At 17 years old life has been shaped and guided by the authoritative figures in my home and school. Thus far, I haven’t really established any life structuring beliefs or philosophical concepts to share with the world. I do however have extremely hairy legs, which I can safely say are rarely overlooked yet in their own way, beautiful.
From the moment I was conceived, I was doomed to a life of dulled razors. Because both my parents are from northern Europe, I inherited special traits unique to that region; traits that, in the wilderness, would help me survive against icy winters, but in today’s “standards” are quite embarrassing.
When I was 12 years old, I can remember my classmates measuring the length of my leg hair with a ruler, having to turn it over from centimeters to inches. I remember when girls shaved a thick patch off my shin while I was sleeping, and I remember not noticing until the day after. I also remember, asking Mom if there was a special surgery that could electrify all the hairs until they fell off; although I soon got my answer when Dad pranced around the house in his favorite pair of short shorts and told me how closely we resembled each other. From the looks of his legs, no such surgery would ever be able rid his legs of hair; I quickly gave up the thought and let my leg hairs grow. Today, the tips of my leg hairs have split ends and I can comfortably wear shorts in the middle of January.
In a society like ours where everyday we see images of perfect bodies, it’s hard not to feel insecure. We forget that our bodies don’t own us; we own our bodies. Everyone has experienced their share of physical problems, some more apparent than others. What I have come to terms with is what matters most are not the muscles that shape my skin, but the morals that shape my soul. I am what I am beyond my looks, the size of my house, the clothes I wear. I am the words I speak, the doors I open, the friends I listen too. The actions I take will roar louder than any car I drive. My body is simply a tool to walk me through life. I respect it but never do I fantasize over it.
I believe beauty is more than just physical appearance. My bone structure reveals nothing about who I am as a person. In some people’s eyes, I came into this world with an assortment of “flaws.” I have eyebrows bushy enough for birds to nest in and pinkies that curve at 90 degree angles. I have an upper lip that seemed to forget itself inside my mother’s womb and oversized calf muscles that make people pity my feet. My chest is concaved and my nose humps like camels back.
But, I love everything about the way I look. It gives me style; a uniqueness familiar to no one but me. My legs are beautiful. I can say with no ego, no matter what I do or what I become, I will always love who I am.
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