I got an email from a concert ticket service the other day that gave me a heads up about Janet Jackson coming to New Jersey in August for her Number Ones tour. My fingers instantly got itchy to go buy a ticket to the show, but the thing is…I just saw her show in March!!
But, listen, Janet put on such an incredible performance, that I would see it at LEAST two more times if I had the funds.
I have been following, and loving, Janet since I was about 9 years old. I can remember when my friend Jessica lent me the Control album…on cassette. I almost didn’t give it back! I loved singing and dancing along to her music, and soon enough, I began to want to BE her. I idolized her and even dressed like her (yes, including a key on one of my hoop earrings!).
I remember feeling so affirmed and validated when I watched Janet dance her butt off in the “Pleasure Principle” video, flipping off boxes and giving a sexy scowl. But while I loved her moves, what really spoke to me in that video was Janet’s physique. She had a real body, slightly thick and athletic, not super skinny like lots of celebs. She made me feel like, despite my chubbiness, I could not only be pretty but, maybe, even a superstar.
So, on my recent high after seeing Janet bring the house down in Connecticut, I ran to the library and got her new book, True You. I was shocked to find out that, all the time I was loving her throughout the years, Janet could barely look at herself in a mirror because she didn’t like what she saw. It wasn’t until recently that Miss Jackson came to love and accept her whole self. In True You, she traces her journey to happiness and self-awareness.
Janet was not only candid–she was even raw at times. Her humility reminded me that, just like all of us, she too has internal struggles. Her honesty is beautiful. She laid her heart on the line to speak to young girls and women everywhere who are fighting to find peace with their bodies, looks and overall self-esteem.
Thank you, Janet, for sharing your journey with us…
“I am loved, I’m valued, and I’m capable of achieving balance in my life…I can be happy with who I am, not what I should be, or what I might have been, or what someone tells me I must be…”–Janet Jackson, True You