I’m going to say something right now that might get a few raised eyebrows from all of you, but I want you to know that I’m not just saying it out of vanity or self-absorption. And what I am going to say is this: I am beautiful.
Now, before you start laughing or shaking your head at me, let me explain why I said that. See, a friend sent me a blog post she’d read titled “The disease called ‘Perfection’“, and it got me thinking. I’ve mentioned a lot of my imperfections on this blog, sometimes out of self-deprecation, sometimes out of frustration, sometimes in jest, sometimes not even thinking about what my mention might mean to someone else… and I get a lot of you empathizing with me and bemoaning your own imperfections. Whether it be that you want to lose weight too, you have blemished skin, you’re emotional, you have a bad temper; whatever the case, it’s usually something you hate about yourself, and it’s usually something that brings you down.
And I want you to stop. Stop right now, look at yourself, and list every imperfection you can think about yourself.
Once you’ve done that, re-read that list. For every thing about yourself that is imperfect, list a quality about yourself that is uplifting and good. Something that you like about yourself, or that other people like about you.
Because I’ve realized lately that there aren’t enough people in this world who think positively. There are too many women, men, boys, and girls out there who see themselves in a warped and debilitating way. There are too many self-harming teens, who resort to cutting, bad eating habits, drugs, drinking, sex, or anything else they can find to get away from the fact that they aren’t perfect. There are too many people trying to cover up their pain with artificial things, and I’m tired of it. I’ve had too many friends thrown into the depths of depression– friends I love dearly who have considered suicide or committed self-harm– and I don’t want someone else I know to feel alone in this world.
I want you to see your beauty. I want you to realize that you are not ruled by imperfections, that beauty is not in the eye of the beholder… but that beauty is what you make it to be. Beauty is what comes from within you, and what shines through your skin. Beauty is letting yourself be seen. Beauty is taking off the mask of attempted perfection and letting people know who you really are.
And I want you to know who I really am. I want you to know my flaws, and I want you to know my strengths. I want you to know that I am human just like you. I’m not some grand adventurer, I’m not some important person, I’m not well-known. I’m just a girl sitting on her bed writing this blog in hopes that someone will see it and realize their worth.
Some of the things in my list are viewed as flaws only by the world, and some of these things are viewed as flaws only by me. Either way, I hope that you read my list and are encouraged to find the beauty in your list of imperfections.
- I am heavier than most of my friends and always have been… but I have a woman’s body, and my curves are beautiful.
- I am incredibly emotional and cry over almost everything… but I am compassionate and have the ability to sympathize where others cannot.
- I am sometimes immature and laugh at inappropriate times… but I can point out the beauty of the rain when others find themselves oppressed by the storm.
- I have a lot of dental problems… but my smile still has the ability to brighten someone’s day.
- I have been passed over for another girl, my heart has been broken, and I have never dated… but I have the confidence to be single, and know that romantic love is far surpassed by the love of my family and the love of my God.
- I am nearsighted and must wear glasses… but I have beautiful eyes, and glasses draw attention to that.
- I have a round face, small lips, and could never be a model… but my looks are unique, and I stand out from a crowd.
- I have a bad temper… but I am firm in what I believe, and do not sway from my standpoint.
- I am sometimes lazy in my duties around the house… but I have learned the joy in taking my time when others might worry and rush.
- I am allergic to many, many things… but I am sensitive to the pain of others.
- I have a hard time proving my point in speech… but I can see both sides of the argument and have always been a good mediator.
- I have very few experiences in the world… but I learn from what others do, and have more wisdom than most people my age.
- I am sheltered and sometimes ignorant of the world’s ways… but I have innocence, and can be a good influence on others.
- I am selfish and sinful at heart… but I have a God whose Son died for me, who has forgiven me, and whose beauty has transformed my life.
- I am a Jesus Freak*… but I can follow the example of my Savior to see people for who they are, and love them no matter what.
- I have my head in the clouds at times… but I can see hope in the future when others doubt it.
- I have cellulite, stretch marks, and fat… but I have triumphed over addictions to sugar and junk food, and can encourage others to do the same.
- I am poor… but I have learned to be wise with my money.
I am flawed. I am human. I make mistakes, I get mad, I say things I don’t mean. But for every flaw, there is a good thing about me that passes joy to others. And I know that I don’t talk about it much on my blog out of consideration for those of you who disagree with my beliefs, but I have to tell you that if I did not have the influence of God on my life– if my parents had not raised me to love Jesus– I would not have any of those good qualities.
It sounds religious and silly to some of you, I am sure. And that’s okay. You can disagree with me, and I will respect you for that. I won’t think less of you, I won’t get angry, I won’t try to argue and say that my way is right. You are your own person. What you believe or don’t believe isn’t up to me to judge, it’s up to God. I’m not here to point out the heathens. 😉
I’m here to see the beauty in you, to love you for you, and to hope that I can encourage someone with something I have said. I’m here to prove that staying true to my faith does not mean looking down on everyone and causing anger. I’m here to show you that being human and being imperfect doesn’t mean you’re ugly and unsalveagable.
I hope that something I said has caused you to see your own beauty and worth if you are depressed. I hope that you pass this on to someone who needs it. If this post makes a difference in one person’s life, I will be happy.
I want you to know that I love you, whoever you are. You’re flawed, you’re human, you’re weird, and you’ve got some really odd quirks. But I wouldn’t have you any other way, because you are you, and you are beautiful to me. Don’t ever stop being you.
Shirt, $3; Skirt, $5; Earrings, $3; Belt, $0.99; Shoes… unknown.
Approximate outfit cost: $20 (allowing for the shoes.)