This week, I got the chance to meet one of my favorite public figures: professional wrestler and plus-size model Nia Jax.
I had never really paid much attention to wrestling (especially women’s wrestling) because I felt so removed from the women on the show. Sure, they were powerful and talented … but I couldn’t make that personal connection.
Then, I laid eyes on Nia.
This stunningly beautiful plus-size woman walked down the ramp toward the ring, hopped in, and absolutely kicked butt. She was respected, she was celebrated, and she was plus-size while doing it. My entire heart swelled. I had never seen someone like Nia, and honestly, I cried.
When I heard that not only would she be at theCURVYcon, but that I would get to watch her walk the runway and get to interview her, I lost it. On the runway, her presence is electric. She’s commanding without saying a word, and every step she took down the runway was strong, beautiful, and powerful.
When I met her later on, I knew that I would ask her about her feelings about being plus-size, and I had no idea that I would get so much more than that. She was so powerful and strong in a completely different way than her heel character. She gave wonderful advice for other people (all people, not just plus-size people) on how to feel great in your skin.
She let us into her personal life by talking about how her cousin, Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, constantly encourages her to be confident and comfortable in her body no matter what. In fact, just the night before, he had tweeted out a Yahoo Lifestyle article about Nia’s runway debut:
— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) September 9, 2017
Jax shared that even Johnson had struggled in the past with confidence in his signature stature because he looked different. She talked about dispelling myths, and fashion rules that plus-size women are expected to follow. For Nia, it was stripes. She wore stripes on the runway on purpose and laid that notion right to rest.
It was so unexpected to hear from someone so beautiful and strong that they’ve felt the same uneasy feelings that we all have. I can’t tell you how comforting it was.
At the end of the conversation, she told me that she loved our talk because it was so natural. I was flattered, of course, but especially because it’s something we have in common. WWE fans adore Nia because she’s a pillar of unapologetic strength. I hope to inspire people the way that Nia does every day, and it’s pretty epic when your idols are exactly what you wanted them to be.
More highlights from Yahoo Lifestyle: