Photography by Destinee Stark Photography
Meet Lexi. She is Beauty Revived.
Grace is defined as, “A simple elegance”. It’s synonymous with “poise,” and honestly, couldn’t more accurately describe Lexi than if she had been named Grace – which, she is by the way. Meet Lexi Grace. She is Beauty Revived.
Lexi wears many hats in her community and happens to be one of eight siblings in her family. Although her humble character prohibits her from boasting of her many academic achievements and leadership skills, I can’t help but to share them because her perseverance and character are truly inspiring. She is a member of The National Honors Society, ranks 23rd in her class, and has received many leadership and positivity awards throughout her high school career, as well as being nominated Homecoming Queen this year. She is very involved at her school and participates on the dance team, marching and concert band, student council, Fellowship of Christian Students, as well as the yearbook staff. She works part time at a local bridal shop, and in spite of her busy schedule, remains committed to serving others through community service projects, being a camp counselor for middle school students, being a mentor, and being involved in the special education buddy program.
Lexi has always strived to lead by example and make sure that her peers feel like they belong. She was once featured on the front page of several local newspapers for leading her class to elect two special education students as Winter Formal attendants. I once heard, “When you have all that you need, build a longer table, not a taller fence”, and it reminds me so much of how Lexi lives her life each and everyday. The words “inclusivity” and “high school” are rarely ever found in the same sentence, but Lexi has made it her personal mission to spread kindness and love throughout her school and community.
As I mentioned, Lexi is an advocate for acceptance, self-love, and inclusivity. She enjoys uplifting her peers through social media and positive reminders posted sporadically throughout her school. She’s passionate about mental health and bringing awareness to suicide prevention, which led her to the decision of having a semicolon tattooed on her wrist. A semicolon is used when an author could’ve ended their sentence, but chose not to. Through an organization called Project Semicolon, many have shared this exact same tattoo in solidarity to bring awareness to suicide prevention. Lexi got this tattoo as a reminder to not only herself, but to everyone that she meets, that we all have so much strength left within us and to keep fighting, because that’s what she did. She kept fighting.
Imagine waking up one day, just a month before your senior year of high school is set to begin, to look in the mirror to find that your face looks drastically different than it did the night before. This was Lexi’s reality, and she woke up, not able to move the entire left side of her face. Lexi had been diagnosed with Bell’s Palsy, a condition that causes facial paralysis. Although in most cases, symptoms are only temporary, the timing couldn’t have been any worse for a teen girl entering her senior year of high school. I remember what it was like being in high school, and I have a pretty good idea of how I would’ve handled a diagnosis such as this and it definitely wouldn’t have looked anything like the graceful, confident response that Lexi has had since her diagnosis. Lexi used this as an opportunity to more deeply explore self-love and share that journey with her peers.
She has been such an inspiration to so many people, although, Lexi admits that if it weren’t for the love and kindness her friends, family, classmates, and teachers showered her with, since her diagnosis, she would never have been able to remain as positive and hopeful as she did. I think that is a wonderful example of how kindness can make such a difference in someone’s life when they are struggling. Lexi says, “We are who we are because of our hearts and the joy we find in life, not because of the obstacles or challenges we might face.”
As for the future, Lexi has hopes and dreams of owning her own bridal shop and wedding planning business. She plans to attend college next year and study business. Through Lexi’s story of perseverance, she has been able to embrace her true beauty and share that light with others around her. Getting to know Lexi over the last year has been such a blessing, and she has truly become one of my biggest role models. I am so encouraged by her love for others, and I know that the passion she has will continue making a positive impact wherever life takes her.
About the Photographer
I am a nationally published portrait photographer in Akron, Ohio. I believe in empowering women and teen girls to be true to themselves and kind to their peers. I’m a follower of Jesus, a wife, and a dog-mom in my mid-twenties with big dreams. My favorite things include: grilled cheese, yoga pants, binge watching Netflix, and fresh florals.