I knew I was ugly when I was 8 years old.

The notion started in school when one of the popular girls tripped me in the playground. Those girls would laugh at me, call me a tomboy, and scream that no one will ever want to be my friend. At the same token, I would come home and be told to behave and dress a certain way so that other people will like me. It’s no surprise that as a child, these messages were so confusing and it made me think:

Is being who I am such a bad thing?

“You’re too weird Kim. No one is going to like weird people.”

Since being myself wasn’t the best choice, I told myself that I needed to change. I started wearing dresses and hanging out in the same crowds as the popular girls. My youth was just a never ending cycle of trying to be this perfect person that everyone wanted me to be. It worked for the most part, but I was miserable! I had all the friends in the world, but I wasn’t happy at all and I couldn’t understand why.

That’s when I became an addict.

I started drinking to numb that empty feeling. Once I was sober, the unhappy feeling would come back so I made another drink. There were nights where I downed an entire bottle of wine by myself. The feeling of not being happy with who I am was so overpowering, it ruled everything. Until one day I decided I couldn’t live like this anymore.

Now is my chance: a clean slate. I started going to therapy, exercising, and writing. I stopped going to parties where alcohol and drugs were around. Instead I would stay in my apartment, alone with my cats. My friends at the time stopped calling me. They no longer invited me to places because I wasn’t “fun” anymore.

I started replacing alcohol with books.

My library grew with books from self-help, art, poetry, psychology, fantasy, and philosophy. Every night instead of pouring a glass of wine, I’d open a book. Even though I was burning bridges with the people around me, I felt in my bones that this was something I needed to do. And after tons of reading and being in solitude, it finally hit me!

I realized what the problem was.

For years, I wanted permission to be who I am…but the only permission I ever needed was MY OWN! I was so fearful that no one would love my weird ways. But this is such a false belief. The only way you can ever be happy in your life is if you give yourself permission to be you. No one has control of how you should live your life except you.

As a culture, we let outside influences dictate our every move. Sometimes we don’t even know it because it’s so ingrained. We always want to be in the loop that we unknowingly let other people tell us what to do! Think about it: our society tells us how to live, eat, sleep, drink, dress, all for the hopes of being loved. And we do it thinking it will make us happy, only to be disappointed. If you really want to be happy and loved:

It’s time to start falling in love with you!

We need to understand that unless we have a loving relationship with ourselves, nothing in this world will make us happy. You will always be disappointed. That’s why addicts do what they do: to find the feeling of being happy. You’re absolutely amazing just the way you are! You’re unique as hell, you have stories to tell, and a life to live. Don’t wait for other people to give you the freedom to live.

Don’t give them that power. Reclaim it!

Start building your relationship with yourself. This might mean cutting people out of your life. It also might mean to put yourself FIRST and others second. And that’s okay! Seriously if you don’t love who you are, what makes you think someone else will love you? We only have one life so stop living for other people and start living for you my love!

I hope this blog was helpful to you! Leave a comment below and let me know what you think. Also if you like this post, make sure you share it with friends and family.

Til next time,

Photo by Avi Richards on Unsplash

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