My JEM Journey into Fabulous
by Monica Garcia Saenz
A few years ago I found myself unhappy and in need of spiritual healing so I decided to explore Self Love as a way to find inner peace, healing and joy. Not long after, I met Ylondra Marrero when she hired me to do the marketing for her up and coming business. Little did I know at the time that she and JEM Fab Fashions would have such a powerful and positive impact on my life. I’m very passionate about helping my clients find the next level of success but wasn’t expecting this client to help propel me into a new level in my Self Love journey. One of the first things I do when I start working with a client is find out as much as possible about their business, mission, vision, purpose, strategy etc… I was both excited and inspired, not to mention surprised that a clothing line could also be about empowering and uplifting women while helping them feel beautiful and fabulous at the same time. I immediately felt a powerful spiritual connection to Ylondra when she told me her goal was to help women embrace self love. In that moment I felt our meeting was definitely Divine in nature.
Our friendship came naturally as we began designing, developing and planning for the launch of the JEM line in March of 2019. I loved the idea that she wanted to be inclusive to women of all shapes, sizes, ages, flavors, colors and styles. Her focus was clear in that she wanted all women to feel and look beautiful with her fashion ideas and designs. What I didn’t imagine was that she would ask me to be one of her Curvy and Beautiful Models for both the website and the Fashion Show / Grand Opening Gala. Here I was approaching 50 and yes loving myself but not quite feeling self confident enough to get in front of a camera or strut my stuff on the runway. It just wasn’t in the realm of what I thought was possible.
My initial reaction was to first ask her if she was serious and then proceed with all the reasons why I wasn’t a good fit or why I couldn’t be a model at my size or my age. The more we talked, shared and interacted, the more she spoke love, light, beauty and empowerment into my mind, my body and finally my soul. I can’t begin to tell you how healing it is to have a young beautiful woman like her speak to me with such power and authenticity looking past my flaws and only highlighting all the good she saw in me. She took an eraser and rubbed away all the fear and self doubt I was carrying around for years. And then she carefully placed my lost crown on my head and led me to the mirror so I could see the beautiful and amazing women she saw in me.
When I finally got to the point of trying on her clothes I was filled with hope, courage and self confidence. To be in a room full of young, thin, beautiful young ladies and feel just as included and beautiful is empowering and uplifting to the say the least. Her clothes are specifically selected and designed to accentuate a woman’s body and highlight her curves and beauty while diminishing any flaws or imperfections. The fashion show was both exhilarating and inspiring as I felt honored to be a part of such a powerful and positive movement for all women of all walks of life to just begin loving themselves as they are now while they work towards becoming the best version of themselves as possible while looking amazing in the process.
And she didn’t stop there, she pushed me to follow my dreams and overcome my fears and begin sharing my poetry at a few local community artist events put on by GCL- Guft Coast Leisure right here in #SWFL. She didn’t take no for an answer on finding my courage to read my poetry in public any more than she allowed me to say no to being her JEM model. She also has been a catalyst in the development of my upcoming book on Self Love. I had been carrying around this dream of not only embracing self love for myself but inspiring other women to do the same through my writings and once again she spoke empowerment and love into me and pushed me to take action and just get started. Thanks to her and a fabulous group of ladies who meet with us every month I am currently working on the final chapters of the book. Sometimes all it takes is ONE person to believe in us and push us to follow our dreams with strength and determination for us to take the necessary steps to make that dream come true.
By the time we got to the photo shoot you see here in Downtown Fort Myers in front of The Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center I was a totally different woman. I will be forever grateful to my beautiful friend and soul sister Ylondra Marrero for trusting me, believing in me and helping me learn to not only love and accept myself as I am but to rock my swag and embrace my fabulous wherever I go. I have a few more JEM Fab Fashions amazing outfits to share with you so stay tuned for future photo shoots. That’s right I’m loving the camera and myself these days thanks to Ylondra and JEM Fab Fasions!
Dear Monica, I cannot thank God enough for placing someone like you into my life. Through thick and thin, loyalty is what keeps our friendship going. Like a sister, you have demonstrated what it means to feel loved. Like a warrior, your strength is measured by the size of your heart. Thanks for reaching your hand out, pulling me up off the ground to say “you got this.” I love how silence can sometimes bring us closer than words ever could. You are a huge inspiration in my life. Thank you for every laugh that we have shared and supporting me with JEM and through every difficult time. Sometimes life gets bumpy, but it is comforting to know that I have you to fall back on when in need. You are my soul sista ?
Photography by: Jordan Flash Brown
MGS Designz can help you take your marketing to the next level with everything from a start up logo design and matching stationary to a full website. We can help you with blogging, email marketing, Search Engine Optimization and Social Media Marketing. We take the ordinary out of marketing with Extraordinary, Creative and Fresh ideas and designs. Contact Monica today for your free 1 hour marketing consultation. 239-282-2869