You know her from MTV’s The Real World: Portland. But there is so much more to discover and learn about Jessica McCain. Kindhearted and determined, Jessica McCain is a strong woman—and she lives her life with purpose, which in turn, enables her to achieve anything she sets her mind to.
Justin Marroquin: When you were cast in MTV’s Real World Portland, what was your reaction?
Jessica McCain: When I found out I was cast to be on The Real World, I couldn’t believe it! I was like me? Of all people, me? They thought I was special and stood out. It was an amazing, yet scary feeling.
Justin Marroquin: What was it like to go from being cast on the show, and suddenly everybody knows who you are?
Jessica McCain: I don’t really think much has changed for me. In fact, most times I kind of forget that it was a part of my life until people bring it up, or a memory is sparked.
Justin Marroquin: You went through an incredible body transformation. How did you manage to do it?
Jessica McCain: Well most people don’t know this, but I was small before Real World, I weighed about 128 lbs. Then after a breakup, I went on to film and I packed on some pounds. Afterwards, I learned I needed to not stress about my body, but learn to love it. That was my first step in changing my body to what I wanted it to be. Next, I started learning to become a personal trainer, and how to work out and eat healthy. So by manipulating my diet mostly and lifting weights, I was able to form my body into a new healthier, faster, and stronger me!
Justin Marroquin: In today’s world, criticism and negativity are widespread not only in person, but on social media as well. How do you deal with it?
Jessica McCain: At first the ridicule was tough. You start to ask yourself, “am I really like what they say?” and the truth is, “No!” sometimes people just say mean things to get your attention, because they want to be where you are, or they’re not okay with themselves, so they have to point out your flaws. I handle it by being nice to them—sometimes it’s hard and I have to check myself to make sure I can be genuine, and speak with a pure heart, but God and I work it out. Ultimately, it feels better to “love people more” as my mom would say than to lash out at them.
Justin Marroquin: You have strong beliefs and values. Where does that come from, and how do you maintain being that way?
Jessica McCain: I gained my morals and beliefs from my upbringing, I was in church since birth, and have been all my life. However, just because it’s what I was taught growing up, I got the chance to see what I believed as an individual—free from the influence of my parents, church, and community on The Real World, and it served me well. In my times of desperation, I called out to God and he was there to guide me, always been, always will be no matter what I do, I find great comfort in that.
It’s hard to maintain faith and perseverance in this world, especially when hard times fall upon us—and contrary to what most believe, my life hasn’t always been a cake walk, and my family isn’t free from hardship and heartache. With that being said, I know that it is God who has helped us stick together to get through our darkest moments, and keep the faith.
Justin Marroquin: What has been your favorite memory in your life so far?
Jessica McCain: Oh, this is such a hard thing to answer because I could name so many! I think one of my most favorite moments was getting the call that I was to be on The Real World, and being able to share that with my 90 year-old Aunt Edith June, she’s so alive and up to date with the times that she was able to be genuinely happy, and excited with me.
Justin Marroquin: Is there anything specific that you would like to achieve in 2014?
Jessica McCain: I really want to focus on acting and songwriting after getting my personal training license. Those are three things that I am very passionate about, and mean a lot to me when thinking about building my future.
Justin Marroquin: You’re also a very down to earth person. With being on national television, how do you stay so grounded?
Jessica McCain: I stay grounded because even though I was naive, and had a tough time in the TV world, I knew who I was, what I believed, and what was important to me. I’m not a chameleon, I’ll never change for anyone, and I take pride in that. My family says I’m the rebel, and I march to the beat of my own drum—no matter how weird it makes me look. It’s a very grounding feeling to know who you are, and where you come from.
Justin Marroquin: What can people learn from you?
Jessica McCain: Learn from me? Oh geez, I don’t know! People tell me that I inspire them and teach them things on the daily, and it’s very uplifting to know that just by living and growing, people can learn from you. I’m an arsenal of random information and quite the nerd, so I suppose if you talked to me long enough, you would know everything from conspiracy theory to the macro breakdown of your diet.
Justin Marroquin: How do you want to be remembered?
Jessica McCain: I want to be remembered as the fun-loving girl who loves to see people smile, make them laugh, and shows compassion for any and everyone no matter the situation. And also the sweet and sassy southern belle that I am.
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