Imperfection – in things, in people, in places – add character to life. Tell us about an imperfection you cherish.
The words ‘cherish’ and ‘imperfection’, I have to say don’t form much solidarity in my vocabulary. ‘Imperfection’ is usually followed by ‘improve’ and then an attempted radical overhaul of whatever it is that seems to have aroused the mild but fortunately, brief episode of self-loathing. This is coming from the girl who did a critical SWOT analysis of their style – highly methodical with the intention of being practical but at the same time, deeply OTT and another neat acronym, OCD.
Needless to say, our so-called imperfections rarely go noticed by those who hold any relevance in our lives. I see my mother every day and not yet has she ever commented that my face sometimes looks hormonal (puffy, fat, not safe for viewing) – like now – and whatever society deems imperfect usually becomes the inspiration for something beautiful – my friend, Ayesha Jones, is a wonderful example. But the one weird and wonderful imperfection I’ve grown to respect and admire, and I expect a lot of contorted faces after I declare this… so here it is… – stretch marks.
There I said it. I’m smirking just a little bit, by the way, but how well placed that the sunshine was beaming onto my notepad and illuminating the page when I wrote this. My stretch marks – thread-fine and indent various places across my not-very-curvy body. There was a time during puberty when I too despised them. How unfortunate to have these unsightly lines that not even cocoa butter seemed to erase? Breaking out southwards towards my ankles their distinctive tread mark made me self-conscious and weary of wearing my gym skirt. What if the boys laughed at these tears in my skin? Totally rebellious, when they couldn’t be contained by my calves anymore they snaked their way to the backs of my thighs, then dispersed in opposite directions around my hips without apology or warning. An invasion of the worst kind.
Powerless to what mother nature had in store for me and lots of Google ‘How to’ searches later, I think quite simply, I gave up. It wasn’t a huge moment of enlightenment looking at myself in the mirror and hugging my war-town hips but as a woman who appreciates the female form, I started to embrace my stretch marks for what they truly were. Signs of growth and feminine development. I clung onto every line as a display of my coming-of-age; not something to complain about but to celebrate. To look down now they’ve pretty much vanished away but when they return again as reminders of a child, I’ll adore them even more then, than I do now.
What are some of your most cherished imperfections? Please let some be as wacky as mine….