Ugly Duckling Complex

I am me. There is no one else like me… or even close. Sometimes that’s a great thing, sometimes not so much. Either way I am who I am. My tastes are eclectic. I like all forms of music. I like video games. I like to cook and try different types of cuisine. I cross-stitch and knit. I write. I like the taste of Listerine. I have 10 piercings. I have and love tattoos. I smoke Camel Menthol. I can appreciate a nice car or a piece of art. I adore listening to my husband play his guitar. I love playing card/board games with my boys. I even like to go fishing from time to time. Just to name a few things I enjoy. Again, eclectic tastes.

As my 30th approaches, I have found myself looking back over my life. In one respect, I feel like I have not done anything with my life. I haven’t really mastered anything. I’ve had my share of moments when I was actively doing nothing with my life. Hell, I’ve had moments when I was actively destroying my life. That being said, I may not have mastered anything but I’ve enjoyed learning and doing those things. I may not have made a huge impact on the world but I know that I have touched at least some people in one way or another. This epiphany may seem odd to most people but I have struggled with my self-worth and self-esteem for as long as I can remember. I call it the “ugly duckling complex”.

I weighed only 70 pounds going into 7th grade. This was when they had finally diagnosed me and started treatment for my Crohn’s and PSC. They put me on steroids, Sulfasalazine, and a few other meds that I don’t even remember. 16 pills all total each day. So, the beginning of 7th grade I’m underweight and frail looking and a few months in I have an oddly chubby face from the steroids and I’m pale as a ghost from the sulfa drugs since you’re supposed to limit your sun exposure. Then on top of that, the emergency trips to the restroom that I didn’t want to explain to my peers. To say the very least, I was picked on tremendously. This went on until high school. By that time, I had finally starting looking like a young woman and had my health under control for the most part. I, however, still struggled with my self-perception. I carried myself as if I didn’t care what the world thought of me but I secretly detested what I saw in the mirror. It wasn’t until a good friend of mine pulled me to the side one day and asked if I knew how beautiful I was. I, of course, denied such nonsense. He then requested that I go home and stare in the mirror until I saw what he and everyone around me saw. I did just that.

Now, over the years I’ve had my difficulties with how I feel about myself. It’s to be expected given my rough start in becoming a teenager and all the obstacles I’ve had to face since. But because of those things I appreciate the little things in life and the compliments I’m given. It really doesn’t take much to make me smile. I am not perfect but all the BS is what made me who I am today and overall, I think I’ve grown into a very nice swan.


**Listening to OneRepublic**

2 Responses to “Ugly Duckling Complex”
  1. I completely agree about your becoming a lovely swan! -Dana

Scarecrow can't do ALL the thinking...

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