My day’s been great; I woke up in gratitude, in a bed – for me to sleep comfortably in every night, with oxygen – for making life possible, with my sense of sight – for letting me see the colours of life, and a phone – for making it easy to stay in touch with others and meet people all over the world! It’s all good, always waking up in gratitude to set my day.

My story isn’t just one, it consists of a series of extreme stories, but the people and the circumstances were all gifts. I’ve always lived in several worlds at one time and what that looks like is this. I was gang raped at 17; I never ever believed I was a victim of anything even though people kept giving me that title. The more I turned inward, the more I was able to see first-hand that you do nothing for people when you label them with something because that’s where you feel they are.

The violence of my gang rape resulted in bruising, physical loss and all my teeth started falling out and cracking when I was 19. I didn’t have dental care and due to emotional trauma, I didn’t want anyone touching me. I was always in the emergency room with abscesses and I couldn’t even eat proper meals due to my jaw not being aligned.

What hurt the most is people would look at me and think I was a crackhead. No pill or medication ever numbed me enough to take that pain away. Living with unsightly teeth for over 15 years affected my whole life including my self-esteem; it was holding me back from living. Job loss and homelessness became part of my life and at times I didn’t feel like a human. I had constant infections that would work their way into my face and I was hospitalized due to abscess at least twice a month. I had trained myself to bend over and laugh or cover my smile up with my hand and I would distance myself from people so much that I was on the outskirts of life feeling anxious and too embarrassed to even go to my kids’ school functions.

Nonetheless, I still smiled from my soul. A smile is very soulful, it represents love and beauty and love starts with loving yourself, so I always said ‘when’. I knew I was going to have pearly white teeth and better days were going to come to me. I always knew I would help other people learn too smile again, it was just a case of ‘when’.

While I was homeless, I found passion and energy inside myself to create a neighbourhood garden for the homeless community. I had no car, so I carried the gardening supplies on the bus. I knew that even with needs of my own, I could still help others. I was blessed and won the ‘Deserving Diva’ award that recognises deserving people who contribute to the community and need help. The award included a complete make-over and dentist work. A new smile is a sign of new beginning; my smile gave me a new life.

I started worked in luxury real estate and in my 2nd year of being a licensed real estate agent, I went through a divorce and lost my car, but I ended up being the fastest growing agent, with the highest commission in the South, and I became the Top Ranked Agent in Georgia. I was bullied in real estate for not fitting in but that never stopped me. I had purple hair every day and tattoos and I purposely did not change; I did not transform. My bold energy made a statement that either people loved or hated.

Most life coaches will tell you about a thinking process, the ‘journey’, and ‘55 steps to…’ or the ‘5 secrets they don’t want you to know’. That is the scenic route; I don’t believe there are steps. You have the power right NOW to choose who you want to be in every second. I’ve lived it over and over again and so my life is a demonstration of this fact. I have a mastery in choosing happiness over and over again regardless of life’s happenings. Reading this, you might even think that what I have shared doesn’t apply to you, but it does. I don’t need to know your history. I know you are perfect, and I know for a fact you are “Still Beautiful” morning, noon, and night.

I chose to be who you see today. I know I survived for you and all that read this story. I am bold and courageous about this. I want to invite people to a liberated space where you take off your gloves because there’s no one there to fight, it’s just you. I help liberate people, so they can remember who they are. People ask me ‘why are you so happy’ and the truth is because I choose to be regardless of life happenings.

When people go through situations, they often describe themselves as being ‘broken’. I thought about that word, but I thought that’s not right, You’re Still Beautiful. I’m Still Beautiful.