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My Kind of Beautiful

By October 13, 2017December 5th, 2023Awareness, NF1, Story of NF

By Angela Velasquez

I have an atypical face; my face is not symmetrical. When I am out in public, strangers tend to look at me with a puzzled gaze. They stare because I have a facial disfigurement due to neurofibromatosis. My right eye, which is a prosthetic, protrudes out and overall the right side of my face is slightly lower than that of my left. So, yes, my face is atypical which causes for a lot of wondering eyes.

It has taken me years to feel comfortable in my skin and to consider myself beautiful. I used to believe the bullies that called me a monster and ugly because at the end of the day, I too thought I was ugly because I did not look like everyone else. I thought that to be beautiful; I had to have two perfect eyes, a symmetrical face and be NF free.

Unfortunately, I went through many years of self-hate and tears before I defined my kind of beauty. I thought that I would never find love because of the way I looked. I thought I would not do much in life because people would just concentrate on my face and not on who I am as a person. Thankfully, I was wrong because I found love, I have a successful career, and I am enjoying every second of life.

I know that no matter how many surgeries I have my face will never be typical but that does not mean I am not beautiful. I am finally comfortable in my skin, and I am not afraid to show my scars because they, too, are beautiful.

A version of this article ran on The Mighty, a site where people share their personal experiences with disability and disease. To read more from Angela, visit her blog Life with Neurofibromatosis.