For the longest time, I didn’t smile. People who know me now may find this hard to believe, but I just didn’t. Not as big as I smile now, I would smile a closed mouth self-conscious smile. Why? Because I have a stain on my two front teeth from when I was a kid. It was glaringly apparent to me and so I practiced smiling without showing teeth in the mirror. It wasn’t until I stopped caring what people might think about me and just loved myself that I began to smile freely and I realized, most people didn’t even notice or care. Most people would just smile back.
It’s easy for us to notice something about ourselves, we are with ourselves every day after all! And we take it and analyze it and look it over. We sometimes will deem ourselves “less than” or “not good enough”. I don’t wear makeup, I’ve worn it perhaps twice in my life both times at Mary Kay parties. If you handed me some makeup, I would probably just use it in one of my crafting projects.
Because I don’t wear makeup, I can easily stare at my face and pick out everything that’s wrong. Sometimes I binge watch makeup tutorials on YouTube and I think, I could correct every little flaw. Then I smile, and I see my less than perfect smile that actually helps to spread joy and I remind myself that it’s okay. I’m perfectly imperfect.
I’m not perfect, but I’m me. And that’s good enough for me.
I’m sometimes fashion challenged and yes if you look hard enough you might catch me wearing one red sock and one green sock for no reason at all except that it might have amused me for the day. And for the people who get the courage to ask about all my stretch marks, I can tell them about Pemphigus and help spread awareness. When they hear I’m a chef, they think there might be a more exciting story about a battle with the deep fryers, but all the same it opens up conversations with complete strangers.
I find it curious, it’s much easier for me to see the beauty in a lot of other people then what they see in themselves. It’s something about comparison and the race for perfection, that we could all just improve ourselves just a little bit more but never actually arriving. But really, the imperfections? The things that set us apart and make us less than perfect? Are beautiful.
It’s uniquely ours, every scar tells a story. Every line holds a memory.
So embrace your imperfections and your flaws, you’re beautiful. Just the way you are.