Hi, I’m a teenage girl.
I walked down the hallways at school and thought to myself that if I lost at least 20 pounds, I’d look just as good as the other girls and have men swooning over me—even though the doctor said I was healthy and my weight was where I should be.
I’d sit down in my desk and think that if I was only a little smarter, I’d have closer to a 100% in my advanced classes, than I already had.
I wore makeup because I thought my skin was ugly and that my peers would laugh at me and mock me.
When I felt insecure, I thought of somewhere I could go to have reassurance and acceptance.
Was there a hole big enough for me to crawl into and hide?
At the end of my final year of high school, I’m finally realizing the secret to the whole “fitting in” thing.
The words, mentioned above, basically made up the girl I was.
Do I still struggle? Um, duh!
However, as each day goes by, I no longer feel the need or urge to put myself down. The more I think of it, it was like a disease that had a hidden cure that seemed impossible to find.
In the Fall of this year, I will start a new chapter in my life as a college student earning a BFA in Musical Theatre.
This is an accomplishment I’m proud to announce–but where am I going with this?
A cliché version of this message, would lie, and say that I found acceptance through performing and that my life was changed the moment I set foot on a stage.
As significant as my creative outlet is to my life, it’s not my place of acceptance.
A place of acceptance is inside of the self.
I cannot begin to understand how I am supposed to be accepted by others, if I cannot accept myself.
To me, it’s the same as saying that I cannot expect others to respect me if I cannot respect myself. Without self-acceptance, what good does that do for me?
Before, when I doubted myself, I suffered anxious fits and couldn’t make a decision to save my life.
Now, I tackle the problems the world hands me one at a time.
I trust myself and accept myself for who I am.
Do I know how I learned to accept myself?
Well, in all honesty, no.
I do know that if I can’t love myself, then who will love me?
I don’t know about the rest of the world, but I believe that love is a beautiful thing that people cannot truly live without.
If I want love, I need acceptance—and I know just the place to find it.
Author: Taylor Isabel
Editor: Ashleigh Hitchcock
Photo: passing light and film,
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