“I know honey, all I’m saying is that you’re not putting yourself out there. I just don’t want you to end up alone.”
Cam, was close to tears listening to her mother ramble on at the other end of the phone. It was the same damn thing every time… and she wondered why Cam never called.
“I know mom.” She croaked. “I have to go now. I’ll see you next week.”
Hanging up the phone, she stood in silence determining wether she has time to give all this a good cry or just suck it up and move on with her day. Without a decision having been made the tears glided over her rosy cheeks and down to her chin. Of course Cam didn’t put herself out there. She felt she had nothing to give in the first place.
Cam woke every morning believing in new beginnings, in fresh starts. So she brewed her much desired black coffee and rolled out her yoga mat. She felt determined. Like all the beautiful women in her fitness magazines, she would wake up early every morning and start the day with a rejuvenating yoga work-out, that was to calm her spirit and ease her flow throughout the day. Not to mention the supposed lean toned body she would have 8 weeks from now. Little did she know that by the end of the day that determination would have dwindled into an oozing black heap of self-hate and uncertainty.
It would start with a glance in the mirror. What Cam saw was not what others saw. What she saw made her heart hurt. And no matter how hard she tried, whatever products she used, or outfits she changed, she would never be satisfied. Everyday she would walk through that oozing black heap and carry the feeling with her wherever she went.
People saw it on her. They noticed her confidence was nonexistent and used her for it. She wouldn’t talk back. She wouldn't keep eye contact. That shy, ugly, little thing was nothing to them. In a society of go getters the timid were eaten alive, left to feel worse as time went on.
It progressed out in civilisation as she surrounded herself with what she thought were beautiful people. Billboards ten stories high reminding you that if you purchased the new MAC Bold & Bad Lash, your life would truly be perfection. She watched as petit women with bouncy lush hair grabbed the attention of most men. (This too made her chest tighten, for she was never worth a glance.) She caught herself looking at men, wishing for just one fleeting look from their side and maybe, just maybe she could change their minds, but…those looks never came.
She was lonely and it was all her fault. She didn’t deserve happiness or love. She is ugly. She is fat. She was too short. She did it to herself. Why couldn’t she stop eating. Start exercising. Know how to talk to people. Know how to plaster on make-up perfectly and make her hair look like those flawless women she saw out in the city everyday.
These were the thoughts that overpowered Cam’s mind. A kind of poison that permeated her brain. Slowly killing her inner most thoughts, leaving behind an injurious empty soul. That’s what she was, empty. As a child she always thought of the monsters under her bed, but just like back then they are still in her head.
By the end of the day she moved through the people , numb to the masses. A face in the crowd of muted intelligence. Just wanting to be home. Away from it all. It only made her feel worse. All day they have taken a piece of her, and without knowing it completely, she let them. She would convince herself to start fresh tomorrow and flow through the same routine until she wearily gave up. Nothing was going to help her now. The only person that could save her was her.
It was summer and Cam trudged zombielike from home to work and home again. Climbing the subway stairs, she kept her gaze low, thinking this would keep her out of sight. It had started to rain and as she rounded the corner walking swiftly, having forgotten her umbrella, she never saw him coming. She pinched her eyes closed as she collided with what felt like a brick wall. In shock she fell backwards onto the wet pavement, the rain had not shown any mercy or proof that it was going to let up. She was soaked through and through, but managed to catch herself as to not cause too much damage coming in contact with the ground.
“Oh shit. Are you alright miss?”
Cam glanced up and stared into the face of a concerned man. His eyes were on hers. He saw her. He looked. Not in any romantic way. Just in a way that reminded her that she was human too. Just like the rest. He stretched out his hand and Cam hesitantly took it. As he helped her up, he asked again:
“Are you alright?”
Cam did not answer. She blinked profusely and pushed past him, running the last two blocks home. Breathing heavily, she felt different. Something was different. She was smiling. She was smiling in the rain, her heart racing and without even realising it she ran past her front door. She kept running. She was alive. She had been doubting it for months, but she was alive.
Todays society likes to play the authoritative role of mediating what we should look and what we should be like. It’s almost rebellious actually liking who you are. Self-love has become so incredibly hard because comparison is inevitable. We scroll through pictures of peoples perfect lives and we compare ours to theirs. Depression sets in more easily. We compete by posting pictures where we pretend to be just as happy as everyone else. Little do we know that most of those smiles are forced. That the more you post the unhappier you are. The more you need that instant gratification of complete strangers linking your post. Did you know that perfect couple with the expensive clothes are on the verge of breaking up? The guy surrounded by all his buddies is actually lonely? The girl posing in her bra to show off her ribs actual thinks she overweight?
It's a vicious cycle we have gotten ourselves into. Everyone has their own shit and we have become desensitised to it. To seeing it. To noticing it.
So why do we judge? Why do we let people judge us? Or more importantly, why do we care when they do?In the end isn't it the same moon we look up to and wish to, with no reply?
You. Are. Beautiful.
-written by ActressInReality