Have you seen the challenge in Facebook which urges women to post pics which make them feel beautiful? I’d successfully avoided said challenge until late last week. Then, I had to seriously look at it.
I’m not beautiful. It’s no secret. I’m not even pretty. I’m on the pretty side of plain… until you add the extra hundred pounds on my frame and then I’m someone who most men wouldn’t date.
I used to be cute. In high school, I was head cheerleader. I once had a guy say that I’d be the hottest thing at school, had it not been for my long butt (at the time I didn’t understand what he meant, but I do now). After I quit cheerleading, I gained 30 pounds. Since I’m relatively tall, the 30 pounds made me look plump, but not obese. I was okay with the extra weight. My soon-to-be husband was okay with the roundish look, too.
And then I became pregnant. I took “eating for two” literally and I gained the other 70 pounds to complete my morbidly obese state. My then-husband told me how completely unattractive I was at that point. After hearing this for years, I believed him. I mean, if the one man who is supposed to find me beautiful tells me daily how ugly I am, it starts to become ingrained. Our marriage ended, in part, because of my weight gain.
Unfortunately, that image of myself still remains. I am fat and ugly. worthy.
I accept how I look, so I continue to allow people to take pictures of me. I mean, pictures are fun. Other people see me looking this way all the time. Just because I avoid mirrors doesn’t mean I should avoid cameras. I have, however, found that I make faces at the camera a lot. I mean, if you look like this, you might as well work it, right?
But, while I failed at the “Five Pictures” challenge, I don’t think that’s what’s important. I don’t base my self-worth on my looks, but on who I am as a person. I’ve spent years becoming the person I want to be. I have worked hard to develop characteristics of which I can be proud. I have challenged myself to improve the way I see the world and it’s inhabitants and how I treat them.
I have become the person I want to be and I find that beautiful. To me, that is much more important.
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