Learning To Love Myself | Teen Ink

Learning To Love Myself

October 2, 2010
By JesusIsMyFortress BRONZE, Georgetown, Georgia
JesusIsMyFortress BRONZE, Georgetown, Georgia
3 articles 8 photos 6 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Some women choose to follow men, and some women choose to follow their dreams. If you're wondering which way to go, remember that your career will never wake up and tell you that it doesn't love you anymore."
-Lady Gaga

“You must hate your hair. Don’t you?”

Not again. It’s just an average day in Science, where I have the pleasure of sitting next to the annoying mean girl who treats everyone, including her “best friends”, like dirt. Did I mention she also has the IQ of a carrot? She had just bombarded me with a series of shallow, trivial questions about my hair.

“Why don’t you ever wear it up?”

“Why is it curly?”

“Why is it brown? Why don’t you dye it?”

“Why don’t you cut your hair to make it like mine?”

I let out a quiet groan of annoyance. Science was one of my favorite subjects, but the she-devil sitting to my immediate right made it a little less gratifying. I answered all the questions with curt answers, dripping in a leave-me-alone-you-shallow-imbecile attitude, but she never got the message. But that last question made me stop, and really think.

“You must hate your hair. Don’t you?”

I’m not about to lie, I did hate my hair. But I was not going to sit there and give her the satisfaction of knowing that I hated something about myself. She thrived off of other people’s belittlement. She grew a head taller when she made someone feel bad, or pointed out someone’s flaws. I was not about to point out my own flaws for her. That would basically be like screaming “Hey! You don’t have to rack your brain looking for something to make fun of me for, I’ll just make fun of myself for you!”

I started to ponder on the subject of my hair. It was brown, shoulder length, fine, and oily at times. Frizz was a nemesis that almost always floated around my head like a frantic halo of chaos. But overall, it was some pretty nice hair. And yet, I still complained. I still hated how it was oily and flat by 2:00, and my bangs always managed to have a gap instead of covering my entire forehead. It never cooperated, and I couldn’t get it to be straight, despite my constant prayers and 11:11 wishes.

But then I started to think about how some people have no hair. I’d seen that my (now deceased) Grandpa’s hair had fallen out from chemotherapy treatment when I went up to Michigan this summer to visit him, and I’ll be darned if I ever heard him complain about his hair falling out, or his pain for that matter. I thought of all the people who battle cancer, and lose their hair to chemotherapy. You never heard anyone who had gone through that complain about the hair loss; I guess being faced with the possibility of death made them realize how trivial the human race and its obsession with outer beauty is.

At that moment, I faced a tough decision. I could hate a part of me, hate the hair that God had given me, and give her the satisfaction of my unhappiness, or I could love myself 100%, and thank God for giving my soul such a wonderful masterpiece to dwell in during my short stay on Earth. I could question God’s exquisite design he had laid out for me, or could praise and uplift both Him and myself.

“No, actually, I love it.”

She sat there, stunned, obviously defeated after trying to get me to put myself down. She uttered a quick “Oh”, and hastily turned 90 degrees to the right to face the front. Maybe she was trying to escape her defeat, or her limited mental capacity pulled her attention from the complexity of my high self-esteem. I’ll never know. But I’ll always remember the day I learned how to not only love myself, but to love my hair.

The author's comments:
Who knew that an everyday annoyance could turn into a life-changing blessing?

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