Each month we choose a Super Heroines, Etc. member to feature on our blog. This month we chose Taylor Szasz, a long time SHE member, recent presenter at our SHE Stories: Body Positivity event, and all-around super heroine.
You have been a Super Heroine for a few years now and attended quite a few events. Which one has been your favorite and why?
It’s really hard to say which event was my favorite because I’ve gone to so many that were so vastly different! It may be a toss-up between geocaching, Nerdy Networking, and SHE Speaks because I got such precious memories out of each one! I now regularly geocache, which has helped me get more exercise and fresh air. Nerdy Networking has stayed part of my work like in making plans for achievable goals. I also met people there that I am still in touch with, and count as very close friends, which was my whole goal in joining! And finally, I really liked being a part of SHE Speaks. It was a really emotional, empowering event. I was so scared to be up in front of people, yet I felt so supported!
This month’s theme is Body Positivity and you participated in one of our related events where you shared a story. Could you tell us what story you shared?
I shared a prose piece on what it was like undergoing extensive craniofacial reconstructive surgery (if you wanted, I would be happy to send you the file). I was born with a birth defect called unilateral cleft lip and palate. So my face wasn’t formed properly in the womb, and left me with a lot of problems, including hearing, speech, orthodontic, and obviously cosmetic issues. I was teased pretty mercilessly about my looks, which fed into some pretty self destructive behavior. Once I hit my own personal rock bottom, however, I began to see my inherent worth and made the scarring and experiences part of my personal identity!
As shy as I can be, I actually love getting up on stage and performing. One of my friends is a pretty prolific author, and she invited me to the event. She is always encouraging me to write, because she feels like I have some interesting life experiences to share (an opinion I humbly agree with!). I also knew that I was going to be speaking in a judgment free zone (SHE and Shameless Grounds? Talk about a safe space), so that helped me make the decision to get up and share with everyone!
Beyond the story you shared, what are some other areas of your life where you practice body positivity?
What advice would you give to someone who maybe isn’t always practicing self-love?
Author: Carolyn Noe
Carolyn is the Founder & Executive Director of Super Heroines, Etc. She is a recent transplant to Cincinnati and lives with her husband and her dog. She regularly nerds out about Parks & Rec, Firefly, and Pride & Prejudice.