Body & Soul

A girl who grew up in school uniforms, is a molecular bio and women studies nerd, and a self-proclaimed “sweatpants with a captial S” addict?! Never has a celebrity starlet sung more to my soul than Holland Roden!

And Seventeen Magazine thought so too when they asked her to be a featured writer for “The Body Peace Project”.

I remember the day I sat in the auto shop waiting for my car. In a room full of men, I never felt so empowered as a woman, and I even tore the article out of the magazine … I promise, guys, that’s about the most rebellious I’ve gotten, but I just couldn’t help myself! Everything she wrote spoke to me as a writer, a fangirl, and most importantly, a girl.

When Holland got to college was when she finally got a chance to cultivate a bit of a sense of fashion, just like I did after 13 years of wearing uniforms. But there was just one problem … she had no idea what hers was! So what else was there to do but to mirror her friends’ choices and copy the current trends of bandage skirts, heels, and the like?

Even when she felt uncomfortable on multiple levels, both in her own skin and especially under the gaze of guys’ eyes, she says it wasn’t until she got cast on Teen Wolf as Lydia, a character who was similarly decked out in asset-accentuating clothes, that Holland confirmed “overtly sexy wasn’t my style”.

“[It] led to an epiphany. I may not be able to change the costumes I wear for my job, but I can change what I wear after hours … I knew I had to try [and] find outfits that made me feel unstoppable.”

I think “epiphany” is the keyword here. We’ve all had moments where we’ve made the wrong decisions and weren’t quite sure how to change them. But that desire to change is the most important place to start. That sitting down, self evaluation of discovering how your decision led to the present moment, and then self questioning about the best route to take to change it! The results of acting upon that epiphany are bound to be worth more than all the gold, frankincense and myrrh in the world.

When she did this and asked herself what she found truly sexy, “skintight” was nowhere to be found in her list of synonyms or adjectives.

“For me, being sexy is about feeling comfortable enough to do something totally brave, like … spark a great conversation.”

Throughout the past 5 seasons of Teen Wolf, it’s been really awesome noticing how Holland’s desire for changing herself has translated onto the screen and into her character. Stilettos and short skirts have been traded for high low dresses, a statement jacket, or booties with a simple wedge (which probably is a lot more sensible given all the running away from monsters that happens!). And it even seems like not only have the writers and creators been taking direction from Holland, they have been inspired by Holland, so much so that Lydia is also a biology whiz! But the most beautiful part of Lydia’s story is that, while she was doing that thing that inevitably happens of high school of finding out who your friends are and aren’t, the friends that became her pack always saw the wisdom she had to offer the world, and encouraged her to own that spark she used to kept hidden.

Thank you Holland, for encouraging me to encounter my own epiphanies, let my sparks fly, and, through this blog and beyond, start great conversation.




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