Category Archives: Bold Beauty of the Month

August’s Bold Beauty: Burned Beauty
Aug 01 2016

Meet Karli
BBM Karli
 I was attacked twice in 2006. The first time I was attacked by a group of guys while in my parking garage. They beat me and stuffed me into the trunk of my car. Fortunately I was able to escape by jumping out  of the trunk while the car was in motion. The second attack came just two months later when I was held at gunpoint by two women and assaulted with acid. Unfortunately this attack left me with third degree full-thickness burns to more than 30% of my body. As a result, I spent six and a half weeks in the intensive care burn unit at University of Chicago Hospital and I’ve endured over 15 surgeries. I came to find out that all of this because of the guy I was dating at the time. He was involved in the streets and instead of whoever was upset with him retaliating against him they retaliated against me. It was devastating and incredibly traumatizing to say the least.
 BBM Karli
My journey has been a long and arduous one. While I’m in a much better place now it took me a long time to find happiness, peace, and to truly embrace my identity as a burn survivor. At first I didn’t know how I would go on. I couldn’t see a future for myself and the loss of my identity was unbearable. I literally went to sleep one person and woke up another. Over time, I embraced my scars or “flaws” (as some call them) as something that make me uniquely beautiful. They are a part of who I am and I almost don’t remember life before them. Instead of viewing them as something negative, they are a constant reminder that I am a survivor and that I’m incredibly blessed to be here.
 
I developed a t-shirt to make a statement about how I feel about myself. I call it my MORE beautiful tee.http://www.burnedbeauty.com/about-karli/more-beautiful/  I am always thankful when people compliment me by saying, “You’re STILL beautiful despite your scars,” but I think my ability to overcome adversity, my fears, and my past make me MORE beautiful. And that applies to all women. I actually have a greater sense of self and more self-confidence with my scars because they aren’t an insecurity. And I think it surprises people that I am happy and confident. If I can show just one young lady that you can be burned and beautiful and confident, then I’ve fulfilled my purpose. Despite it all, I find comfort in knowing that I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be and I wouldn’t change a thing.

Are YOU interested in being a BOLD Beauty of The Month? Email bareboldbeauties@gmail.com to find out how! 

Bold Beauty of the Month

August’s Bold Beauty: Lazy Eye
Aug 01 2014

Meet Mays BBM: Shawna

 I love every inch of me and no matter what anybody says or thinks , I know God created me just the way I am . I used to hate myself and I tried to commit suicide at 15. I hated every inch of me. My “lazy eye” reared its ugly head late in my life.  I didn’t understand it at all. My family would say to me “you look tired. ” One day my husband let me know one of my eyes looked really small . I didn’t believe him until I started paying attention when I was tired or taking pictures.  I was like “this makes me look really old.”  I hated it.  I felt so self-conscious in my late twenties, I struggled with looking older, growing older, and the lazy eye made it worse. I would say to myself “you are done, you had your youth and it’s over”.  My lazy eye made me feel so ugly.  People my whole life told me I was gorgeous, pretty, and sexy.  I NEVER believed any of it.  My dad always says “my beautiful daughter “every time he sees me. I still didn’t believe it. My lazy eye made me hate photos. Even though I took photos I would really come down hard on the photo and want to do it over.   I have grown to love myself because I met The Lord Jesus Christ. He loved me first and through Him I learned to love myself. I love my lazy eye, I love my face,  I love my attitude, I love my style, I love every hoc about me.  I couldn’t say that before; I would cry tears. Now I cry tears of joy, I cry tears of change. I am ME and I am here. I have more to my story ,but stay tuned it’s coming………………….

Ladies please please don’t give up, learn to love yourself. Step by step accept little nuggets of knowledge when given to you and open your heart and mind to the beauty that is you. Run free and embrace your everything. God doesn’t make mistakes, you are who you are because He said so.

