Smiling woman with shoulder-length dark hair and bangs

Janet Weber

Janet Faye Weber was born on March 17, 1990, in Tupelo, Mississippi, to proud parents Horace and Bernice and sister, Julie, who was two years older. Horace was a gravedigger, and Bernice was a beautician. The Webers were immersed in the world of child pageants, and older sister Julie was a highly successful competitor.

Janet had some early success as a toddler competitor. By age five, the pressure not only to perform but also to surpass her sister's success had taken a psychological toll. Janet developed performance anxiety which manifested as waves of extreme nausea striking when she heard her name called to go on stage.

If Janet evacuated her stomach, she could compete, so she would hear her name, vomit, and step on stage. Unfortunately, she developed the reputation of being a pageant puker and was given the nickname "Chunks." Janet secretly began starving herself the day before a competition so her stomach would be empty. The anxiety became crippling.

When she was seven, Janet's parents finally pulled her from pageant life, but they continued to push Julie, who competed through to Miss Teen USA. Horace and Bernice never let Janet forget how disappointed they were.

Whenever Janet's parents were on the road with Julie, Janet would stay with her maternal grandparents, Dick and Roxie Wells. The Wellses adored Janet, were concerned about her well-being, and were only too happy to care for her as often as possible.

Throughout elementary school, Janet was an underachiever. She was intelligent but did not want to call attention to herself. Janet balked if she ever thought she might be in the spotlight, including when playing games at home. This did not escape Dick and Roxie's notice.

After Janet's 8th grade graduation, the Wellses took her on a road trip. They traveled up to Pennsylvania, then back down through Ohio, Kentucky, and Tennessee. When they returned home, the Wellses requested custody of Janet.

The Wellses scheduled weekly counseling sessions for Janet, which included cognitive behavioral therapy. Her grades improved, and she joined student government. By her junior year, Janet was acting in school plays without any stage fright, provided she was not cast as a lead character.

Janet studied Hospitality Management at Itawamba Community College. She had an active social life and dated frequently but was not in any type of long-term romantic relationship. Janet graduated in 2010 with an Associate of Applied Science degree.

That summer, she was hired as a night auditor at the Hampton Inn in Oxford. In 2016 she was promoted to Front Desk Manager. So far, she is content to stay in that position even though she is qualified to be promoted.

Janet lives alone in a modest two-bedroom apartment with two cats named Itsy-Bitsy and Meatball. To socialize, she began performing at a local community theatre. There, Janet met Board member Neal Caine and was smitten. Over time her feelings deepened, but so far are unrequited.

Janet remains very close to her grandparents who visit her about every six weeks or so.

 

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