When I was a little girl, I wanted to be astronaut. And a ballerina. And a movie star. And the president. I imagine we all wanted these things at one time or another during our childhoods. But one thing that you probably were not hoping to become was beautiful. Because in a way you thought you already were. But as we grew older, this desire of perfection became more and more of an obsession than a quality. Mirrors in our homes morphed into circus mirrors, distorted our perception of ourselves so much that this image became printed on the insides of our eyelids. It begged to be both noticed and hidden. The desire to be perfect does not come from our human instinct of self improvement, but rather from the pressure society is putting on us to be someone we are not. We became our own monsters under the bed, in our closets, in our nightmares. We crawled into bed with ourselves, watching the sleeping shell that hid our shriveling personas, brushing back the wisp of hair that fell across our face, both amazed and disgusted with ourselves. 

I remember an activity I did in preschool. We each had a clear glass of water and a bottle of food coloring. One drop at a time, we watched the color swirl with the water, until the water became the color, and the color became the water. I think our society is the same way. We are the water and society is slowly swirling inside us, overpowering, encompassing all that we are. It drowns out the person we once were, and when the color and water were completely mixed, we could not tell one from the other. If we let this distorted image of what beauty is supposed to be, we will lose ourselves in the process of finding it. 
As children, we are brainwashed by the images we see on screens, on glossed pages, plastered on the dirty city walls. We are deafened by ads for weight loss regimens and how to get tanner, why your boyfriend doesn't love you and how to fix it, how to hate yourself for something you can't change. We are taught that stomachs were made for tucking, eyebrows for plucking, breasts for enlarging, lips for fake smiling, eyes for real tears, bodies for exploitation. But we were not created for this. As humans, we are sent to this world to love, to cherish, to connect with one another. Everyday should not be an uphill climb on a never ending hill, we should not be beaten down by others who feel hatred for themselves in their own hearts, we should love who we are and flaunt that. But instead, scars are created and covered up, tears are shed and immediately dried, evil thoughts take root in the soil of self worth and we allow the world to water them and let them grow in the shadow of pain. And we take them and put them in a box labeled "danger. Do not touch. This is me. Beware of owner." And we stick this box under our beds because no one can see it and we don't want them to. Or maybe we do. 
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