To any of my younger followers that may feel bad about their appearance:
I present to you 2 pictures. First is a picture taken last year (I was 25 then, I am now 26) and second, my junior year picture from my year book that year (I was 16).
I was a person that ALWAYS struggled with how I looked growing up. I am, and have always been, REALLY short. Despite being on sports teams (softball and field hockey) and eating pretty healthy (salads, yogurt, fruits, and veggies) I was always on the chubbier side. I had, and still do, have somewhat of a baby face, although it had leaned out some with age. I still get mistaken frequently for being a teenager. I had some really gorgeous friends in high school, and I always felt kind of blah about my appearance as a result. And my other friends, well, they were all kind of assholes. Actually, when I was 16, some of my friends decided to tell the school counselor that I was suicidal before even talking to me about it because I posted sad lyrics to songs on AIM instant messenger (dating myself here like woah). Among more personal reasons and experience that I don’t want to share here, I always had shit for self esteem. Was I ugly? Nah, looking back I totally wasn’t. I was just a kid. And when you’re 16, you are in this weird in between where you aren’t REALLY a kid, but you aren’t really an adult either, and you don’t really know what you should look like, but you just know that if you look different from anyone else, you feel like you aren’t good enough. Well, that’s what I thought anyway.
If I could go back to my 16 year old self and say something, this is what I would say:
I would tell her, Sweetheart, you pick your head up, and you smile wide. You may not think you’re beautiful now. I KNOW you are, but no number of times of me telling you will make you believe it, and that’s ok. But one day, you will look in the mirror, and you will see a face that is smiling back at you, and you will finally be able to say it. You will be able to tell yourself that you look beautiful and actually believe it. Don’t compare yourself to your friends, and don’t worry about what other people say or tell you. You do what you need to do for yourself, and not only will you do amazing things, but you will become someone that you will be proud to be.
And since I can’t tell my 16 year old self this, I am sharing it with all of you. If you feel like you aren’t pretty, if you don’t have confidence and you believe you never will, it’s ok. Being a teenager is hard. Fuck, life is hard. It really is. Each stage in life presents its own challenges and struggles. But just trust me on this, I feel what some of you are going through because I was there not so long ago, and there are days still for me that aren’t great. But you ARE beautiful, inside and out, and even if you don’t believe it now, as long as you keep telling yourself that, as long as you keep going and you hold your head up high, someday, I KNOW you will believe it too.