Quest (aka I’m A Bad Hair Cut And A Lovely Singing Voice Away From Being Snow White)

[noun; ~ Pronunciation: /kwest/]

  • Definition: Being on a quest is like being on a mission, often with the goal to find something or solve a problem. It appears I have been on a personal quest to find self-appreciation for a long while now, and it feels as though I’ve come to the last bridge to cross. A very very (VERY) long last bridge to cross.
“Clarity and consistency are not enough: the quest for truth requires humility and effort”Tariq Ramadan

Let’s face it: the only thing withholding me from becoming a Disney princess is my terrible singing voice, because not only would I qualify as a solid Ice Queen if I had the voice for it, I would also make a lovely Snow White. Hah, if I could sing I’d make an even better Snow White than this one, because my hair doesn’t look like I went to the men’s hairdresser. Just saying.

My skin, that’s the problem here. Or maybe it’s not a problem, although it sure feels like one. But every story has a beginning, so let’s start appropriately:

All throughout high school I was bullied for being very pale. I think most students thought Ghost or Corpse was my real name, for they sure used them more often than Samantha. I grew so insecure, I started using a solarium once a week. Not that anyone noticed, of course. Except for me and my family. They saw a subtle change in skin tone.

Then I saw a TV show about the use of sun beds, in which they explained how using one just once a week increases the odds of getting skin cancer by 50%. I quit fake tanning immediately.

That was years ago. Last week, my old gym stopped existing and as a goodbye me and some girls from zumba went out to dinner, after which they ended up adding me to their WhatsApp chat group. Completely useless, as I hardly ever use my phone at all, but they were relentless and I was too polite to decline.

Yesterday, I noticed I had about 52 unread messages from them and decided to see what the fuss was all about. It was about the new gym having a solarium.

At this point I think I have to point out that the zumba-girls-team consisted of me, my mother, an Indian girl, a girl from Azerbaijan, and two normally tanned blonde girls. Do you see them in your head? Indian, Azerbaijani, and two tanned blonde girls. You have them? Good. Let’s move on.

My WhatsApp-chat was overflowing by above mentioned girls (not my mum) about “being too pale” and “desperately needing a tanning session” in the new gym’s sun bed.

I tried to joke about me being the palest and feeling fine, but they kept going on and on.

At this point I wondered about two things: a) how they thought this made me feel, them being so “pale and ugly”, while I am much paler. Does this mean they think I am super ugly?
And b) I am the thinnest person of the chat group. What if I would start a conversation about dieting each time they mention a solarium? Would that make them feel as bad and insecure as they made me feel? Not that I would actually do this, but the thought crossed my mind.

The real problem, of course, resides in between my ears. There’s nothing wrong with me or my skin, it’s just a huge sore spot after six years of High School Hell. I shouldn’t be bothered at all by other person’s insecurities. In fact, they might laugh at me now for being ghost-like pale, but in ten years time I’ll probably look like I’m still thirty while people would guess them ten years older, with their wrinkled, leathery and orange skins.

Guess who’ll be laughing at who then!

I’ve been doing so well lately, I really feel like I’ve grown as a person. Writing about my life and life in general gives me a clear perspective of who I am and what I value, and I kind of started to like me.

Huge steps were taken, but one more bridge needs to be crossed: getting over my complexion-obsession. I buried it well and deep, thinking I had fully recovered and was ready to move on, but all this solarium-nonsense brought back old worries and ripped open year-old scars. I feel like I can’t fully accept myself until I’ve accepted my (lack of) skin tone. It’s a part of me, and it shouldn’t make me feel uneasy, yet at the moment it does.

But I’m ready to work on that! It’s my next personal quest: accept myself to the fullest. I know I’m right, but now I have to feel it’s much better to live a beautiful life looking like a corpse, than to be a beautiful looking corpse.

And if that fails, I’ll just take up singing classes, dye my hair black and call Disney.

Or try spray-tanning and become a singing carrot.

19 thoughts on “Quest (aka I’m A Bad Hair Cut And A Lovely Singing Voice Away From Being Snow White)”

  1. Kids are idiots. Paleness of skin was never an issue for me, but I got picked on at school for all sorts of other reasons, as did a great many other children at some point or other. Kids will just take whatever they can find that’s a little different and use that as a weapon. Although the thing the kids use may sometimes genuinely be unfortunate (e.g. a stutter or a birthmark), often it’s something that really isn’t (e.g. accent, fashion choices, sexual orientation).

