October 26, 2014

You Do Not Need To Be Beautiful To Be Loved

I awoke today with a certain built-up angst because of a picture my dad sent me earlier this week. It was an image of a young girl, who due to an interior disease has a loss of pigmentation throughout her exterior. 

Her skin is saturated brownish-white and her eyes are contrasting with both colors of brown and green. She is divinely majestic. 

I could easily just expose her picture, but I'd rather you imagine her. 

Imagine her being your daughter. Imagine her being your sister.

Imagine her being you. 

Now imagine your noteworthy features being ridiculed and bashed. Imagine feeling like you're ready to stream tears every time someone gives you a precarious look because you can't possibly blend in - where no amount of make-up can fully conceal what you look like to them. You unwillingly stand out because you are not the norm. 

Imagine feeling the urge to constantly compare yourself to others, and then further execrate yourself for not matching up because you diverge from all societal expectations of what we consider 'beautiful', or more commonly now 'sexy'. 

And when you aren't being scorned, you are being pitied. You are put on some forsaken pedestal because they feel you've somehow earned it solely by the virtue of your peculiar looks. 

Instead of accepting our differences, we marginalize them. Instead of embracing all of our imperfections, we mask them. We are so caught up within ideals that are frivolously out of this world, that we belittle all purpose - our individual purposes as a species. 

We demean our value as people.

I'm not about to get on a some self-righteous rampage because I've only now started to throughly develop an awareness at how much foolish emphasis we put on our exteriors amongst this generation and now sadly, more prominently among the upcoming one.

I do strongly believe we must love ourselves and that it is ultimately in our own will to fully commit to a self-love, whether interior or exterior. 

However, it seems as though our self-love is repressed when we are rejected by societal ideologies. Yet, loving ourselves will never come from how much validation we get from others who don't know or even come close to understanding you in the way you do and who more often than not, put an over-emphasis on how pretty, handsome, or unappealing you look on whatever given day. 

Truly loving oneself begins with you and ends with only you. It comes from the deepest, most precious parts about yourself; even the not-so nice ones. 

Now let's imagine a world where everything you've learned over-time to consider is beautiful becomes non-existent. What if beauty, real authentic beauty, had nothing to do with how 'perfectly' put together one is, or how many squats we must dedicate in order to amplify our given body features. 

What if we lived in a world where beauty wasn't solely a staple of appearance? It was merely an attribute that enhanced all the other rad parts about ourselves.

I know I'm only kidding myself to think that this kind of world will exist in its entirety, but we can at least begin to be attentive and suggestive about all the implications of beauty that we witness. 

If being beautiful nowadays is based solely on exterior credentials, then you know what? Fuck being beautiful. I want no part in it. 

I am not beautiful, I am me. And you, are you - distinctive and damn proud of it. Please know that this is enough. In fact, it's more than just enough. It's more than most of us are. 

You are not just some doppelgänger, and should never wish to be. 

Let's teach our kids and peers the importance of what self-value actually is. 

So when others approach him/her and calls them cute or pretty - they can respond, "I'm smart, too".

And when they get older and begin to be burdened with the realities of life, they don't choose who to date or marry sparingly. They are dealt with someone where they don't just tolerate each others quirks, but actually kind of like them. 

Let's learn to love in its entirety.

Featured on Thought Catalog

October 15, 2014

4 Years & Not Counting

Here we are. Hand in hand, and more motivated than ever before. 

Today, we celebrate us. Our four years, and (not) counting.

We celebrate our synchronizing efforts of who we've become as partners; as a unit, as a team.

We celebrate our devotion. Our unity. To each other and as vitally, to our individual selves that we refuse to lose sight of.

I'd say that is one of the many, many things that I appreciate about you most. The way you encourage me to do and be whatever, and whoever it is that I deem.  

You grant me so much liberty to evolve and/or contradict myself as many times as this life enables me to without any foul judgement.

You never constrain me.

