Tuesday, August 4, 2015

KUWK: Looking Funny

Yeah. I'm addressing it. Because one, we do real life over here. And two, because sometimes it's hard. Some days are harder than others and I know I'm not the only one out there who may not look in the mirror and always think "yeah girl. You got it going on."

So let's talk it out. 

For those of you who don't know me, 5 years ago I was diagnosed with ocular melanoma (a really really rare eye cancer). If you have a good amount of free time on your hands you can read the journey here, but for purposes of this post you just need to know the following: I had two surgeries and five rounds of radiation. I lost all of my eyelashes in my left eye, it has a consistent level of red and puffy, and thanks to no longer being able to see out of it, it no longer looks center. 

I'm model material :) 

But this isn't a woe is me post. Cause here's the thing: it is what it is. I never really understood the phrase "beauty is in the eye of the beholder" until I had to learn to live with looking a little different. This is what makes me, me. This is my thing. This is my struggle. Everyone has one. Even those people you don't think have one. Some are on the inside, some are on the outside, but everyone has an insecurity. The fun part is learning how to overcome it :)

When I was first diagnosed, I was 21 years old and getting healthy wasn't my primary concern. I just wanted to look normal. I wanted to enter the post-college "real world" looking like a normal young adult. No one could guarantee that for me, but I took my chances. And guess what? It didn't quite turn out like I hoped. 

Y'all I prayed DAILY for my eyelashes to grow back. Every time I thought about it I prayed about it. For the 6 months after surgery I had to wear sunglasses day in/day out. For a year I didn't even wear eye make up. I couldn't understand why God wasn't listening to me. Why he wouldn't just let my left eye match my right eye....like it once did before. 

But alas, we're five years down the road and it's beginning to make sense. Some days I like looking a little different. It's like my trademark. I overcame something as a young adult that many people will never have to do in their lifetime. It's my battle scar. 

And then some days it's really hard. It still hurts when the grocery store clerk asks what happened to my eye. I cringe when I meet new people and they stare a little longer than appropriate. And it still stings a little when I look at pre-cancer pictures and "remember when." 

But you gotta remember this, people. You have to remember that your magnitude of beauty lies in your own perspective. It's hard to be a female in this world. I get it. I see the magazine ads, I watch TV, I understand what you consider your "measuring stick." To hell with it all. THIS should be your measuring stick:

 Word to yo mama. This is what matters. People only see what you portray. And if you want to portray that you are beautiful - then you have to believe it yourself. 


 I'm all kinds of on my soapbox right now. I just want to go talk to teenage girls all over America. I get it. I thought I'd never want to take a picture again. And have you seen my instagram? I'm such an overgrammer. I thought I'd for sure become a social recluse. After about 4 months of a pity party I was back to having zero free time. I thought no one would want me to be in their wedding like this. Been a bridesmaid seven times now. I thought I'd never find someone who would love me if I looked like this. Well I found one, and ironically, he didn't even meet me until after surgery. Hook, line, and sinker :)   

Again. It's hard. I get that, too. I'm not proclaiming to never be bothered by it. I am here to tell you that I am absolutely dreading the whole engagement picture/wedding picture situation. Instagram has some awesome filters, but a camera that close to my face? Gives me the heebie jeebies. 

You (and your negative thoughts) are your biggest obstacle. Well, negative thoughts and a negative attitude. No one cares how gorgeous you are if you're rude. I doubt you have anyone you put in your "hot and mean" friend group. I usually don't like to admit my mom is right, but she grew up telling me "pretty is as pretty does." Yeah. My future kids are so going to be hearing that phrase in their sleep. 

Plus from what I hear, as you get older things sag, turn gray, and get veiny. So you might as well fall in love with yourself now...cause it might be downhill from here :)

Five years ago I would have looked at this picture and immediately deleted it. Now I'm posting it on a blog for everyone and their third cousin to see. Because now I just see a picture of a really happy girl at a baseball game with her dad. 

Be who you are - just the way you are. Believe it, be proud of it, and no one else will be able to see anything else besides it. 

Until next time,


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