When I walked along the shore of the ocean last week, I marveled at the majestic presence it has. The sea is one of mystery and adventure. It holds many dangers and answers to questions that many of us don’t know or understand. When I look at how the waves come crashing down, I don’t think about the science behind what I see. I think about the beautiful imperfections that the waves bestow on the land. No wave is the same. The tide is constantly changing and evolving, and the same principle applies to our lives. The beach has stories of beauty and tragedy. Maybe the physical attributes make me think of the beautiful imperfections that I can see with my eyes but not register in my brain. In many ways, I believe those viewings can be true in many areas of our lives.
In the world of self-storage, many items provide a sense of beauty. I’ve seen people store just about everything you can imagine. Some people might say that they keep a lot of junk, and there is some truth, but overall, people store memories and moments in time that they wish they could freeze. I have customers who tell me about the beautiful imperfections in their store furniture or the scrapbooks where pages are falling out. It’s not about the item itself. It’s about what those items represent to them and how those things make people feel. There is no perfect memory. But memories, objects, people, and other things all have imperfections. Some are more visible than others.
When I look at myself, I think back to twenty years ago when the weight accumulated. I think about the stresses throughout my life that made me turn to comfort food and excuses. All I could see were the freckles, weight, and moles I didn’t like. I couldn’t see that my imperfections were beautiful because they didn’t make me who I am. Only how we feel about ourselves can we show who we are because we change every day and every minute. I saw my cheeks get fatter and my stomach look like I was pregnant. When I decided that I could love myself, I could work on my attitude and my body.
Animals are another example of beautiful imperfections. If an animal has a disability, do you think they are ugly? If so, why? Are you so vain that you can’t see them as valuable as a person with a disability? One of my friends has a cat without an eye. She’s beautiful. Another friend has a dog that can barely walk. He’s inspirationally beautiful. No matter what we see that isn’t our idea of perfect, there is beauty in all facets of life. Sure, it may not be the typical perception of what others consider ideal, but beautiful imperfections make life a little more special. There is a reality to flaws. The marks that we see are a mirror of change. Those changes are a reality that can elevate our acceptance and tolerance to things that don’t look the way we want.
I’ve seen children with scars so deep that others saw those marks as pathetic. The children saw them as their badges of courage and honor. It’s incredible what perception can do because we view the world with new lenses when we alter our definition of beauty. Children tend to bounce back better than adults. It’s only when other people get into their heads and make them feel inferior that their views change. The world talks about being different, and the stark reality is that the world wants people to accept those who don’t look or do things the same way as others, as long as it’s what the world thinks is acceptable. The truth is that everything has beauty in it. We’re all different, and each of us has beautiful imperfections. The key is accepting each other for who and what we are and learning to respect the differences.
I’ve seen so much ugliness in the world with the way groups have little to no tolerance for each other in the last few years. But the beauty lies in separating the mess into beautiful acts of helping society be better together. Sometimes those beautiful imperfections turn into something better. As you prepare for the day, remember to see the flaws around you and their beauty because everything has the potential for incredible beauty. Perception is everything. When you are willing to look beyond the marks and see what lies beneath, the world becomes even more beautiful along the way. Have a great day, everyone.