This I Believe

Tiffany - Orem, Utah
Entered on May 23, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
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Beauty is as Beauty Does

I‘ve had it again and again–the sneezing, itching, runny and stuffy nose. Oh the horror! I recall curling up in my cold bed with a three-foot pile of tissues stacked not far from my arm’s reach where I had lazily tossed them. I was miserable. Would I have survived without my tissues? Probably, but at the time I didn’t think so.

I believe in the beauty of tissues. Now normally tissues aren’t considered to be in the category of beautiful. Their purpose is to carry gross specimens from the body’s nasal passages, or whatever else is unwanted. These items make a tissue look or seem ugly, but the truth is, the tissue’s purpose is so vital that it becomes “beautiful.” In fact, in some cases I may be in such need of a tissue that I will reuse an older one. It’s wonderful to have a tissue when it is needed. In the way of the tissue, beauty is not a visual trait; it is a level of quality. I believe this is the same with people: I believe you are only ugly if you choose to be.

Often, popular teen magazines judge by looks; whoever is born with the best outer features wins. However, ultimately superiority is not based upon looks, but rather acts and attitudes. The tables are then turned and the one rated the “ugliest,” who may be the kindest, is chosen over the teen model.

For example, Mahatma Gandhi’s external features were that of a shriveled little man; yet he is a role model to many due to his great belief in peace and his perseverance to nationalize that belief. Stephen Hawking is known for his brilliance in physics and currently holds Isaac Newton’s old job at Cambridge University. However, his body is twisted in such a way that he is wheelchair-bound. His outer features certainly don’t resemble those of teen models, but his personality and mind make him great. Another world renowned person, Mother Theresa, is celebrated for her charity; nevertheless, even her features could be described as homely. It was their choices and accomplishments that determined how others viewed them, and they became beautiful.

I am certainly not as great as any of the above people–in my job at a retirement home, I sit at a desk and answer phones all day. However, I love it! The residents don‘t judge me by my looks, but by my personality. Almost every day I go I get told, “You’re cute.” It flatters me that I can be a good enough person that they would say such a thing.

The tissue is not something hailed for its visual splendor, but it continues to be something appreciated and liked–for it “decided” to be beautiful through its acts. How will I decide to look today? After all, I am only ugly if I choose to be.