The Importance of Icons

Growing up, I was obsessed with reading books. My grandparents would buy me something to read and I would read a book a day to the point where they told me they had to stop buying books because I was going through them way too fast.

I loved reading fantasy novels, because I loved being transported to other worlds. My favorite author was the German bestseller author Cornelia Funke. I have read every single one of her books - most of them several times. Her trilogy about the Ink-world is world-famous. The main character in the book is called Meggie. I was about her age when I was reading the book - 12 years old. I completely identified with her and even made my parents call me Meggie, because I thought she was so cool! I called my parents the names that Meggie’s parents had in the book (Mo and Resa), because Meggie did not say “Mom” or “Dad”, but just called them by their first names.

Of course, I also loved watching movies and my favorite movie was “The Incredibles”. Once again, I became so obsessed with the movie that my parents had to call me “Violetta” (that’s what Violet is called in the German version of the movie that I grew up with) and I called my brother Flash (the German version of “Dash”). Once again, I thought Violet was just such cool girl and I was looking up to her.

My godfather wanted to buy an action figure for at the Toys-R-Us in Times Square, but he went inside, he only found action figures of Bob and Dash - no figures of Violet. He was absolutely disappointed. He did not tell me this story until years after it happened.

I now realize how important it is to see yourself represented in the media. I had so many role models in the books, TV shows and movies that I watched growing up and it just shows why we need strong female characters!

I am beyond happy to have had all these amazing characters to help facilitate growing up - because we all know how difficult that is!