We had the good fortune of connecting with Jareda “JLovely” Nance and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jareda “JLovely”, can you tell us more about your background and the role it’s played in shaping who you are today?
Well, hello there! My name is Jareda “JLovely” Nance and I’m from sunny Southern California (home of the fabulous and fit, image-fanatic). I grew up in an amazingly loving two parent home. My parents would encourage me to let my creativity run free. I always wanted to model in some way. I would play dress-up and put together costumes. I would write poems, plays and songs. I would sing and have elaborate performances in front of my sold-out audiences (in my mind lol). I was ALWAYS raised to believe that beyond the shadow of ANY doubt or unconstructive criticism, that I was intelligent, beautiful, talented and that MY VOICE MATTERED.
I was always larger than the average-sized girl. Despite being larger than my associates, my mother always kept me dressed in the most up-to-date styles. She basically stamped it in my mind from a young age to take pride in my appearance and to hold my head up no matter what.
Now (and even then), I was told that “I have a WALK ON ME”! That simply means that I have an impressive strut to my walk and that it exudes an air of confidence.
I never really had any issues with body image or self confidence coming up. It wasn’t until much later on that my self-esteem started to waiver. As I grew into young adulthood, the common pleasantries and compliments that I was so accustomed to turned into the occasional backhanded “compliment”. ” You’re so pretty for a big girl!””You would be so fine if you lose 50 or more pounds!””You really need to lose weight, but that pretty face really makes up for it!” Then there was my personal favorite,”I don’t date big women at all, but I’d date you!” (As if he was doing me some huge favor😡)
Seeing such a paradigm shift in how I was treated solely based on my size led me to being down on myself at times. I would wonder why it seemed that no one was seeing that beauty in me that I was told was undeniable. I have a great smile and an effervescent personality that people rave about. Why is that being dismissed? Was it because it’s in a larger package? I was dumbfounded, but I remembered the talks and life lessons my parents taught me. I regained that WALK that was (and still is) unforgettable. I refocused my energies towards ignoring the ignorance of others. I shook off the insecurities that were really reflections of the ugliness redirected from the people who spewed forth negativity. Simply put, I renewed and replenished my Queendom. (I’m currently in an awesome relationship with someone who saw the beauty in me from day one.) Now I just hope I can inspire someone with my story and let people know that truly believing in yourself unleashes such joy, confidence and positivity. Don’t let haters bring down your self-worth. Your name and your energy is floating around in rooms you’ve never been in and it’s because you radiate love, peace and abundance.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am so multifaceted. Lol I find it so difficult to “niche down” or put myself into a category. My professional title is Special Education Assistant. With that, I tutor and assist my students with their needs. That’s not all I do though. My interests cover such a wide scope. YouTube creator. Teacher. Poet. Cook. Motivational speaker. Plus Size model. These are just some of the titles that I hold. I really would consider myself a true Renaissance Woman. I am knowledgeable in such a wide range of fields.
When it comes to my hobbies, I love reading, cooking, creating YouTube videos, singing, taking pictures, dancing, traveling and the list goes on. I have such a diverse group of interests. All of these activities allow me to express my creativity through differing avenues. One topic I feel strongly about is self-love and self-body image. I truly believe in loving yourself and finding your internal beauty. Once you’ve attained that, you project it outwards! Confidence is all encompassing! Hopefully, I’ll soon be launching a T-shirt line featuring slogans of self-love and appreciation created by myself.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Some of my favorite spots to eat are Tempo Cantina, La Barca Mexican restaurant, El Cholo Mexican restaurant, (It’s pretty evident that Mexican food is in my top favorites. Lol)
The Family Soul Food on Figueroa is just right for when you want that Down Home flavor (the Smothered Steak plate with Green Beans and Mac and Cheese is my personal favorite!)
If you’re looking for a more upscale dining experience, try Mastros Steakhouse. Although pricey, they are TOTALLY WORTH IT! I went for my birthday and the steak I had was delectable! It melted in my mouth! Another upscale eatery is Spaghettini in Newport Beach. It boasts a really nice, romantic ambiance for dinner and live jazz.
There’s also Post and Beam. This is a Black-owned restaurant that serves Californian eats as well as soul food, pizzas and is known for their awesome brunch.
For a little bit of everything, I’d definitely recommend Anaheim Packing District Food Court. They have such an amazing array of food choices inside and there’s such a dope energy.
If you’re looking for inexpensive dives, Dino’s Chicken and Burgers is where you need to go! People come from miles around to try their expertly marinated chicken and those home-cut fries!
Thai Patio in Hollywood is great!
(Their Pad See Ewe is awesome! I fell in love with their Egg Rolls, Shrimp Cakes and their Tom Kha soup!) .
Some great places to visit would be the Rose Garden in Exposition Park, Catalina Island, the Griffith Park Observatory, and Leimert Park. I also love the Santa Monica Pier to ride the ferris wheel. (The very best time to do this is at sunset. The view is beautiful 🥰.) The 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica is also a fun area to sight-see, shop, eat and socialize.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’d like to dedicate my shout-out to my parents, family, best friend and boyfriend. They have been a CONTINUOUS system of SUPPORT, UNDERSTANDING and GENEROSITY. The level of love, appreciation and adoration I have for them is incomparable to any other I have known.
My mother is truly the epitome of everything a mother is supposed to be.
She goes above and beyond for everyone she loves and with such a selfless heart. My queen is in a class all her own. She is my EVERYTHING!!!❤️