Kim Chi gave advice to her younger self, and the moment became emotional.
In an exclusive clip of Monday night’s episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race, the Chicago-based performer looked at a portrait of herself as a 3-year-old boy and delivered a message: “Life will get better.”
“When you grow up, you’re going to experience a lot of different cultures,” said Chi, whose birth name is Sang-Young Shin. “People might shame you for being too different and not fitting in with the rest of the culture.”
“At times, you’re gonna feel like you’re trapped in a wrong body,” Chi continued through tears. “And you’re trapped in a place where you feel like you can’t get out. And at times, you’re gonna want to think about harming yourself or even running away. But I just want to let you know that it will all get better.”
This season, Chi has discussed how she is not out as a drag performer to her mother. Channeling her in a previous episode, Chi wore a hanbok, a traditional Korean dress, in a solemn runway look that won the “Book Ball” challenge.
“Once you grow up, the things that you are ashamed of are going to be the traits that people love you for. And you’re going to be able to embrace them,” Chi concluded. “You’re going to find a group of friends who’s gonna love you. You’re not going to feel lonely anymore. And what you thought was all just a dream will come true for you, because life will get better.”
The judges, RuPaul included, appeared moved by Chi’s response.“Kim Chi, you didn’t just get better. You got fierce,” RuPaul said.
Chi, who has been chided throughout the season for a lack of physical grace, ended her advice with a moment of levity.
“Oh, and go to dancing class as soon as possible,” Chi added. “Because you’ll really regret it if you don’t.”
Watch the clip below. And don’t miss the full episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race on Logo at 9 p.m. Eastern.