My world collapsed.
I’m still standing.
PRINCESS PROFILES: The story of Jasmin and finding peace from within.
10 years ago I never imagined my life as full as it is today…
Growing up wasn’t easy for me. At the age of five I was molested by a family friend. I remember falling into the trap of blaming myself like many victims do. I also grew up without a father in my life. We often negate the important role that a man plays in the life of his daughter. He teaches her some of the critical lessons a young girl needs to develop her inner Princess at an early age.
In school I was picked on because of my complexion. The fact that my clothes came from the Salvation Army didn’t help. It was tough for my mom trying to raise me and my two brothers without any help.
Since I didn’t have the coolest shoes or clothes like other kids I would stay inside during recess and read. I was secretly obsessed with books.
I remember one afternoon when this girl picked on me in front of all the other kids. At first I laughed it off like it didn’t bother me but later I cried. I felt worthless because no one else seemed to find value in me. I didn’t believe that there was anyone who saw the princess in me and who loved me for who I am. Little did I know that wasn’t true.
Knowing how passionate I was about poetry, one day after church my mom introduced me to a poet visiting from New York. His name was Jeffrey and he had a smile that could light up the room. I remember him coming to church and watching him recite his poetry in front of a large audience. While everyone was watching him on stage I turned to see the people in the crowd and observed how their facial expressions changed. His enthusiasm and energy was contagious. Jeffrey helped me laugh and smile again. Eventually, he took me under his wing and became a father-figure in my life.
One time I was expressing my concern to him about something I was nervous about. When I was finished he said to me, “Jasmin, what are the last four letters in African-American?” After I told him, I-C-A-N, his face lit up and mine did too. That day changed my life. I finally began to believe in myself. I promised myself that I would hold onto that moment no matter what storm came my way.
Later that year Jeffrey passed away. I wanted to find a way to express my feelings and found it through writing. Jeffrey had a way of shining so much life into others’ lives that I wanted to keep his light shining in the one way I knew I could. Writing turned out to be a positive outlet for me. I told myself that life is too short to stay down. I began to love myself more and more, fully embracing who I am. I decided to let my inner princess shine by doing the things that make me happy.
In spite of the tough times and challenges God showed me that he was with me — even when it didn’t seem like it. In His Word it says, “If God is for us, who can ever be against us?” (Romans 8:31). So when it feels like the world is against you remember, God’s got your back. Today I am writing, dancing and shining my Princess light everywhere I go. Because I-C-A-N!
I hope my story inspires you to discover your inner princess.
Are you on the road back to Princess?
We have all struggled with self-esteem, friendships, acceptance, beauty, and more. How have you overcome these struggles? Submit your story (500 words) along with your age to be featured on our site. 3 lucky winners will receive a Princess SPA package for 2, a signed copy of the Princess Within for Teens from the author, Mrs. Serita Ann Jakes!
Submit stories to: Back2Princess@gmail.com
To read more Princess Profile stories, check out the Princess Within website.