Bold Beauty of the Month

July’s Bold Beauty: Vitiligo
Jul 02 2014

                   July Bold Beauty Pat July Bold Beauty 

Meet July’s BBM: Pat

I have had the auto immune condition vitiligo for over 30 years. I am now 60 years young. Prior to having vitiligo, I had another auto immune condition called sarcoidosis, which causes pockets of inflammation in the body. My doc put me on steroids (Prednisone). I decided that I was not going to stay on them long. I weaned myself off Prednisone and the sarcoidosis went in to remission. Meanwhile, my immune system was covertly destroying my pigment cells. I say covertly because it started in an area on my body where I did not look that often. Or should I say almost never? A friend recommended a dermatologist to me and off I went.

It was a terrible experience. He was very insensitive. I told him I thought I had the same thing that Michael Jackson has. I showed him the “area” and he seemed so annoyed. He yelled at me and said “Oh please you have a fungus everybody is trying say they have what Michael has!” and gave me fungal cream. I was so embarrassed and left with the fungal cream hidden in my bag. Needless to say the fungal cream did not work. A tiny white spot began widening under my left eye. It would appear, color back in disappear then reappear. Vitiligo does that. This began to happen all over my body. It was as if vitiligo was playing a sadistic game of peek -a -boo with me. The spots decided to find each other and merge into big patches. No more peek- a- boo. They came out of hiding with a vengeance. I went to other dermatologists, tried different treatments ,but nothing worked permanently. Also, my health plan would not pay for most of the treatments because they were considered cosmetic. So I decided to stop all treatment and let nature take its course. Vitiligo is such an ironic condition for me. I always loved my Mom’s beautiful dark chocolate complexion and wished I was darker. Now, I am turning white. I have two little grand nieces who are so curious about my skin. The oldest always asks why I am white turning brown. The other asks why I am brown turning white. It is interesting how they each have a different perspective. One day, the next to the oldest girl asked me why I was two colors for the hundredth time. I finally told her God could not decide what color to make me.

I only went to familiar places where I was known. When I did go out there was always elaborate planning around it. Check two and three times to make sure my make up bag was in my purse. Turtle necks and long sleeves in the winter. I always dreaded and suffered in the summer. I would wear short sleeve mock turtle necks and sometimes long sleeves. I was hesitant to meet new people. I only went out with people who were used to me. Of course I didn’t wear make up in the house. So I always dreaded answering the door for deliveries. I would never run down to get the mail without putting make up on. If I went to family gatherings and stayed over I would drive my sisters crazy constantly asking if they invited friends or is just family coming in the morning. I made myself and those around me crazy.

The BUT. I came across something online a while back that caught my attention. The article asked how big your but is. It went on to say how we let our buts stop us from living life to the fullest or being the best person that we can be. For me vitiligo was my biggest but. I had so many little buts because of vitiligo that they merged together to become one big ole but.

Here were some of my buts.

I wanted to go to Barbados for a family reunion but I am spotted and didn’t want to be seen in a bathing suit. I was going to join my friends mambo/tango class but I sweat too much and my make up will rub off on my dance partner. I wanted to join this new gym but the people don’t know me there and might stare.  Believe it or not my biggest but which is vitiigo has been a kind of safety net and a prison for me. Vitiligo was my but for so long I got comfortable being uncomfortable. What are some of your buts in life? We need to take a long hard look at those buts. We need to exercise with determination, strength, resolve and prayer. Exercise until we control our buts , get them in shape and make sure they don’t keep us from achieving happiness and living our best life. After that conference I was determined to no longer let the big old vit but keep me in a holding pattern. I stopped wearing the make-up, stopped wearing turtle necks and went out into the world bare bold and beautiful.

There is a positive to having vitiligo. It makes you unforgettable. I am still a work in progress trying to achieve some level of comfort in my patterned skin, but thank you to all the bare bold beauties for inspiring me and letting me know I am not taking this journey alone.

