Today we’d like to introduce you to Michaela Knight.
Hi Michaela, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
My name is Michaela Knight, and I am 25 years old. I was born in Alton, IL but was raised in a small rural town in Bowling Green, MO. Growing up in a predominantly white area and being the child of an African American father and a Belizean mother was a challenge for me. Growing up, I remember being incredibly shy. I loved having my nose in a book, being outside in nature, going to church, or dreaming of being Snow White as I would play with any animal that would come my way (my parents probably got tired of me giving them unwanted pets at their doorstep, haha). As a child, I remember being terrified to speak to anyone. Because I always felt so different than the people around me. While I was shy, I loved to use my style and fashion to show my authentic personality. In ways, I couldn’t find a voice for myself; fashion was my voice. Fashion was an art to me growing up, and I have tried my best to incorporate pieces of “Mic” in pieces I wear today.
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall, and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I am a “light-skinned” girl- as I’ve been called my whole life, so I felt my race was often brushed aside. As I mentioned before, I grew up in a predominately white area in a mixed family. I grew up with friends who openly had racist families and would tell me that their families liked me because I wasn’t “really a black girl” or because I didn’t look or act as they assumed a “typical black girl” would. I was often told I had gorgeous hair for a “black girl.” These statements did harmful damage to a little girl who already felt misplaced in a big world.
Growing up, I remember wanting to change everything about myself. No one in my school looked anything like me. No one had curly like me- so I would straighten my hair every day to feel pretty and “normal” like the other girls in my school. I struggled, and still do struggle often with my body image. I have many imperfections- including my smile- which I hate but am learning to love thanks to J. Cole and his “Crooked Smile” song :). I was a people pleaser and had a hard time saying no because saying no felt like I was a mean girl. My lack of boundaries in childhood was based all on fear. Even though I had many friends growing up, I never felt seen, heard, or accepted by the people around me. I have struggled with my mental health for as long as I can remember. I spent most of my adolescence and young adult life in and out of toxic relationships and friendships. I never truly understood who “Michaela” really was until around a year ago when I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder and went to a residential to heal codependency and childhood trauma. This diagnosis wasn’t the “cure” I needed to get better, but it has helped me grow in ways I didn’t know was possible. The days are still hard-but, I finally have all the tools, knowledge, and acceptance to be who God created me to be. Authentically me.
As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar, what can you tell them about what you do?
I come from a lineage of family healers who have devoted their lives and careers to help heal as many wounded (mentally and physically) souls on this earth as we can. Growing up and never feeling like people knew who I was, I wanted to ensure that my career would help me help others feel safe to be authentically themselves. I graduated with my Bachelor’s Degree in psychology in May of 2020, being the first daughter in the family to graduate from college. After college, I worked as a case manager near my hometown for around a year before I took a leap of faith and started doing companion work. Many people have not heard of companioning services, but I feel companioning helps build rapport and help bridge the gap between the client and their clinical team. In my opinion, companionship is a safe space for the client when they are in and out of treatment.
Are books, apps, podcasts, or blogs that help you do your best?
I love books. I have a big imagination (maybe because I’m a Pisces, haha), so I love getting lost in a story-but. I prefer non-fiction. I also love poetry books (typically the ones that rip your heart out and include many boxes of Kleenex after the read, haha). One of my favorite poets is Edgar Allan Poe, and my favorite poem by him is “Annabelle Lee.” One of my favorite authors is Don Miguel Ruiz, and my favorite book is also “The Mastery of Love.” His books are all about self-growth, self-love, and self-improvement. I would highly recommend any of his books!
- Instagram: https://instagram.com/michaela_knight32?r=nametag
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/michaela.knight.54
- Twitter: http://twitter.com/Michaela_Knight10