Tessa Virtue reflects on being 'a girl with big dreams' in childhood throwback photo

Tessa Virtue is sharing a motivating throwback photo from her childhood. (Photo by George Pimentel/Getty Images)
Tessa Virtue is sharing a motivating throwback photo from her childhood. (Photo by George Pimentel/Getty Images)

Tessa Virtue is celebrating the International Day of the Girl Child with an inspirational throwback.

On Tuesday, the former Olympian shared an "adorable" childhood photo of herself smiling in front of a classroom blackboard, paired with a motivational message for girls and women reminding them to "fearlessly" chase their dreams.

"I look at this photo and see a girl with big dreams and the privilege of opportunity," the 33-year-old ice dancer penned to her more than 430,000 followers. "I had the freedom to so fearlessly chase my goals. Makes me feel overwhelmed with gratitude."

"On this #InternationalDayoftheGirl, I want to take time to appreciate, celebrate and embolden girls and women everywhere. The world needs your voices, your views, your passion, your grit, your empathy, your creativity and your strength — now more than ever," she concluded.

Virtue's inspiring note garnered praise from her fans.

"Thank you for showing up for the girls who needed to hear this today! We are capable of anything and everything," one Instagram user commented on the post.

"So adorable!" another wrote. "You truly have achieved so much, and even more, great things are to come! Thanks for always inspiring others to set and achieve goals!"

"Thank you for being an inspiration to the next generation of girls," another added.

"What if lil' Tess knew that she would inspire so many young girls? She would be so proud!" one person chimed in.

Another commenter penned, "So proud of everything you achieved. Thank you so much for being such an inspiration for me and so many others."

Earlier this week, fans applauded Virtue for sharing another inspirational post on Instagram. She shared an empowering video about prioritizing her mental health, in spite of receiving "negative" criticism on a regular basis as a professional athlete.

"#WorldMentalHealthDay highlights the importance of prioritizing mental health, taking a step back from the hustle and opening up the conversation," she captioned the clip of herself exercising in a pair of black and white leggings, paired with a sleeveless white top as well as black and white sneakers.

"There are always people who see you, accept you and value you. Don’t ever forget that," the London, Ont. native shared.

Virtue explained in the video that growing up in a "competitive sport" meant being constantly subject to criticism.

"And not always just constructive, but sometimes simply negative," she recalled. "I had an amazing inner circle of people that I could be vulnerable with, people I could share with, people I could open up to...it was in working with those experts that I found my agency."

Virtue discovered that by changing the "narrative" in her mind, she was reclaiming her "power."

"The moment I gave it to someone else, I lost myself, I lost my values," she said. "When I started to not only practice failure but embracing it as part of my preparation or competitive advantage, and when I started using my voice to find agency within my own training, that's when the real sustainable success came in."

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