That is a picture I took of myself, a “selfie” of sorts, which is something that our society takes advantage of to label someone as narcissistic. And I resent that label. There are much bigger problems in this world than girls who think they are pretty. One of those problems is girls who don’t think they are pretty.
(I wish I could take credit for saying that but I read it on tumblr once.)
I think I am pretty. Sometimes. Sometimes I think I am beautiful. Sometimes I think I am too hot (hot damn). Sometimes I don’t think any of these things. Sometimes I think I am not pretty. Or not smart. Or not talented. Or not a good actress. Or not a good person. Sometimes — well, more often than sometimes — I think long and hard about all of the things that I am not, as opposed to all of the things that I am.
So now I’m going to talk about all of the things that I am.
I am attractive. What that means is very arbitrary and specific to culture, and it is also the least important part of a person. But I would argue by Western standards I am a very attractive person. I have beautiful, big blue eyes. My body is a nice shape. I just cut off a lot of my hair and it looks pretty fly. I have very nice hands. I have a lovely long neck and very long legs. My face is pleasing to the eye.
I am tall. I am statuesque. I stand out, literally. My height is beautiful. My height makes me beautiful.
I am intelligent. I was the star student of my public school career. I was in an enrichment program until grad eight. I currently hold a three-point-something GPA, whatever that means. But beyond that, I am logical and a quick thinker and I can see the world from a holistic standpoint.
I am very funny. I forget that sometimes. I am witty and quick and I am the Pun Queen. Just try to take my title. I dare you.
I am an incredibly talented artist. I can draw and paint and sculpt very well. I have worked hard to hone my skills and I am very proud of the beautiful art I have created and will continue to create. Oh and I have a PhD in crafts.
I am empathetic. I do my best to see situations from the perspectives of everyone involved and try to understand their situation to the best of my ability so that I can nurture my point of view and make more informed decisions.
I am fashionable. And I am great at doing makeup. Maybe these things are shallow, but hey they’re true.
I am a pretty dope cook. I just ate some quiche that I made and it was better than anything I’ve ever bought at a store. A couple weeks ago I made Mexican Quinoa and it was ridiculously tasty. Last semester I made my own vegetable soup from scratch on a whim and oh my gosh it was great. I will also win you over with baked goods.
I am a better-than-average basketball player and can sink a mean three-pointer.
I am an incredibly kind person. I care a whole lot about people. I do nice things for people, both friends and strangers, just for the sake of doing them. And I don’t need recognition; the feeling I get when I make someone else happy or make their life easier is a feeling that keeps me going.
I am an excellent hugger. It’s probably because I’m tall, but I just give really, really good hugs.
I am a talented actor.
I am not very good at believing in myself. If you’re reading all this and thinking, “Wow, this Marryl chick is a narcissistic, arrogant jerkface,” then clearly you don’t know me very well. Writing all of this, and knowing that in about five minutes I am going to click “publish” and send it off to the internet, is a ridiculously hard thing for me to do. Because I am hard on myself, I don’t believe in myself that often, and sometimes I don’t think I love myself. I want people to like me, and so I’ve become so terrified of coming across as arrogant that I’ve tried really hard to convince everyone, including myself, that I am not the greatest thing in the world. I am far from it. And I hate that I do this. I hate how mean I am to myself. If anyone said to one of my best friends the things that I say to myself I would probably punch that person in the mouth.
I am trying really damn hard to believe in myself, to think I’m talented, to think I can succeed. Really damn hard. But that’s a really damn hard thing to do. Apparently I’m supposed to overcome this, the biggest struggle in my life, by March 31st. But that isn’t going to happen. Because in the same way that falling in love with another person takes time, falling in love with yourself takes time. Your relationship with yourself has as many ups and downs and adventures and emotionally heightened states as your relationships with other people have. But at some point I need to cut all the bullshit and realize that yes, I am an amazing person, and I deserve to be loved, and most importantly I deserve to be loved by me. I’m trying, I promise I am, and publishing this post is one step I am making, as terrified as it makes me.
I am not perfect. But I am working on understanding that perfect isn’t word that can describe a person. I am so much more than just perfect.