Here To Serve
When you meet Caitlin Tyson, you can feel her inspiring energy. She’s a classically trained actress, a certified yoga instructor, a model, a writer, and Miss Cayman Islands 2018. This Caribbean-American woman embraces the beauty of both of her cultures. She also jump-started the natural hair movement in the Cayman Islands and encourages men and women to celebrate the skin that they’re in.
Growing up, Caitlin looked to national title holders of pageants as though they were royalty. “They’re really inspiring and so I always wanted to run,” she says. “But then once I went away to New York for training, my focus was just on acting.”
That fast-paced Big Apple lifestyle started to wear on her. It became exhausting and she missed home. She soon decided to return to the Cayman Islands.
Caitlin also wanted the opportunity to give back to her community. “Part of my life is service,” she explains. “I come from a single parent family. My mom is a social worker, and I’ve always seen her giving back. And I was like, how can I do something to give back?”
As an advocate for self-love she thought, “no one should feel that how they are naturally, isn’t beautiful and isn’t valid. So how can I bridge that gap?”
Caitlin decided to teach an after-school program at her local YMCA that focused on arts-based learning for kids. “We did a beautiful tribute from The Color Purple musical. We were embracing all the parts of our culture that make us amazing and rich and beautiful.”
Yoga as a Metaphor for Life
She’s continued to focus on serving while trying to find balance in her own life.
Yoga has played a big part in that balance. “I’m a certified yoga instructor,” she notes. “On our side of the world, we get into the glamour of yoga, which is like the outfits and the gorgeous poses and the leg behind my head. But when it comes up while you’re practicing, and thinking of everything as a metaphor for your life while you’re on the mat.”
She says yoga has helped her think about how she can be more flexible in thinking about the different areas of her life.
“I meditate,” says Caitlin. “One of my mantras is ‘I love myself enough to take care of myself, my body and soul.’ So that goes with everything: getting enough sleep, drinking enough water, eating well. You know you can make a choice to have some ice cream or a brownie every now and then like it’s no big deal, right?”