In a world filled with unrealistic expectations, forced media, propaganda, and a market solely set on making you "perfect" in society's eyes, it's easy to see how some people struggle with finding self-love.
We've seen day-in-and-day-out the versions of us the media advertises, casting a dark shadow on the beauty industry. I, myself, for the longest time, struggled with finding my self-love for this reason.
In realizing how imperfect society was, I started to notice the beauty in it. It was the differences between the people themselves that made me realize how unique they are.
Growing up, I was full-figured, going to school with kids half my size and weight. Already seeing this difference was hard for me. What was harder, was seeing girls wear the newest and cutest clothing, while I couldn't. Reason being, they didn't have my size or the public deemed it as being unflattering for my shape. Because of this, for the longest time, I had insecurities. I only wore clothing that covered my figure and everything I didn't like and wished to hide away. It wasn't until late into high school that I noticed something.
I realized that society, the same one that tried to push "perfection" on me, was in and of itself flawed and imperfect. Seeing this made me question why I (myself), then, had to be what others wanted. In realizing how imperfect society was, I started to notice the beauty in it. It was the differences between the people themselves that made me realize how unique they are.
I came to understand that what society had taught me to believe was undesirable; it was completely wrong, and the concept was foolish. For it was my insecurities and the parts I didn't like, that were beautiful, unique, and worth being loved. Society and media taught me or tried to teach me that I had to be a size 2, to be what was considered appealing or admirable to the public—failing to show me the true beauty, in everyone's differences and the parts they deemed "ugly".
I write this because too many people have gotten caught up in the world's beauty standards, almost losing themselves trying to be "perfect".
Love isn't just about with whom you want to spend the rest of your life, but more importantly, it's about self-love and the journey to finding it—taking care of your own needs and happiness, while not sacrificing your wellbeing to please others. A concept society has brushed away, and one that needs to be revitalized.
If society as a whole wants to grow, we need to recognize our differences in our beauty, see them as still being beautiful, and help teach younger generations the importance and value of self-love. Because at the end of the day, how do you expect to love someone else, if you can't love yourself?