Belief is a wonderful thing. Everyone has a different set of beliefs. They surround us, they control us, and they can swallow us up whole. My belief resides in self-love. I believe in the importance of self-love. Self-love is not only appreciating and loving the aspects of yourself that you see as beautiful, but accepting and loving the aspects of yourself that you do not. I believe there is no such thing as flaws. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and if you learn to see the beauty in everything, you will find yourself free of the bonds of hatred. An open heart sees things a confined one does not. It is important that you do not let a ribcage of hatred constrict your heart. I admit, I do not love myself. But I truly believe that one day I will have opened my heart fully and learned to love what I do not currently love about myself.
I am trying to love my nose, my mouth, my eyes. The shape of my face, the slant of my eyebrows. My skin and my bones. Self-love is not an easy task but do not let yourself be consumed by hatred. It can tear you apart limb from limb. Flesh and muscle from bones. Self-love has never been easy for me, as long as I can remember I have battled an everlasting battle of self-hatred. I did not like the way I looked, I did not like the way I thought, I did not like the way I spoke, and I did not feel like I deserved to be alive.
When I was younger I was the first to hit puberty. I grew in places other girls were not and faced challenges my peers had yet to experience. From a young age, my skin started to break out. And at first, I thought nothing of it, until kids my age started commenting on how ugly it is. They treated my skin as if it were a burden, or something despicable. My own skin had been turned into a red letter on my body, everyone around me had to look at me and see the blemishes on my face. From the unpleasant acknowledgment of my classmates blossomed a deep self-hatred; a hatred that would still impact me years later.
However, my biggest insecurity is my weight. As a child I was scrawny, but as I got older I started to put on pounds. Kids my age found all sorts of vile nicknames to call me. I was twelve when it really started. By thirteen I was trying dangerous diets, counting calories like they were the center of the universe, and hiding it all behind a smile. No one could have imagined the thoughts running around my head all day, every day. A conscience telling me I was ugly, laughing and jeering at me when I looked at myself in the mirror. I was never good enough. My monster of self-hatred had taught me to hate every aspect of myself. I had myself convinced that what I looked like was more important than who I was. As my confidence slowly drained, I pulled away from doing things like posting on social media and wearing certain clothes. I subconsciously let the words of others tell me how to live my own life.
I do not love myself but because of my experiences, my battles, I know the importance of self-love. This word holds much more than a definition, it holds a spiritual power. Not having self-love can destroy us, and that just isn’t living.