STRENGTH IN VULNERABILITY

Photo taken by Olivia Cromie

I can confess that being in front of a camera is probably one of the most uncomfortable things for me to do. My friend Olivia asked me to model for her last semester for a photography class and it made me realize that I can't be the only person who is so afraid to be seen in such a vulnerable state. I had to be in underwear and try to act as normal as possible and that was not happening whatsoever until I realized that this vulnerable state made me feel at ease with something I've been fighting with for a while now.

This post is mainly a message to anyone who like me understands they're not perfect and know they have many things to work on about themselves whether it's your body, your personality, or your goals. You're not alone. Like many people I have self-esteem problems. Being petite, curvy with my forever fluctuating weight, and having curly hair are sometimes things that either tick me off or make me feel like I am ugly or less than other girls around me. Growing up in a society where all of those things are not the norm or it's not considered the staple of "being beautiful" is very hard to get over and be okay with yourself.

I am 20 years old with braces and that in itself was so hard to deal with once I got them right out of high school.  When I decided to get braces it was because I wanted to change what I didn't like about myself, I had never been comfortable with my smile but growing up my family wasn't able to afford orthodontics for me or my siblings so when I was working and could make that decision for myself I went ahead with it. I wanted to smile in pictures more and feel pretty, not for other people but for myself. I also used to straighten my hair all of the time because everyone loved how it looked despite the fact that my hair was overly damaged, I would buy the most expensive makeup and ridiculous clothes to try to keep an image and those were all things I wasn't happy with, they weren't me. Many of these things have changed the last couple of years and improved.

Loving yourself is important and it's something I try to remember everyday because it sure as hell doesn't come easy.  A big part of the problem is the society that we live in and how it markets superficial beauty and lifestyles as something we should aspire to because it's a problem many people do suffer with at various stages in their life and it's simply wrong. Most of those expectations are unrealistic and unhealthy targeting the younger audience. It is not selfish to want to improve yourself, but remember that accepting your flaws is the most important thing you can do for your health and moving past obstacles you are facing that are related to your personality or image is something to be proud of. Comparing yourself to other people around you will only help break you down, those thoughts are the kind that set your progress back. Some days are better than others, but I do believe happiness starts from within and to achieve that we have to love ourselves first.

I hope you're all having a beautiful week. Feel free to comment or subscribe below,

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Good vibes always