The media actually feeds society a lot of very toxic ideas and standards when it comes to beauty. When you look at the TV shows, movies, and magazines all around you, there is always this slogan or campaign that is pushing for an unreasonable standard for beauty. That’s why there are certain sets of people who are conventionally considered attractive or beautiful while all other people are left to feel insecure.
Try peering into the fashion industry alone. It’s usually dominated by a lot of white women who are thin and have impeccable skin. However, these are beauty traits that don’t necessarily apply to the vast majority of the population. And that’s why a lot of girls feel alienated and underrepresented.
Statistics have shown that around 13% of people who are living in the United States actually have disabilities. And a lot of advocates are making the argument that the current standard that is being pushed by contemporary media is vile and unacceptable. There is some serious rhetoric going around about how everyone deserves fair representation in media.
And fortunately, there are a few outliers out there who are actually willing to break the mold. These are the ones who are seeking to redefine the unreasonable standards of beauty that a lot of us actually adhere to these days. By choosing to go against the mainstream standards and ideals, these people are promoting a very healthy sense of self-love and body acceptance.
It’s also a much healthier approach to broaching the topic of looks and appearances in this contemporary society.
Meet Chelsea Werner
Chelsea Werner is a gymnast and a model who hails from California. She is only 26 years old and she is a very special lady. You might think that what sets her apart from other people is that she is both a gymnast AND a model which is practically unheard of these days. But that’s not the whole story. Chelsea was diagnosed with Down’s Syndrome as a baby.
Down’s Syndrome is a chromosomal condition that is present in people who have an extra copy of chromosome 21.
Any woman of any age, background, or race is capable of giving birth to a baby who has this syndrome. However, the chances are dramatically increased if a woman is older. A 20-year old lady has around a 1 in 2,000 chance of giving birth to a baby with Down’s Syndrome. However, the numbers shoot up to around 1 in 50 for women who are aged 45 or older.
Down’s Syndrome can cause moderate learning disabilities along with some less-than-ideal physical development as well. Some of these physical traits include having underdeveloped mouths, slanting eyes, and below-average height.
One other common feature of Down’s Syndrome is having low levels of muscle mass. Chelsea’s parents were once told that she would probably have to live with substantial difficulty for the rest of her life because of this condition. Regardless, they still tried to push her to live a fairly normal life to the best of their abilities. They encouraged her to try out spots and to engage in various physical activities. Even at a very young age, Chelsea was already doing regular training for gymnastics.
And throughout her young career, she has definitely proved the doubters wrong. She has had a very decorated career as a gymnast. Chelsea holds ownership over a very impressive collection of various awards including winning the Special Olympics National Gymnastics Championship. And she didn’t win it just once. She won it 4 times. Chelsea’s coach has stressed the amount of work ethic that Chelsea exhibits in her day-to-day life.
Chelsea The Model
Back in 2016, mega-fashion brand H&M actually chose to feature Chelsea in a campaign that decided to highlight the stories of athletes who have had to overcome some very difficult trials on their roads to success. In that same year, Chelsea was also asked to be a model for New York Fashion Week. And then two years later in 2018, she was interviewed for a spot on Teen Vogue.
However, she has been turned down by various modelling agencies and it shouldn’t come to anyone’s surprise that Chelsea isn’t always going to appeal to everyone. But she is still fighting hard to actually break the glass ceiling for people like herself.
Pride Against Prejudice
Chelsea and her mother are continuously working hard to break away from the prejudices and stereotypes that people attach to people like Chelsea. And she has done a very good job at that. A lot of Chelsea’s followers on social media are parents of children who have been diagnosed with Down’s Syndrome. And Chelsea serves as a beacon of hope for a lot of these kids who want to pursue careers in sports or fashion.
Chelsea is paving the way for a lot of other special people like herself. And it’s exciting to see what the future has in store for her.