Miss Piggy visited AOL BUILD I was so excited. The Muppet diva who I have admired for so many years was in studio to talk about how awesome she really is.
I know this might sound silly saying that a puppet actually helped my self-esteem as a child, but it's true. Rest in peace to the genius knows as Jim Henson; it was because of him, I was able to see a slight representation of myself through a vivacious puppet version of me known as Miss Piggy.
I have been fat all of my life. When I was younger, I was teased at times because of my weight; some days I could tolerate it, other days were tougher. On Saturday mornings, my brother would wake me up to watch X-Men with him and I did so reluctantly. I grew to love X-men and I became a fan of the female superheroes, naturally. But there was a part of me that was slightly envious of these beautiful mutants because they were so perfect and I, too, wanted to be perfect.
Then the Muppet Babies would come on and I would get lost in the imaginary world of these Muppets and their secret adventures under the couch, but that wasn't what stood out to me the most. The thing that excited me the most was Miss Piggy; her confidence, her style, her unapologetic sense of self-worth -- it was revolutionary to me! I began to idealize the idea of Miss Piggy because I wanted to be like that too! The notion that a pig, something people tend to use as a slur to insult overweight people, was now my ideal persona... I wanted to be fabulous and have an infectious personality that would stand out in a crowd. I also wanted to be appreciated for my quirkiness and plum statue as well. I didn't want to accept the, "You're pretty for a big girl," backhanded compliments anymore. I soon gathered the confidence to stop people right in their tracks after them saying, " You're pretty".
You don't think Miss Piggy is capable of being a model of feminism? She controls her career, she picks her man and demands to be courted... and if she wants to wear designer clothes, she isn't worried about if it can fit or not -- she prefers everything custom-made anyway.
2015 was a big year for Miss Piggy, too.
Miss Piggy received Sackler Center First Awards at the Brooklyn Museum which "is an annual event honoring extraordinary women who are first in their fields."
Miss Piggy was chosen "for more than forty years of blazing feminist trails with determination and humor, and for her groundbreaking role inspiring generations the world over." And although she is known more for her love of fashion and a certain frog, Elizabeth Sackler, the founder of the center,told USA Today that the spectacular sow is deserving.
"She has spirit, she has determination, she has grit," Sackler said. "She has inspired children to be who you are -- and this squares very directly with feminism."
As an adult, I can say I'm pretty confident about myself. Are there things about myself I can work on? Sure, but that is all of us. I will not apologize for the width of my hips, my bosom that runneth over or my sexuality. I deserve to be sexy, to be courted, admired, recognized for my intelligence and determination, stylish and most importantly respected. When people say Representation Matters, I believe it is very important for all of us to see positive images of characters that we can relate to or who we can aspire to be in media and in our culture.
Even though many might take this lightly, as a child, seeing Miss Piggy live her truth was important to me. In fact, it still is. So much so, I had the opportunity to walk during New York Fashion Week for Full Blossom Magazine, and I wore a look created by Stallion Style Designs. My heels were high, my confidence was higher and I walked for a great cause: to raise diabetes awareness.
So thank you, Miss Piggy, for your influential style, humor and assertiveness. You were one of the vital instruments in my self-esteem growing up.