When Sol Sisters first began in Summer 2013, I had no idea what was to come of it. I only had one goal, for women to support women through the realms of mental health and wellness, creative arts, and beauty/fashion. In just over a year, we have a community of passionate volunteers serving under-resourced women through out the Bay Area, and beyond. As much as I want women professionals in our network to create a powerful impact on our community, I only hoped their giving would bless them ten-fold in return. Makeup-artist and Beauty Blogger Angelie Herreria is evidence that my hope is now coming alive.
Christine (Founder of Sol Sisters)
Two weekends ago i was invited to be a part of the SolSisters Revival, in conjunction with Glide SF. This event was put on to makeover 10 deserving women in the community who have survived some form of abuse or hardship. There were teams of makeup artists, hair stylists and fashion guru's who's sole purpose for the day was to make each and every one of the honored guests feel like a Queen. Not knowing what to expect I was simply hoping to do someone's makeup for the day, little did I know that I was in for an eye opening and fulfilling experience.
Each of the individuals served were survivors, they are examples of women who did not allow the mistakes or happenings from their past dictate the direction of their future. When meeting the women for the first time, you could feel the reluctancy from some women to participate. Funny enough, just like the guests, I was reluctant to reach out as well. I thought, "What if my guest HATES her makeup?" or "What if we have nothing to talk about?", all of the negative thoughts seemed to run through my mind before any of the positive ones showed up. As soon as I met my first guest (names and photos shall remain anonymous), all of my fears were wiped away.
One after another, each woman made her way through wardrobe, hair and makeup, each person effecting the volunteer they worked with. Throughout the room, you could hear pieces of each woman's life story, some of them talking about their children and families, others talking about their journey to the women's group at Glide. For every story that was told I couldn't believe the strength coming from each person. Some of the women have gone through pain and hardship that you wouldn't believe, but aside from their adversity, every woman met me with a confident smile and an open heart. It brought me back to reality to see that these women who have been through so much pain could still be so gracious and kindhearted. It was truly an honor to be in the presence of these amazing warriors.
After all of the women were given new clothes, hair styles and makeup, the only thing left was the final reveal. The excitement was contagious, you could feel the nervous energy in the room when the women took their steps towards the mirror. Instantly the tears began to well throughout the room, It was truly as if these women were SEEING themselves for the first time. Not just with the new clothes, hair and makeup, you could see that these women could see their inner beauty shine outwards.
The connection that women have with one another is strong. Once you get passed all of the insecure thoughts that naturally run through your mind and you begin to embrace the person in front of you, the bond between women can be powerful. Each woman for all her faults and insecurities is still a Woman at the end of the day, each woman is still a Queen. For me, to help these women see the beauty beneath the crown, reassures me that my talents serve a purpose and that nothing feeds me more than building a sisterhood and uplifting the women around me.
This day reminded me that I am the one who creates my destiny. I am in control of writing my story and no matter what mistakes and hardships i think i've gone through in the past, it has no bearing over who I am today and who I can be in the future. Everyone you meet has a story and a struggle, but just because you are going through a painful experience doesn't mean that you have to wear your pain.
I am not my mistakes and I am not my struggles, I am a Queen.