Strutting Through Life in the Face of Adversity

Published: Oct. 30, 2023 at 8:33 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - There are times when pain can grind life to a standstill, but for Lolita Frazier, standing still is simply not an option.

“So you’re either going to walk in it, allow it to make you bitter; or you’re going to strut through it and allow it to make you better. And that’s just what I’ve chosen, I want to be better.” says Frazier.

Lolita grew up with a single mother and was the oldest of three siblings in Williamsburg Virginia

From an early age, she sought out the stage, as her interest in modeling first began.

“I was just a young girl, who probably like many young girls, who had hopes and dreams of being in the limelight.”

And without any prior experience or resources, she tried her hand at her very first local fashion show competition.

All she brought with her was confidence in herself.

“It was the first time I actually bet on myself. Even if they’re taller, even if they’re prettier than me. I have something in me, I have something about me that’s different and I’m just going to turn it on. And I literally competed against 25 models, and I won.”

This victory was a turning point in her life, because from early childhood, it’s been an uphill battle.

She came from a low-income family, having to live with an abusive stepfather, and needed to play “mom” to her younger siblings.

She constantly felt on the outside.

Her only way out was the runway.

“That is what I want to show people, that when you look at me, you’re going to see confidence, you’re going to see authority, you’re going to a see a woman who knows exactly where she’s going… even if I’m lost!”

By the age of 21, Lolita was a mom of three children, who became her entire world.

There’s her two daughters, Whitney and Logan, and her youngest and only son, Jordan.

After not having a true father figure in life, she’d dreamed of the kind of son she’d have.

“If I could have a son, I’m going to make sure my son is the best man. He’s going to be honest; he’s going to be a protector, he’s going to be handsome, he’s going to be all of these things. And he was, he was just that.”

In 2016, Lolita was at the top of her game, with a successful career, a loving family, and so much opportunity.

She’d created a life for herself that showed little resemblance to her painful past, but pain still found its way into her path.

“I come back to South Carolina only to get a phone call two weeks later that somebody killed my son.”

When her son left for a trip to Virginia, it began as mother’s intuition, a feeling she couldn’t shake.

“And I said, “Because I need you to come back.” I said those words to him. He said, “I’m coming back.” And I never saw him again. I never ever saw him again.”

Her son was gone and her world stopped.

But it was in this darkness that she realized she had a choice; to stop or strut for her son.

“It was like he passed me a baton and I’m just finishing this.”

For Lolita, finishing for Jordan, meant a new beginning.

She moved forward in the best way she knew how.

Lolita founded “Strut Talk Runway Therapy”, where she coaches not only models, but anyone who’s survived trauma.

From breast cancer survivors to victims of assault, she shows them the importance of walking with purpose, putting your best foot forward.

“Get in position and you can strut right through it. So, STRUT: Standing Tall Revealing your Unadulterated Truth.” A motto that Frazier lives by.

She says by standing tall and presenting confidence, you can face any hardship that may come your way.

“We all have gone through something in life and we all will go through something in life. Everything that you need to get through, to get to the other side of that pain, is already inside of you.”

Getting past the pain and standing tall on the other side.

It all shows up in your strut.

“I wanted everyone to know that when you see me, my strut is telling my story of what I’ve overcome.”

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