Growing up, I was the true ugly duckling. If you have seen the selfies I have posted on social media, that seems a little dramatic and far fetched. But, I'm like Abraham Lincoln and I never tell a lie.
I was awkward, over weight, had crooked teeth, wore hand me down clothes, had thick glasses and all that jazz. I was an outcast that befriended other outcasts like myself. However, because of how I looked, dressed, my mannerisms, and who I hung out with, I was made fun of a LOT when I was a child. Bullied but without anything physical. I was called "Fattany", "Big Bird" and "Know-it-all". Often taunted with the song, “fatty, fatty, 2 x4 couldn't fit through the bathroom door”. I would walk by a group of my peers, hear them whisper and then act as if the ground shook when I walked by. Honestly, I was a chunky child but I was not THAT big to deserve that kind of scrutiny.
I had a group of friends tell me once they didn’t want to be friends with me anymore to my face. It came out of no where and when I asked "why?" they could not provide an explanation. I cried and couldn’t understand what I did. I was in 2nd grade, and along with the abuse I faced at home, this is what triggered my thoughts of no one wanting me around.
Glasses were not a cool thing back when I was younger, although I thought they were pretty cool. I still remember there was a day I was walking home from school, some kid on a bike road next to me and called me four eyes the rest of the way home. Then… the epic braces. The braces that I needed to fix my messed up teeth. Brace face was fun to hear. But by the time I got braces I was in high school. So I was old enough not to entertain the name calling and would often have a witty come back if they tried.
All of it was a series of unfortunate events that was Me. Even though some of what was said hurt, I never let it define me. I had a heart of gold as a child and til this day is something I am so proud of. I would see the brighter side of things, even when no one else could. I remember there were a few friendships I developed because I walked up to the kid that stood alone and said "Hi, Im Brittany!". Out going and out spoken is the kind of person I have always been. There was a lot that little girl went through but never dulled her sparkle.
Due to abuse and general isolation, because I thought no one wanted me around, I spent a lot of time alone. During this time I would read, play on the computer, and practice putting on makeup. I would read Cosmopolitan and Seventeen, see "how to" get a certain makeup look article and practice it. Practice taking my plain ol' face and turning it into a master piece. This practice and this time I had on my hands is the reason I am as good as I am at makeup today. Just like all skills, talent can only take you so far... perseverance and practice is what makes you the best.
It was my senior year of high school when I first starting to come out of my awkward stage. I turned my glasses in for contacts and my hand me down clothes for a better fashion sense. I was finally starting to be recognized by boys and getting some positive attention for the first time in my life. I had my first kiss at 17 years old and I was on cloud 9 because a boy was paying attention to me.
Now here I am, 30 years old, and finally became the woman I wanted to be and wanted to look like. Just like everything, I could use improvements. However, I am comfortable who I am and what I look like. This is me, and no one or nothing can change that. So many people tried to bring me down, and dull my sparkle. No matter how hard they tired, the light within me was shining brighter.
Its part of my life's mission to teach other women to do the same. Other little girls that you are much more than an opinion of a peer. I want to tell them they are beautiful the way they are. I want to show them everything they have to offer in this world. I want to build other woman and girls up.
The Ugly Duckling
The Transformed Swan