Finding Beauty

I may not always see beauty when I look in the mirror. 

I may not always see beauty when I look down at my body.

I may not always see beauty when I am showering and touch the stretch marks, or am reminded of the self harm scars on my arms. Those scars are from years ago and I haven’t self harmed in a good amount of time now. I see that staying clean is a sign of strength and beauty, though I find it hard to take it in for myself.

I may not always see beauty in the way I talk. Sometimes anxiety takes over and it’s hard to articulate exactly how I feel or what I want to say. Sometimes I feel as if my voice sounds like a “valley girl”, and maybe it does at times. At a young age I learned that acting stupid was key to being accepted and liked by others. I can recall from fifth grade, which was interestingly enough the same grade I began developing a negative body image, pretending I was stupid and using this “valley girl” dialect felt natural to me, as it gave me somewhat of a purpose. Being myself never felt like enough. So I attached myself to this role of being “the stupid one” in the moments I felt too anxious or didn’t want to make a mistake. I’m learning now that mistakes are okay, and that there is beauty in imperfection.

I may not always be able to see beauty in how I look or what I sound like, but I know one thing for sure: I do see some beauty in who I am. I see beauty in how I write and the hopeful message I try to convey to others. I see beauty in how I encourage others and how compassionate I am. I see beauty in nearly everything and everyone around me.

I didn’t have complete control over what situations and people had influenced me at a young age; I adapted and reacted to what I had. However, I choose to continue bettering myself, in life and recovery, and I choose to continue finding beauty in myself and others. And one day I will have a clearer vision of who I am; it may not be today, but I hold onto this hope that if I can find some things about myself beautiful today, I will be able to see it for what it truly is one day.

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