Image Instagrammed by Celina. (Courtesy:Celina Jaitly)
Bollywood actress and former Miss India Celina Jaitley took a walk down memory lane on Instagram recently and reflected on her journey so far. The actress, sharing that it has been 22 years since she bagged the fourth runner-up title at the Miss Universe pageant, opened up about her health struggles and professional challenges along the way. In a detailed note, Celina Jaitley explained that while she began her journey as a model and won accolades for her work as a teenager, she was also regularly hospitalised due to issues such as "dysmenorrhea and blood loss". She also battled "severe acne and very severe endometriosis" at a time when she was subjected to body shaming by sections of the industry, the actress revealed. This was coupled with low pay and payment-related issues, Celina Jaitley said in her candid note.
Sharing a video of her walking on stage in a swimwear, followed by an image of her with fellow contestants, Celina Jaitley said in her note, “This year marks 22 years since I became a runner-up at the Miss Universe pageant held in SanJuan, Puerto Rico in 2001 right after India's great triple wins at Ms Universe, Ms World and Miss Asia Pacific the year before (Lara Bhupathi, Priyanka Chopra and Dia Mirza). Amongst 103 contestants at only 5 ft 6 inches ( I was one of the shortest contestants that year) yet I went on to become a runner-up, a moment of great pride for me, upholding my country's legacy.”
Speaking about her journey in the fashion world, Celina Jaitley shared that she was spotted at an “army party” as a teenager. Her journey was not without its struggles, she explained. “I entered the fashion industry at a very young age (15) after being scouted at an army party. The struggles that one went through in a new and upcoming fashion industry in a not-so-open-minded Kolkata was not easy, plus the pressure of studies and competitive exams made my entire teenage a journey of hard work and toil.”
Celina Jaitley also spoke about the health issues she battled during this period. “I also suffered from severe acne and very severe endometriosis and had to be hospitalised almost every month during my menstruation due to severe dysmenorrhea and blood loss so it was an incredibly intense life for a child who had many dreams and aspirations."
That's not all. She also explained that while the payment was meagre on several occasions, there were times she was not even paid. The lack of regulations within the industry did not help either, she said. "While others would enjoy weekends I would take up shoot and ramp show offers in Kolkata and work for meagre amounts of monies. Many a times I wouldn't even end up getting paid for my hard work and unauthorised use of images due to lack of industry regulations."
In the caption, Celina Jaitley also spoke about unrealistic beauty standards that she faced in the industry as a teenager. "Then there was the constant criticism and rejection either I was too white, too thin, not tall enough or too tall etc. For many years I had to hear many derogatory things about all the things that made me unique and go on despite that. For a child in her teens it was truly overwhelming hence the journey to the crown was a very intense one.”
“Crowns... after all are not made of sparkling stones, they are made of sheer determination, strength, dedication, devotion, struggle and immense courage too,” she said.
Take a look at the complete note here:
Sharing another throwback image a few days ago, Celina Jaitley said, “I was a 16-year-old girl when this photograph was taken. I started modelling at a very young age professionally. In my mind, I was still a child and didn't understand how people could find someone who still played in the park with friends ‘hot'.”
Take a look at the post here:
Celina Jaitley is best known for her work in films such as Apna Sapna Money Money, No Entry, and Golmaal Returns, among others.