As one of the youngest grandchildren to a Colombian master New York seamstress and the only one with blond hair and blue eyes. I was doted on, pampered and objectified even before I could understand the harm that does to the psyche of a girl, later woman. My hair was lightened as early as two years of age. In order to make my whiteness stand out. My dresses where all one of a kind originals that where designed specifically for me by my Grandmother who sewed for designers like Gucci.
Don’t get me wrong the Greek side were equal offenders. Noticing my comfort with nudity and emphasizing how it was a good trait to have. The beauty of the nude body was ingrained by my Greek European mentors. Feeling beautiful and sensual was driven by them when I started to develop as a woman in the 80’s. As a young girl my smile and eyes would manipulate them into defending me even when my plight was not defendable.
Approval was important and looks ran that approval. People would approach my mother on the streets of New York to ask what family she was nanny to? Sometimes photographers would ask to take pictures of this little white blonde grey/blue eyed exotic child. Given my heritage there was no mistaking my natural born sexuality. So much so that I remember feeling sexual at an age many would deem inappropriate.
Conflicting messages of how a young girl should feel about her body infiltrated my entire life path. On one side I was told and expressly shown my unique beauty would open up opportunities that no one else in my family would get. On the other hand my fearful intensely naive mother would body shame me and found herself angry with how I easily attracted attention and love.