Sometime beauty needs a little boostWhen I was young, I never thought I was beautiful. Wherever I went, people said I looked responsible, smart, sometimes handsome. But when it came to comments about my eyes, the curve of my lip or shiny hair, there were none. I was never really disappointed about this; I just accepted it as a fact about who I was.
So it wasn’t a big surprise when in my freshman year of college, I wasn’t the most popular girl at social gatherings. I already knew that men mostly liked the thin, coy girls with long, straight hair. In my head, I had developed the thought that if I were to succeed, it wouldn’t be because of my face.
Then I met him. I don’t even remember his name, but he changed things for me. One Sunday morning on the subway, a young man tapped my hand and left a short note with his number before scurrying off the train. I thought it was stupid, but my friends pressed me to see him.
He turned out to be a really shy student studying English literature. He could sing very well, could carry on a decent conversation, and most of all, thought I was beautiful.
Although I met him only two times, it was as if he broke the ice for me. After that, I learned that perhaps the whole world didn’t think I was beautiful, but some people did ― and that was what mattered.
I firmly disagree with the saying “Beauty is only skin deep.” More factors than just appearance make up beauty. Beauty is about who someone is, what he or she has done, what he thinks. These are the things that show on a person’s face.
People say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I think this means beauty is seen by those who choose to see.
Koreans are especially sensitive about appearance. Comedians joke about people with short legs, fat people and bald people very openly on public television. The media tries to teach us who is beautiful and who is not.
Gardeners say that talking to flowers and telling them that they are beautiful has a positive effect. Saying “I love you” to someone reminds and assures that person of one’s love.
Being told you are beautiful not only makes you feel good, but has a physical effect on you as well. Those who aren’t told that they are beautiful are never going to be beautiful ― and that can affect self-confidence and pleasure in life.
Going back to the boy on the subway, I know he didn’t think I was beautiful because of my soul, because he didn’t even know me. However, I believe he saw a glimpse of my inner qualities reflected on my face. Whatever it was, he made a difference in my life. I realized that I could be beautiful too. Maybe not like a super model, but in my own way.
Take the time to tell someone, “You are beautiful.” It may not seem like much, but those three words have the power to change someone’s life. Make them beautiful.
by Wohn Dong-hee
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