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CrystalFaerie

What makes us beautiful

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Thought I would share a story :)

 

A few days ago, I overheard two of my coworkers talking about me. They said that I was a friendly, natural person and that they enjoyed getting to know me (I've been working a summer job, so we don't know each other very well yet). I was very flattered, like anyone would be :) But what caught my attention most, and what I've been pondering ever since, is that they called me beautiful.

 

I know that my physical features aren't outstanding. I'm not ugly, either, but I'm also aware there's nothing particularly remarkable about how I look. I have an even face and a healthy body - nothing more than average. People don't compliment me on my piercing eye colour, my lush hair, my spotless skin, the curves of my body, or the attractiveness of my voice. And yet, not for the first time, someone called me beautiful.

 

I never used to hear that. Even two years ago, someone complimenting me in that way would be unheard of. Why? Two years ago, I had the same face. I had the same eyes, nose, chin, hands, hips. Physically, I was the same. But there is a difference.

 

Two years ago, I was diagnosed with PTSD.

 

Two years ago, I was quiet, nervous, and only talked to people if I had to. As a freshly-turned eighteen-year-old, I was just learning to come out of my shell, but my emotional fragility held me back. I was a glass statue in a world of rocks… so I built a wall. How else could I protect myself? I went to social events, smiled when I had to, then curled up inside myself so nobody could touch the raw bits inside. On the surface, I looked the same. But I was different.

 

Not only that, the PTSD was built on layers of mistrust, of shyness, of self-consciousness and detachment I'd assimilated as a child and teenager. It took ten years, and my best friend's crazy sense of humour, to break me out of a cycle that a few bullies started. I'm still on the introverted end of the spectrum, but not to the point that I get nervous ordering food at restaurants and automatically assume I'm being lied to when I'm told I can leave work early.

 

Because that's the thing: outside, I just look a bit older, but inside, I've changed and grown so much. The PTSD will never completely go away, of course, and I'll always be quiet and prefer books to parties and stumble on my words when I get excited. But I'm braver. I'm happier. I laugh when something unfortunate happens (last weekend I fell into the lake in front of twenty people and walked away giggling like a maniac - true story) and I smile at people in the street. A few months ago, a stranger outside the supermarket told me to "keep smiling", and added that "it makes you look gorgeous". And that's exactly what I intend to do.

 

You know how people say confidence is key? It's true, and not just when you're flirting. You can tell when someone is happy and confident in themselves and their personality because it shines right through. The most beautiful person would have trouble finding a partner if they were grumpy, needy and didn't believe they deserved it. The guy that I'm interested in at the moment isn't as handsome as others, but it's the way he jokes around, the way he runs his hand through his hair, the way gets excited about the books he's reading, the way asks random people what their favourite word is - the way that he is altogether carefree and sociable and loves life - that makes me like him.

 

That's also why people have started telling me I'm beautiful.

 

I'm not going to say that outside beauty doesn't matter if you're beautiful inside, because we all know that - and we all know that it's not always true. What I'm getting at is that inside beauty makes you so much more attractive - and approachable - outside. So be yourself. Be open. Whether or not you have a monster inside you, and whether it's anxiety, depression, a lack of self-confidence or anything else, remember that it's not you. Fight it back. And smile.

 

Because that's what makes us beautiful.

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CrystalFaerie,

       Thank you for sharing your beautiful post. As someone who has also experienced PTSD, I can relate a little with what you have felt: the emotional fragility, nervousness, self-consciousness etc.. Your post reminded me that no matter the challenges life throws at us (like PTSD) we are still beautiful inside. 

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This is sooooooo true.  :wub:  YES! When we start to love ourselves, we "become" beautiful in the eyes of others, because others are mirroring our self-love and self-acceptance. Crystal, congrats! This is gorgeous. Love and Blessings, ~Noga

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