I admit it. I am fairly quick to judge when it comes to my self-image. I am always on a quest to find physical perfection and in turn, I am disappointed with myself on a daily basis. Unfortunately, I am corrupted by the ignorance of “Hollywood”, believing that physical perfection is defined by a smaller waistline, bigger boobs, and a rear-end that never stops. In fact, I will be brutally honest and tell you that on a consistent basis, I dream of being what I am not physically. I say to myself “Once I look this way, everything will change.”
This world has given me a skewed perception on my physical self. Do you know why I really think the way I do? The moment I step out into the world, I am bombarded by the PERFECT paparazzi. As I check-out at the grocery store, a display of airbrushed models and actresses stand in groups by the registers screaming, “This is what you are not and this is what you need to be!” When I go to the movies, celebrity women remind me that I DON’T wake up in the morning with my makeup perfectly applied. As I step into the world each day, I am followed by the ideals of Hollywood that say “Cathy, you just don’t fit the bill!”
To prevent me from going completely insane from such thoughts, I am forced to take a step back and view the bigger picture. The reality is simply this: “Hollywood” isn’t real. All of those models and famous people that we try to live up to are actually real people with real bodies hiding behind fake personas. The pictures we see are airbrushed and cropped, so that we only see the “Perfect” stuff. I can guarantee that if we went behind the scenes of any of those shoots, we would see cellulite, ripples, wrinkles, and people who are just as insecure as you and I. It would be a bonding moment that’s for shizzle!
Marilyn Monroe once said “Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius and it’s better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.” She must be crazy! How can our imperfections be remotely beautiful when we are so ashamed and disgusted by them? What I am gradually learning is that imperfections, physical or not, make us who we are. Growing up, I remember never caring if I got a scar. For me, collecting scars was like having mini journal entries all over my body! They were reminders of those crazy moments that have come and gone. From the time I got ran over with a bike (Yes, this is true!) to the moment I burnt my arm with a curling iron while getting ready for a date (So not worth it, dang it), my scars tell all.
I now strive to love and accept my body instead of being disappointed for what it’s not. Instead of thinking how fat I’ll get for eating a cookie, I realize that by not overindulging on junk, my body stays healthy and happy. I look in the mirror, and I am more thankful for my not so perfect legs, the few stretch marks I have on my hips, and my little tummy that I normally struggle to hide. Scars, wrinkles, imperfections, whatever you want to call them; each one has a story to tell. And your stories are what make who you are.
Imperfection is beauty.
Featured Photo by Missi Photographie