas, never putting a foot wrong because who knows who could be lurking in the trees watching our every move. But I hope that if someone were to look at me they would see someone who doesn't condone tearing others down, someone who knows that as a girl you have way more to bring than just your looks, someone who works hard for their successes and someone who recognises that it's alright not to have it all together a good 98% of the time. Because I can assure you that they are all of the things I needed to see growing up. 

I am honestly such a believer in the fact that growing up as a girl in this social media age is proper crappy. I know how hard it is to be 15 and scrolling through your Instagram Explore page, literally wanting to cry because you feel that you look like a deflated baked potato whos been in the oven a bit too long and that everyone in the world seems to be on a beach in Thailand except from you. It's awful. Like literally the worst. But celebs and Insta stars aren't real and I swear people are getting more skilled on Photoshop by the day. So sometimes it's just sooo nice and even comforting to have real role models who are just living their lives at school or work, with some occasional bouts of acne and an appreciation for the flab hiding invention that is high waisted jeans. 

So as ordinary, normal girls who are slaves to the dry shampoo and don't have a show on MTV, don't under-estimate your power and influence because there's a good chance that there's a 12 year old Emma looking at you and thinking 'omg she smiled at me'. And as crazy as it sounds, knowing that that might be the case motivates me to be kinder to others and myself which I guess is never a bad thing. Because at the end of the day we've got to look out for gal pals of all ages because growing up is bloomin hard and if we can make it that bit easier and show that we've been able to come out of the other side fairly unscathed and actually a pretty decent person, then good deed done for the day. Now go reward yourself with some Hobnobs my babes. 
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7 comments

  1. Love your post. Real life role models should be authentic and as you say not tear people down, be supportive, have a great work ethic and what's wrong with that old fashioned word - nice!

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    1. Thank you, that's so true. It's almost not seen as cool to be nice these days! Xx

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  2. I think real life role models will keep us all standing with our two feet on the ground.

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  3. I LUVEDDDD this post Emma. I am at that age where family's lil ones come up to for advises and I can see they're inspired by what I do. This is a huge responsibility itself. However, there was a time in college when loud mean-ish girls would make me want to 1) join the clique for better spotlight 2) die of depression of not enough spotlight
    but in the end, turned out being loud and mean wouldn't help in real life or my loved ones. It's a hard choice to CHOOSE who you want to be and in what way, but the consequences are also so apparent.


    Noor | Noor's Place

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    1. Thanks so much Noor! That's so true, I think you eventually get to an age when you realise that the type of person you want to be is your choice and your choice only. Xx

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  4. Great post! Real life role models are so interesting because so many people look up to fake celebrities and then there's me like, "No, I look up to strong as hell women in my family and true starlets who argued for equality like Ginger Rogers."

    S .x http://ramblingsofayoungprgirl.blogspot.com

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Love Emma

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