When I was fourteen, I decided that my nose was funny looking. Juggling two mirrors, I would examine my profile—and there it was: plain as the funny-looking nose on my face.
Not a movie star nose but a little tipped-up number with no dignity or elegance. How humiliating. So, during most of my ninth grade year I sat in class with my finger holding down the end of my nose. I don’t know whether anyone noticed this odd behavior.
I do know that it didn’t change my nose. And by tenth grade, my nose had been displaced on my list of imperfections. Now I was fretting about the freckles on my face and the braces on my teeth.
I didn’t like my hair, either, which was brown and fine—not blond and thick like the movie stars. It took years, but finally I found some things to like about myself that weren’t in the mirror. And then it happened. I was giving a talk and afterwards a friend asked,
“When did you find out you were pretty?”
I thanked him for the compliment, but I hadn’t found out I was pretty. I had acquired a self and some confidence to go with it. Guess it showed.