You love me enough to let me be, and to let me go. To let me wander, because you know it always leads me back to you. 

That is the upmost gift within the unpredictable realms of my world and you will never truly understand how thankful I am for it - For you. 

It's okay because it is something only my heart can exclusively fathom.

You nor I will ever fully grasp the dynamics of such esteem, but it doesn't matter. I know we both amply feel it. 

Venturing and growing through life with you thus far, has been nothing short of empowering.

I look in the mirror today and the reflection of my 14-year-old self shows face, and she holds this "I knew it" grin that transcends through my being now.   

I am grinning, and I am whole. 

And on this day, this living memorable day, beyond every shadow of juvenile doubt - I cannot recall a single moment that my heart did not belong to you.  

So never mind four, seven, or ten years. You've given me an infinite number of moments coated with so much meaning. 

You give me meaning. 

Thank you universe, God and whatever almighty presence, for this love.  

signed, -S

To sum it up. 

October 13, 2014

You Don't Know What You Have 'Till It's Gone

It is a difficult era in which to know anything with any certainty. In these youthful days of glory, we become reluctant to commit to anything due to the predisposed notion that something or someone better may come along.

There may be some validity in that, and it can be an admirable quality to think that we won’t settle for anything until we’ve personally experienced what else is out there for us.

That urge is most especially understandable for deciphering who is right for us, or more importantly, who “the one” is. This seems to be intensified when we find ourselves convinced that we have found someone quite special, but then, the classic devil and angel analogy slowly creeps into our subconscious minds.

The gnawing predictions and inquiries of what you might lose if you decide to indefinitely commit to that special someone will begin to manifest and cloud your intuition:

"Is this what I really want? I’m still so young, what do I know about what I want? I don’t even know what I want to eat in the next hour. If I can’t make a decision as simple as what I want to eat, how can I decide with whom I can potentially spend the rest of my life? That’s a long freaking time. What if I commit too soon, and then the person I think is my soul mate will screw me over in a really traumatizing way, leaving me woefully alone with requited baggage. Forever."

While you continue to freak yourself out and ultimately shun yourself away from this person, you’ll do what you set out to do. Live your life and decide to explore the greener horizons with the preconceived certainty that when another special person comes along, you’ll be ready.

With time, if another notable person does, in fact, waltz into your life and pull at your heartstrings, you’ll know your initial doubts were plausible. The real risk, however, is the prospect that the other special person, whom you were certain would come, never does.

What if, after all of that time, you go to consider what else is out there, only to realize that "special" or even a glimmer of it only comes by rarely?

Then, all too suddenly, the retrospects of your life begin to render in your mind, and you struggle with a new understanding of what you repressed. It’s now probable that someone else took your given opportunity without any cruel hesitation because, well, how could someone not?

That kind of special quality you once held dear is inimitable. This painful revelation is like no other, and it is difficult to accept. I mean, you blatantly disregarded what this person was worth to you, and now, you’re left with no choice but to own up to your losses and then move on.

While this loss may feel like you’re a total failure when it comes to matters of love, for a moment, consider what you gained. I know it might sound a little foolish, but sometimes, these losses will enable you to be even more conscious or interconnected with yourself and the world around you.

You will learn to recognize the difference between petty doubts, which are natural when considering any life-altering decisions, and the burdening doubts, which are definitely the ones you need to address.

The realities and lessons of this experience, however, would have never transcended, had you not allowed yourself to go with your fear of failure rather than your hope for success. No matter how right or regretful the decision will ultimately turn out to be, it is your decision, which will help you learn for the next go-around.

Even if it takes what may feel like a lifetime to find someone as exceedingly special as that one person, and you spend a good amount of time dwelling on what could have been, surely, you’ll someday be able to value someone the way you once valued your special someone.

You just have to be willing to go there. Trust that you’ll be able to make a better decision in the future and that all is not lost. 

(Originally published & edited on Elite Daily)