We are thrilled to share the next two episodes of our special new season of The What's Underneath Project. This week we’re featuring model and activist Lauren Wasser and YouTuber and journalist Gaby Dunn.
Lost in a superficial world of ‘cool girls,’ model Lauren Wasser abruptly went from getting into every club to fighting for her life due to Toxic Shock Syndrome. Her painful, intensive struggle to cope with her amputated leg left her feeling robbed of her freedom and independence. But Lauren says, “As much as I wanted kill myself and end the misery, knowing that my little brother would come home and be the one to find me — I didn’t want him living with that. I realized that I had a purpose.” With a herculean strength that will make you feel as if you can surmount anything, she left behind the mindset that good looks equal value and became unafraid to pursue a life rich in a purpose outside of herself. The take-no-shit model is championing the fight to teach women about the risks of TSS. “I wake up and I wish I could go outside and fucking run a marathon. I can’t think about what I had. I’m moving forward. I don’t think I would trade my experiences. My heart wouldn’t be full and I wouldn’t feel like I’m doing good.”
As for YouTuber Gaby Dunn, the pressure to be successful at a young age had her pushing herself to work around the clock. Growing up with an alcoholic parent and shouldering responsibility for her younger sister, accomplishments in school and work became a proxy for feeling accepted. “I had my first article in the Times Magazine when I was twenty-three, and I was obsessed with that. I’d just walk around and be like, ‘I’m only twenty-three and I wrote for the Times.’ I don’t even remember what it was about,” she admits. No longer chasing empty markers of achievement, Gaby is embracing the winding journey of her life, including her partnership with bestie Just Between Us co-star Allison Raskin, and an open relationship with her boyfriend (and no, she won’t just ‘be monogamous’ whenever she’s married).
These episodes are part of a special new season of The What’s Underneath Project airing exclusively on Fullscreen, whose support brought them into existence. We’re releasing two transcendent episodes a week every Monday through October 10, and we are ecstatic to share them with you. All eight episodes will be available for free when you sign up for for a month-long free trial.