As a little girl, my parents told me how beautiful I was; I believed them then as much as I do now, but when I entered the “real world” I was met with some very hard truths that would temporarily render those words of love and validation from my loved ones empty and void.
From childhood to my young adult years, I was told how imperfect I was by society’s standards. I didn’t have perfect teeth, but my smile was warm, friendly and inviting. My hair wasn’t bone straight and jet black; its kinky and sandy brown but no one thought it beautiful. My dark brown skin, although smooth and flawless often received remarks like, “You’re cute to be dark-skinned!” – what the hell does that mean? I wouldn’t be attractive with my features if I was anything else? Everything and everybody suggested I should be super model thin and statuesque, how is that possible when I’m 5’4” and hereditary dictated I would not have an hour glass figure or wear a size 2 for my entire lifetime.
But then I woke up…
Who was I trying to please and why did what they thought of me or how I was “supposed” to be matter at all? My “flaws” are what makes me, well, ME! Yes, I am not perfect nor do I seek to be. I don’t have to fit into someone else image of who I should be but be the most wonderfully, beautiful imperfect me I can be. I am flawed from head-to-toe; I choose not to seek hands of a plastic surgeon – that’s for those people who want to fit the imagery of what has been deemed beautiful in the world’s eyes. I love being my flawed self, I just didn’t appreciate my “defects” when I was younger – now I flaunt them, enhance them, embellish them, accent them, speak about them with reverence and salute them every chance I get.
You see, no matter what anyone else thinks about me and how I look – it’s important to ME how I feel about me inside and out. My inner me never lost its shine through all the pain of trying to learn how to love the outer me. It was a journey I had to take to get to the place where I learned to realize the power of the words and the love my parents showered on me when I was a child. I had to walk a path of enlightenment to discover the truth in those words my mom would whisper in my eye when she saw tears well up in my eyes when I would come home crying from being taunted as a child. I began to hold onto all the hugs and shoulder rubs by my dad when he saw me depressed about being flawed and imperfect.
When I came to the realization, the truth about being a perfectly crafted masterpiece designed to be ME…then I also accepted I really don’t have any flaws; I am who I am and will be who I will be – flawed and imperfect but beautifully and wonderfully me!
I Want to Know:
- Have you ever let your flaws get in the way of truly loving yourself?
- Have people ever called you negative or derogatory names? How did it make you feel?
- At what point in your life, did you stop allowing what others say about you define who you were?