I stand in the bathroom – stark naked – and stare at myself in the mirror. I could tell you all the things I find wrong in my body but I won’t. Not because it would take me a day, but because I choose not to. That is a new resolution I’ve put upon myself—to not let my “imperfections” affect the way I live anymore.
I turn around, and there it is. My stretch marks. The biggest contender of them all.
In retrospect, I did not even know why I hated them so much. Does it really look hideous? Does it do me any harm? Who sets the standards that it is not considered beautiful?
It is so easy for me to see the best in others and to find beauty in utter chaos and yet I couldn’t find the same in me.
I did everything I could to remove them or at least hope to see some improvements. And when I finally realized that I couldn’t change them, I just decided to change the way I look at them.
Instead of regarding them as something “dirty”, I see them as a sign of strength—from gaining muscles and building a healthy routine.
They’re a sign of growth—from a small, naive girl to a strong woman who is out to conquer the world.
They are a sign of life given to a newborn baby. Why would you be ashamed of that?
They are a sign of change—each minute you improve. Each minute you are a whole better person than you were before.
Don’t you realize how beautiful that is?
We need to normalize stretch marks because that’s how they are supposed to be seen—normal. Not a flaw but an art. A story. A part of life. A part of someone.
Tiger stripes, battle scars, or whatever you call them. They’re a sign that you are out there making developments each day. You grow bigger, you gain experiences, you grow wiser.
If you can’t change your “imperfections” (stressing on the quotation marks), then you have two things left to do: you ignore it or just learn to live with it. For me, I chose to live with it. And by living with it, I was finally able to regard its beauty.
I love my stretch marks because they know my stories and they show my growth. I love my stretch marks because they are a part of me. And I freakin’ love myself.