Why is it that when many of us look in the mirror, we begin to nitpick at everything we see? We start concentrating harder than ever on the shape of our nose, the eye that’s bigger than the other, and our stomach. Body image struggles and low self-esteem is a problem that plagues many teenage and preteen girls today. Since we live in a society that tells us the ideal look we should have, so many of us strive to achieve that.
My Struggle: My body image struggle began at 11 years old—when puberty hit. I remember towering over all of the boys in my grade. When my hips began to widen, I attempted to cover them by wearing baggy clothing, leading some to begin to call me a “boy”. My first pimple appeared when I was 11, and instead of ignoring it, I spent hours in the mirror, with a safety pin, attempting to pop it. This led to severe scarring, some faintly apparent on my face today. All throughout middle and high school I obsessed over my weight; exercising vigorously to avoid the natural weight gain that occurred as a young girl progressed through puberty. I submerged myself in a certain mindset that It wasn’t until my senior year in high school that I began to finally accept myself for who I was— imperfections and all.
Still fighting: When my fight began, I dreaded getting out of bed because I was afraid to face myself in the mirror. But now, I am in a much better place today than I have ever been before; each day I wake up, happy, ready to face the world. It took both time and support from the people around me to get to where I am today. However, there are still days when I wake up, and find it hard to get out of bed. When those days come, I look to my phone for inspirational quotes, reminding me that I am beautiful both inside and out. In order for me to become that confident person I want to be, I have to stop fighting myself and come to realize that I am made with imperfections. That realization will take many years, and each day is a battle that I am willing to fight.
If you have ever struggled with the way you look, then you know how hard it is. You may even continue to look in the mirror and hate everything about yourself. But, how you perceive yourself is not how others view you. Surround yourself with uplifting quotes, and images of women of all different shapes and sizes.
You are all beautiful, Collegiates!