This post is also available in: French
Below is a powerful guest post from Crystal on how she grew to see and love herself as perfectly imperfect. With flawless-looking photos of models across the internet, Crystal’s experience of struggling to try to meet an unrealistic standard of beauty may sound familiar.
All of my life I was always trying to be perfect in every way, shape, and form. In my eyes if I was not the best at something then I was the worst. I felt a lot of pressure from a very young age; as the oldest of twelve grandchildren, I always tried to live up to the expectations of others.
I am half Turkish and have always had dark hair, brown eyes, and lots of curves. While I grew to embrace my features, they didn’t meet the standard of beauty I was raised with. I was an 80’s baby and in the 90’s Kate Moss and other blonde, blue eyed, and incredibly skinny models were the standard of beauty at the time. I was none of these things, yet everyone around me seemed to be.
In the Grip of Addiction
I felt like I did not belong. I turned to drug and alcohol. All of that fear and insecurity disappeared the second I put a drink or substance in my body. I finally fit in somewhere… but with the wrong crowd and wrapped up in the wrong things. The drugs and alcohol worked for a while but quickly turned on me. I was alone and depressed. And I hated myself, even more so than before. It was then that I reached my bottom and desperately needed help. I was lucky enough to get the treatment I needed and the tools to begin my journey in recovery and my new way of life.
A Perfectly Imperfect Love of the Self
Don’t get me wrong I have had red, purple, brown, and highlighted my hair. This for me is a form of self-expression and not trying to fit into some sort of mold that society or anyone else tells me I should fit into. The difference is that today I love myself for exactly who I am – perfectly imperfect. How I look, the number on the scale, what I wear… none of this matters. What matters today is how I treat others, my word, my grace, and love for myself and others.
About the Writer
Crystal Hampton, MS, B.Ed., is a 37-year-old avid writer from South Florida. She loves snuggling with her teacup Yorkie Gator and boyfriend Adam. She works for a digital marketing company that advocates spreading awareness on the disease of addiction. Her passion in life is to help others by sharing her experience, strength, and hope.