We have all seen those girls. You know, the ones with the long flowing hair and the picture perfect smile. The girl who always seems ready for a photo op. The girl who never has to worry about where she shops because they'll definitely have her size, and everything in her size will be cute. The girl who can turn heads whether she is in sweats or a ball gown. Well, I am most definitely not that girl.
I'm sure at this point someone will jump to my defense, but hear me out. From a young age, it was apparent to me that I would not be one of these girls with my toothy grin and my endlessly chubby cheeks. While these girls grew tall and thin, I grew curvy and awkward. These girls got boyfriends and I got a face full of acne. These girls got hundreds of friends and I got bullied. As a little girl, I knew that I was not a conventional beauty, but never once did that mean that I wasn't beautiful.
I am beautiful in the way that my thick hair falls all over my face when the windows are rolled down. I am beautiful in the way that my face turns red when I'm talking to a cute boy. I am beautiful in the way that my laugh bubbles up and over even when I try to contain it. I am beautiful in the way that my freckles make constellations that reach from every end of my body. I am beautiful in the way that my sister calls my stretch marks my "lighting strikes". Beauty is found in every curve of my body from chubby cheeks to the tips of my toes.
It is not just these physical traits that make me beautiful. There is beauty in my intelligence and my ambition. There is beauty in my will power and my determination. There is beauty in my courage and my kindness. There is beauty in my relationships with others. There is beauty in my humor and in my sarcasm. There is beauty in every imperfection. There is beauty inside of me, even the darkest parts.
Why then do we assume that anyone who is not necessarily conventionally pretty is not beautiful? Each and every one of you holds entire galaxies within yourself. You are so intricate and unique. You each hold a special place on this earth. You have the power to light up someone's entire day. You have the ability to make someone fall deeply in love with life. You have the power to do anything you want in life. Is that not beauty?
Each and every one of us are fighters and survivors. Each one of us has an entire beautiful garden growing from within us. Why not build each other up, embrace our differences, and plant seeds of our beauty wherever we can? Just because you're not conventionally pretty does not mean that you are not beautiful, and just because you may not see it does not mean that nobody else does. Embrace your flaws, quirks, and toothy grins because they are mesmerizing.