“Meet, Ariana, she is a 14-year-old girl from the small town of Tahoka, TX. I learned about Ariana after I mentioned to my hair stylist that I would like to find a deserving young lady to photograph for Project Compassion. I contacted Ariana’s mother Becca, to get to know a little more about her story. Becca explained to me that Ariana has been a target of bullying for the past three years because of her looks. While we may see a polite and timid young lady with unique features, bullies use that all against her to bring her down.
To make matters worse, Ariana was recently diagnosed with ADHD, making life in school more difficult. But through all the challenges, Becca has worked very hard to learn about Ariana’s ADHD, and to encourage her to get involved in extra-curricular activities to help boost her confidence.
After I sent my nomination to Bentley & Lace, I sent Becca a photo of the Hope gown. She was thrilled! Becca told me Ariana was really excited to be able to do this. She’d never worn a gown like this before.
On the day of Ariana’s shoot, I was so excited to get going, I went to my hair stylist’s home 2 hours before our session. My stylist Adrianna Garcia, had offered to do hair and make-up for us. When I got there, Ariana had just started the hair and make-up process. I sat to chat for a moment with Becca. Tearfully, she told me about how happy she was that I was doing this for her daughter. It’s been a rough ride and giving Ariana this chance to feel like a princess was a big deal.