Meredith Graves is constantly inspiring. She’s articulate to a pulse, persistently engaged with her diurnal observations. As an astute Virgo, she can give language to feelings that are so ephemeral, making thoughts tangible. Her ability to ascertain her exact feelings and then relay it poetically is magnetic. Her video on Stylelikeu was deeply affecting for many reasons—but primarily because she was able to dissect so much of what was causing her pain, which has/had been my singular pursuit, well, for a while now.
After this talk I considered a lot of things. Again, she left me thinking, feeling, searching for answers. There was one thing she said in particular that I’m still trying to grapple with: she said that she doesn’t care if she’s beautiful, because she doesn’t think she is. It struck a chord—if Meredith could say with such steadfastness that beauty didn’t matter, why was I so concerned with it? What was wrong with me that I was so obsessed with the idea of beauty, too concerned with mine, or my ‘lack of,’ sometimes? I’m still processing it, still coming to terms with it, almost everyday I’m engaging with what she said, and it keeps shifting. Did she say that? Did she mean this? This is her power: she makes you think.
There’s been an impulse in my mind since the interview to tell her: but you’re so beautiful! Which is whack because I’m aware that what I think about Meredith doesn’t matter. What matters is how Meredith thinks about Meredith—and how she navigates this world with that. Her addendum to the beauty point was that as a privileged person—someone who is cis, able-bodied, tall—she had to reconcile the truth that she felt ugly sometimes, and that was okay. That was her reality. And in order to be true she needed to accept the contradiction. Needless to say, I admire her completely.