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“You sho is ugly” one of the famous quotes from the movie The Color Purple. There are plenty of days that I feel this way. I struggled with my image better yet, I struggled with others perception of me. My dark skin and wide nose were considered flaws in my youth. I have been compared to Whoopi Goldberg (Celie from the color purple) or on my good days Kelly Rowland.  I recall my ex mother in law telling me that I’m like Michelle Obama, not the prettiest but I clean up very well. Don’t be fooled by the Facebook post or my Snap chat pictures because it takes a lot of work to look like that. No, I don’t wake up like this and yes makeup and filters can sometimes be my best friend. It all started at home, I wasn’t girlie enough and my mother reminded me that I would have to be the type to wear makeup to be pretty. I was also told that I would be the type to get married, I was semi cute and very domesticated. I actually believed this because it came from someone who loved me. Only to learn that the words of loved ones stick, even when they can be poisonous. My father Mr. GQ himself, I would cry to, because I adored his skin complexion. I asked him if he thought I was beautiful and he always replied of course. I denied his affirmation because he was my father, he was supposed to tell me that. I was a dark-skinned girl who had the dopest curl pattern hair that was damaged by a relaxer at an early age. To them, I spoke like a “white girl” and had white girl mannerisms. My body type athletic and I envied my cousin because of her curves. I wore training bras in High school, so the girls you see today were non-existent (referring to my boobs). I used to pick my friend like a girl would pick out clothes, whatever looked good to me. Choosing girls that I thought were attractive or what I wish I was, and not by substance. I battled with acne and until my twenties I really didn’t gain my own sense of feminine style. I am far from perfect and societies standards are really making women way too hard on themselves. I am not a bad bitch with a small waist and a big backside, however I have a lot to offer. My skin absorbs the sun and glows just right. My eyes are my best feature personally to me. My athletic tone allows me to be like Janet Jackson. One minute I may pack on a few pounds but when I’m ready I can snatch my skinny body back. Oh and the legs! I hear it all the time, Mrs. Turner, yes Tina you have nothing on me. Over the years, I tried to find ways to enhance myself to prove to others that I wasn’t what they thought I was…UGLY.  I looked in the mirror and fought with myself over the things others used to say, only to realize their opinions didn’t matter. Now when I use my makeup and get dressed, I use that to enhance how I feel inside. I use it as a way to express the person within. There are so many people out here that spend so much money on the surface but not investing in what is within. I have had guys that I was interested in tell me I’m too dark or that my curls were only for the “Spanish women”. No, I do not take you telling me Im “pretty for a dark skin girl” as a compliment either. I recall going to Madrid with some classmates and they were all younger than me. They were all in their junior year, so about early twenties. They stayed in the dorms and were college students, so you could only imagine what their wardrobe consisted of. I was getting ready to go out and got a knock on my hotel door. The girls wanted to come but they weren’t “club” ready. I spent 45 minutes making these girls up. Almost each one of them cried. They did not know they could look like that. I felt like I showed them a side I see in them. Feeling good comes from inside and is portrayed outward. I no longer dress ugliness or emptiness, I enhance and exude the person within. So just in case you were wondering about the glow…#uglyducklingturnedintoswan


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