/ Wednesday, February 1, 2017
Self Acceptance - My Beauty Mark
When looking at my photos or if you were to see me in person, it would be quite obvious that I have a huge facial discoloration, commonly known as a birthmark, covering nearly half the left side of my face. I can't hide it, and so far, I have never tried to. That doesn't mean I liked it. I have never been proud of my birthmark, even though there were times I acted like I was in order to save face. I have never truly embraced my birthmark.
My experience with low self-esteem and insecurity began very early. Since my earliest memories, which is about age 4, I have been teased and taunted by peers about my birthmark.
Growing up, there were numerous times I was called names and laughed at inside and outside of school. It wasn't something that happened every day, but it happened often. There were still boys who had crushes on me and oddly, some of them teased me the most! During my pre-teen years and into high school I was always very social, but I definitely had my fair share of rejection and teasing that contributed to my previously exhibited low self-esteem. I battled with internal issues daily, especially being friends with girls who were considered some of the prettiest in our grade levels.
I hated being around smaller kids who didn't know me personally. I knew they would stare and ask, out of curiosity, "what happened to your face?" Heck, I even dealt with adults who would blatantly ask. It was always embarrassing for me.
Although the low self-esteem has subsided, I'm still insecure. When filming YouTube videos I fret over low lighting that makes the left side of my face appear too dark. I refer to my "normal" side as my "good side". I need to stop treating that part of me like it's a burden.
I was recently introduced to and adopted a new concept into my psyche to help me on this journey of acceptance; wabi-sabi. The term and concept are of Japanese origin and represent the process of finding beauty in transience and imperfection.
Along with this new concept comes a trade of words. Honestly, I can't stand hearing the word "birthmark". Every time I say it or hear it, I feel some type of way. I just don't like it! From now on, I'll only refer to it as my beauty mark so that I remind myself that what covers my skin is not a mark of burden, but one of beauty.
Thanks for reading! 💗