I asked text subscribers (click here to join the list, you are the first to know when a new blog post is put up!) to answer this question..
What is something you used to hate about yourself that you are learning to love?
This is what they had to say.
In elementary school I was the only kid with freckles. I was jealous of the other kids who didn’t have thousands of little brown dots all over their bodies. After every summer, my classmates would come back to school sporting pretty, even tans and I would come back with the same ghostly white skin and a plethora of new frecks. I was way too young to be so insecure about something, and yet I was. Until one day a kind stranger told me she adored my freckles and wished she had them. Something clicked in my mind, and I realized that being the only one with freckles was kind of cool. Flash forward 8 years and now people are painting fake freckles on their faces. What once made me feel strange now makes me feel unique.
I used blame my mom for not giving me decent boobs and a “perfect” body. My friends would wear crop tops and spaghetti straps when it was hot; I would stick to my regular outfits: big sweaters (to hide my flat chest) and pants (to hide my not so curvy body.) I would look at my friend’s cleavage, then look at my chest and wonder: why?
I would research, typing “home remedies for bigger breasts” or “how can I make my chest grow?” into Google.
Nothing seemed to work.
I’ve had to learn to accept my beautiful unique body. I retrained myself and was ablt to stop comparing my body and life to others. I think that having people to talk to about my insecurities is liberating, and has enabled me to be strong and confident.
Since last year I been saying this every morning while looking at myself in the mirror:
I repeat it 3 times:
“You’re not perfect, but you are beautiful. Own it!”
It’s taken me 17 years to accept and love that I’m black. For most of my life I have not seen myself as beautiful. My hair is kinky, my skin is dark .. I remember my mother struggling to teach me how to love and be proud of my blackness. Looking back, I feel so guilty for putting her through that. But on TV, in fashion magazines, on social media, etc. there’s a lack of positive representation of black beauty. Like many other black kids, my mind was brainwashed to see “Eurocentric ” features as elite beauty. As I grew older and learned more about black history, I became more and more proud of my blackness. Then when the black lives matter movement started, I saw so many black people join in solidarity and it filled me with so much empowerment and inspired me to love being black.
My qualities, my inner self. I love the little things about myself that I never thought I would: my passion for art, how I can’t stand tomatoes, how I could smell roses and lavender all day, or how whenever I go out I count out loud how many dogs I’ve seen. It’s the little things we love about other people, and I’m thankful I’ve learned to love about myself.
I used to hate is my size. I’ve always been way taller than other girls. I looked in the mirror and noticed my stomach or stretch marks. I remember freshman year of high school someone asked if I was enjoying my senior year, or in 4th grade someone would ask if I was in middle school. Now I look in the mirror and smile because I am happy with what i got, and honestly, I love how tall I am. It makes me feel powerful.
“Chinchos” are what I call my little back rolls. My mother always teased me for my plus size body, making me go on tons of diets even when I was really young. I love them now because they make me look cute and plump. They hold up my crop tops. I love them because I’ve always had them, and I wouldn’t feel authentically me without my perfect imperfections.
I used to hate how I dressed, how my hair looked in the morning, the type of glasses I wore… but now, I’ve realized everything I used to hate about myself are the things people love about me. I get compliments all the time on how nice my hair is, how people love my glasses & my style. I used to hate my anxiety because it interfered with my everyday life, but now I accept it as a part of me and it makes me who I am. Without my insecurities, I wouldn’t be who I am today. I look back on the progress I have made and it makes me so proud to be me!