I met Sami freshman year in college during French class. I first noticed her sense of style—most importantly her array of cute booties she would pare with multi-colored tights. Sami was a joy to have in French class, not only was she incredibly smart, she was down to earth and funny. Sami has this extraordinary personality–it lights up an entire room. It makes people feel safe, and at ease. Sami has always been gentle with me. She’s always been honest. She’s always been a pleasure to be around. Sami I love the way your face lights up when you smile. I love your beautiful doe-like eyes. I love your laugh. I love that I get to live in a world where people like you exist. Thank you for your vulnerability. Thank you for sharing.
I’ve started this series because through my own self acceptance search/journey I’ve realized that we, as humans, all have problems with our skin suit no matter what it looks like. The point of this series is to confront our flaws AND to highlight our excellence. I hope one day we’ll all be able to wake up and that voice in our mind which lists all our faults on repeat will be much quieter if not silent. The mirror will be less scary. We’ll smile as we pass our gorgeous selves. We’ll have a bounce in our steps. One day we’ll love our bodies exactly as they are right now. We might have bad days . We might have bad weeks. Yet once we unlock that key, that key of self love we’ll know we can get back to a sanctuary within our bodies. Our bodies and our selves are waiting for that love, waiting for that permission to just be. As I said to Sami, (and as I say to all my future spotlights), be gentle with yourself, you are meeting parts of yourself that you have been at war with.
1. What makes you feel beautiful?
Learning to love myself. Not being afraid to look in the mirror and say, “You are beautiful. You are enough.” Looking at my body and accepting all of my flaws as part of what makes me, me, has helped me look at myself in a positive light. And, of course, evenly-winged eyeliner with a bold lip.
2. What makes you feel powerful?
3. What would you tell your past self about beauty and bodies?
Oh, where even to begin. I want to hug and hold my past self’s feelings of beauty and self-worth. I would tell her to embrace herself as she is, that bodies are an ever-changing entity, and to enjoy being healthy and strong along the journey. Numbers do not define your identity, and stop surrounding yourself with people who think otherwise.
4. How does your skin color make you feel?
Self-aware. Of my priviledge, of my paleness, of the flaws that stand out because I’m so white. I recognize that my skin color means I will never truly understand what it means to be judged because of it. This often leaves me feeling guilty, ashamed, and angry at those who hold this mentality. Sometimes I’m self-conscious of my skin color as I am told on many occasions that I look “dead” or that I need to go out in the sun more. But hey, fuck those people, right?
5. How have you struggled with your body?
How haven’t I struggled with my body? Ever since I was 13, I have struggled with my self-image. I developed an eating disorder in middle school that has taken years upon years to break from those dark, negative thoughts. It took a long time for me to feel comfortable eating in front of people as I was so ashamed of my body to the point I felt my eating habits would be scrutinized. But why? We put so much pressure on young girls to be human enough to see and feel but not enough to be one. I have compared my body to others for so long instead of accepting my body and body type as enough. It’s a daily struggle even still, but I am who I am, and that will never change. I may never be Kate Moss, but I am a damn good Sami Waight.
6. Complete this sentence… “In my body is a safe place to be because….”
“In my body is a safe place to be because….” I am enough. I am beautiful. I am deserving of positive self-esteem.
From Sami, with love.