Watching Viola Davis on-screen is enough to prove how inspiring the actress is, but her real life story is just as moving.
In a new interview with People, Davis explained that her 4-year-old daughter Genesis always wants to be the princess in bedtime stories.
“She’ll say, ‘Make the princess me. Let it be me,'” Davis explained. “That’s what happens when you’re young. Then something happens where you realize, ‘They don’t see me that way.'”
But Davis says she never got to that point.
“I want to be in the story. I think I deserve to be in that story, and I believe my story deserves to be told.”
And rightly so.
Davis is not one of those actors who was born and bred within the industry. As a child, she was hungry. Her family struggled to put food on the table.
Her mother only completed eighth grade, while her father only had a fifth-grade education. The welfare check the family received was far from enough for the family of eight.
And that hunger ties in directly with Davis’ most recent quotes. “I was always so hungry and ashamed, I couldn’t tap into my potential,” Davis said in an interview with Us Weekly. “I couldn’t get at the business of being me.”
“I’m finally comfortable with my story,” Davis also revealed in the Us interview. “I finally understand what [mythologist] Joseph Campbell meant when he said: ‘The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.'”
And Davis imparts this ideology to her daughter.
“I tell my daughter every morning, ‘Now, what are the two most important parts of you? She says, ‘My head and my heart.’ Because that’s what I’ve learned in the foxhole: What gets you through life is strength of character and strength of spirit and love.”
If that’s not a fairy tale worth telling, we aren’t sure what is.