 Are YOU interested in being featured as a Bold Beauty of the Month? Read how to apply by clicking>>> HERE

Bold Beauty of the Month

May’s Bold Beauty: Weight Battle
May 06 2014

WEBSITE PIC[1]

Meet Mays BBM: April

Greetings, I am writing to enlighten you a little bit about my personal story. I am a 29 year old business owner and a woman of great confidence and poise.  The strange thing about my life is that I have not always been as confident and accepting of myself as I am now.  At the age  of 12 years old is when I started to have thoughts and feelings of lack of self worth which caused me to have suicidal tendencies and  started to suffer from depression, though I suffered in silence for the majority of my life.   I shied away from mirrors and pictures because I did not like the person that I  was looking at in the mirror because I was not looking at her through my own eyes, I was looking at her through the eyes of society and their standards of what true beauty is.  Having this lack of self esteem caused me to go on numerous diets trying to lose weight and some of them even jeopardized my health and caused me to get sick.  I was determined to be the perfect sized woman that the world would accept.  I crash dieted for years and due to being so unhappy with myself, I began to participate in emotional eating. Food became my new best friend. It made me feel so good but yet the effects of it was so bad later.  When I was told by doctor that my weight was causing me to have significant heath problems, I stopped eating and men began to fill the void. I was not sexually active with these men but I began to crave the attention, anyone who made me feel special and loved, I started to attract myself to. Not realizing that these men could see the need for validation and approval from them and a lot of them used my weaknesses to hurt me but in January 2010, I met a man that showed me what it really meant to be loved.  I knew then that God had not counted me out and that at my lowest point, he brought someone in my life that was able to support me, uplift me, etc…  This man caused me to begin to look at myself in a whole new light.  In 2013, I was also introduced to the Bare.Bold&Beautiful movement and since then my life has not been the same.  I met a group of women who encouraged me to be who God made me and not try to alter myself  to fit anyone else’s standards.  I have truly come to grips with the person that God made me and through this movement. I have learned to embrace me more and more everyday. I look at it as God used my significant other to plant the seed, he used Bare.Bold&Beautiful to water and now God himself will give the increase.

    Are YOU interested in being featured as a Bold Beauty of the Month? Read how to apply by clicking>>> HERE
Bold Beauty of the Month

April’s Bold Beauty: Too light
Mar 15 2014

IMG1532-1

 

Meet Aprils BBM: Ashley

Loving God’s Creation

            “Mmm I need a tan, I am too light skinned,” these are an example of some of the negative words I would say in reference to my desire to be a black woman with darker skin. I am a woman of color! My mother and father are people of color! and even within writing this sentence I am not sure how society would agree in my classification of “our” race anymore. For simpler terms, let’s just say “black” people.

            I was teased in school in different forms, by different people, but all the teasing was in reference to my skin color and my love for associating with people outside of my ethnicity. Most of my memorable incidents happened in high school. Yes, in high school, a place where we are already struggling to identify with someone or something. So, one guy used to call me a “mutt.” He knew I was not “mixed,” but he persisted to call me names simply because I appear to look “mixed.” Some of my family members called me an “oreo.” Their definition of an “oreo” is a person who looks black on the outside but “acts white” on the inside. I understand there are certain stereotypes associated with different ethnicities, but mistaking cultural awareness, for “acting” as a particular group of people is ridiculous. If I went through the teasing about light brown hair, hazel eyes, and light skin, I can’t imagine what a true interracial person goes through.  I know that this topic can and is going on forever, but my issue “was” about my insecurity with my skin color.

I love dark skin because I think that blemishes on darker skin do not show as easy as lighter skin. But now I love dark skin because it is just like my skin, UNIQUE ON EVERY PERSON. I don’t have to down talk my God given skin just because I like certain qualities in other people. I have learned how to take better care of my body and skin and I feel at peace with my skin I live in. I love who God created and is transforming me to be, not just on the outside but on the inside as well. There is so much more I could elaborate on about my journey to joy with my skin, but God’s word ends all things well.

Ladies, 1 Timothy 4:4 New American Standard Bible states :For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, if it is received with gratitude…

         Are YOU interested in being featured as a Bold Beauty of the Month? Read how to apply by clicking>>> HERE
Bold Beauty of the Month