Learning to love myself and my big beautiful nose

I grew up in an environment where everyone was described by their flaws. For me, it was my nose and my lips. It was always pointed out to me how big my nose is. I was given the nickname “Nosa”, and jokes like “I bet if someone farts, you’d be the first to smell it” were a constant feature of my childhood.

Being an introvert and constantly being body-shamed would have easily pushed me to depression so I had to learn to crack jokes and laugh at myself too as a coping mechanism. I would even cheer them on when they made those unnecessary jokes.

I got so self-conscious about the size of my nose that I started looking for ways to hide or distract from my nose. I started growing out my hair in hopes that when people would see me, they would see the hair and not notice my nose. But it didn’t stop the bullying. After that, I started wearing glasses. I picked out the biggest frames I could find, hoping they would do the trick. Still, the bullying continued.

It also affected me relationship-wise because I would ask myself “who would want to date someone with a nose as big as mine or lips like mine?”. But I found love and love found me.

It’s been years since that point in my life and over time I have learned to fall in love with myself. I have taken the conscious decision to ignore what everyone else says because I be spec naah! E mi gaan “hot cake”!