Written June 24, 2016(edited 2017)
“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder” and “Beauty is on the inside”.
When I first heard these statements I understood them right away, however, it wasn’t until recently that these words hit home. Personally, I’ve never thought of myself as beautiful. I don’t know why really. I’ve just never seen myself as some hot gorgeous woman or anything but I didn’t really consider myself ugly either. I’ve always seen myself as average. Heck, if I was given the opportunity to have cosmetic surgery or in some way change some part of me I might, I said MIGHT, change a thing or two.
Thru the years I’ve had a lot of experience in dealing with beauty. I’ve seen the ugly whether it was events, things and people and I’ve found the beauty in them. I’ve also seen the ugly in the beautiful. In high school I was someone who didn’t fit in the neat little package of prep or jock. I tried fitting in with the smart kids but found being smart didn’t feel good either so I hung out with the geeks, nerds, misfits, losers, scumbags, grits(what was used in my time) whatever you want to call them. You know who they are. Some of them are from poorer families or from homes that weren’t to terribly clean and neither were the people.
Then there were some who might be considered overweight and not so pretty. Those kids were much more than friends, they were like family. They taught me to see the beauty inside the ugly. This is something that would help later on in life because after I got out of high school I continued to make friends who I fondly call the “underdogs”.
I also learned to see the beauty in ugly situations. Mostly it was when a loved one passed away. I learned that sometimes it was a blessing because the person was sick and their quality of life was diminished. Most times I found that doing this was difficult. “You mean to tell me there’s a blessing in getting fired from a job or getting into a car accident?” I had a really hard time seeing any good in that kind of stuff aside from not being injured in an accident. It was just to hard sometimes. That is until recently…when ugly barged into my life.
People in my close circle know I’ve been dealing with a mysterious skin disorder that, when it’s finally healed, will leave noticeable scars on my face. When my skin had gotten worse, I isolated myself and went out only when it was absolutely necessary. The thought of going to Wal-Mart horrified me. I figured I would be looked at as some monster and that I should be wearing a mask like Phantom in “Phantom of the Opera”. Plus I’ve gained a bit of weight compared to the days when I was known to be a skinny little toothpick. To top it off the thoughts in my head about what others(family, friends, and strangers even) thought about me made it even worse. At one point I couldn’t even look at myself in the mirror.
It wasn’t until I finally told some of my friends about why I was isolating and how I felt that I started coming around. When I told them why I was hiding in my house, what I was thinking and how I felt, they emphatically reassured and reminded me of my beauty within. They also told me that I didn’t look nearly as bad as I thought I did. By the way, I forgot to mention that this circle of friends tends to get looked down on by society. Despite that they are overall the most caring and genuine people that I’ve met in my life.
It has taken a very long time for me to accept what I look like now compared to my high school days but it gets better each day. I admit, some days are harder than others. What also helped me was remembering something I did a few years ago.
I was having self esteem issues a number of years ago and this was the suggestion I was given then. I had gone to the mirror that I used daily with a pen, and a pad of sticky notes. On each piece of paper I wrote something positive and I stuck on the mirror. I did this with each piece of paper until the mirror was covered. Then each day I went to the mirror and took a note off. I repeated to myself what the note said all day. I continued to do this each day and each day I’d see a little more of myself. When all the notes were gone I could see myself I and I didn’t think so negative. I could see my beauty within.