I have had some time to reflect on the past few days. Wow. Just wow.
My post about being ridiculed on Reddit went viral. I was featured on The Daily Dot, News Limited, Mamamia, Yahoo, HLNTV (I did that phone interview at 5.45 am Friday morning)!, CNN Espanol, Fox and The Daily Mail, plus a few other international media outlets. Charlie Pickering mentioned me on The Project too - I was fangirling!! I met Charlie briefly when I was in The Project audience, and again at the Yooralla Media Awards last month. I love what The Project does to cover disability and diversity issues, and was chuffed to be mentioned.
The reach of these articles through social media shares and the support generated has been wonderful. People have told me that through me telling my story, they have become more confident in being proud about their own appearances.
These are the things I've learnt since Thursday:
It pays to stand up for yourself online. It helped me stay strong and have a voice, and it made people take notice.
The nasties only know me through a picture and a few hundred words I've written. If they're going to judge me on that alone, then they need to get out more.
Kind people outweigh the hateful people by 1 million. I've received thousands of wonderful messages from all over the world in many languages, and only five pieces of hate mail. (I haven't had a chance to reply to every email and tweet received yet, but I will try to soon. Thank you.)
Tall poppy syndrome exists. It's been best to get someone else to moderate my emails to avoid seeing messages telling me to kill myself for looking so ugly. My boy said he'll hack these comments so I don't have to.
That Daily Mail doesn't take no for an answer. They used my story, photos and video without permission. But, unexpectedly, the support generated from The Daily Mail has been amazing.
Educating people through heartfelt words is better than getting angry. So many more people now know about ichthyosis and think differently about judging people on their appearance alone.
Being 'Internet famous' is weird. I had over 80,000 hits in two days. Can I retreat for a while?
I feel like my ordinary self though. There's nothing glamourous about being Internet famous.
Nothing beats the love received from the people I love.
Thank you for all of your support. ♥
For those visiting my blog fresh from the media, visit these pages to see how I live with ichthyosis, resources, and that I live a great life:
What is ichthyosis?
Ichthyosis and appearance diversity resources
Ichthyosis awareness month 2013