Nov 13, 2020 | By: Monica Grimes Portrait Design/Carroll McKenzie
Being a dark-skinned woman from India, I come from a culture where the standard of beauty was lighter skin and male children were given all the privileges. I never liked beauty, but I was fortunate to be raised by non-Orthodox parents who treated me as an equal with males. Still, my culture outside the home required me to be smart and prove myself every opportunity I could get. It's only after I embraced myself the way I am that I started feeling beautiful and finding beauty in others. I'm thankful for all the life lessons, easy or tough, that made me a stronger person. I can very confidently say today that I think I'm beautiful in every sense. I may not feel it all the time but I know I am. On days when I don't feel confident I look at myself how others look at me and I feel confident again. Today I love my stretch marks, I love my imperfections and I know I'm the priority and not an option or a backup plan.
My mother is my hero. She taught me things I would like to share with other women. Never doubt yourself. You're a woman and that alone makes you darn incredible. You are unique, you're exotic, and you should believe it when someone says you're beautiful.
Beauty can't be defined in words. It's diverse, inclusive, both personal and general. Anything that brings a smile to your face and light in your eyes is beautiful to me.
My confidence and finding positivity in everything are my favorite non-physical features. When you can touch someone else's life you feel pretty powerful.