    Skin tone definitely fits into this second category. It’s not something that has to be worked on or overcome in some way. It’s just a fact about someone that makes no difference one way or another to their appearance. There are very attractive people with pale skin. There are very attractive people with dark skin. There are very attractive people with skin tones somewhere in between. It’s really kind of irrelevant.

    (p.s. I just wanted to add that it doesn’t really matter what the reason for bullying is, it’s always a bad thing and is never acceptable or excusable.)


    1. Kids are cruel, teenagers especially. I don’t know how I survived that period of my life! D:

      I agree with you: kids smell your weakness and quickly use it against you. Probably as a defence-system, because if they don’t bring you down, you might take them down instead.
      Bullying IS an awful thing and I wonder if there is a cure for it. I have zero-tolerance for it, though! People say it’s harmless, but it’s not. Suicide rates among teens have gone up in my country, because of them being tormented. And what do the bullies do? Cry and say they didn’t mean it like that. Or just shrug it off.

      But, on the other hand, a total clichΓ©: it did make me a better person. Because I would never treat someone the way I was treated.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I agree with you absolutely. Having suffered some degree of bullying when I was at elementary school, I have absolutely no tolerance for it at all.

        I reserve particular distain for teachers who shirk their responsibility to create a safe learning environment for children by saying something like, “Oh, bullying’s just a fact of life, so deal with it!”

        Of course, if such individuals were mugged when walking through a park at night, their wallet stolen and their face bloodied and battered, the first thing they would do is run bleating to the police station for help.

        I’d be very interested in their response if the police officers said to them, “Oh, crime’s just a fact of life, so deal with it!”

        Liked by 1 person

        1. And you know something, even if those teachers would in fact be robbed and beaten up and come crying for some help or comfort, we’d never say that back. Because we’re not like that.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. “Huge steps were taken, but one more bridge needs to be crossed: getting over my complexion-obsession”
    —You have made great progress! πŸ™‚
    For the obsession part, I guess most people struggle with, one way or the other. Often times it comes from our environment, our family, friends circles: their likings or dislikings tend to set up the benchmarks for us to comply. If their certain influences are overwhelming, it may be wise to “redesign” our life, our daily routines, so that the troubling elements can be minimized. In my case, I am overly sensitive to be judged by others, to the extent it affects how I behave. I really hate it. So I unplugged myself from all the social media (well, almost, except blog:). Without the pressure to be judged, I can now focus on doing what I truly value, instead of thinking how to impress others.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Fear of being judged by others is a terrible way to live life; I’ve tried that myself for many, many years, and this post is a sign I’m still not 100% over it. But we only need to please one person in order to be happy, and that is ourself. Plus, googling the pros of a porcelain skin also helped for me πŸ˜‰ And knowing I am not the only one does, too.
      Hope you have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Samantha, you are beautiful. I agree – those with sun-shocked skin will eventually pale in comparison to your fair complexion. Just throwing a quick two cents into the comment bucket. Sweet evening to you. ✌🏼️

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My husband jokingly calls my skin tone flourescent. I feel you!

    I think you taking care of your skin is loving yourself. The fact that you will not hurt yourself to fit in or impress strangers shows so much maturity.

    As a side note, when age comes up in conversation, strangers think I’m ~28 when I’m actually 36. One of the huge perks of taking care of my body.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your comment! I just googled ‘pros of a pale skin’ and I feel a lot better already. Of course your kind words help as well πŸ™‚
      You know, people usually think I’m younger, too. They easily mistake me for being in my early twenty’s, while in fact I’ll be turning thirty this year! D:


  5. Thanks, Micah. I feel a bit like Mika now, when he was interviewed and the interviewer told him how happy he got from listening to ‘Grace Kelly’, to which Mika replied: “That’s funny, because I was so angry when I wrote that song!”. I felt a bit down since the solarium crap chat yesterday, but your comment made it all better πŸ™‚ Thanks for that!


  6. I so totally love your way of expressing yourself!!! Thank you so much for a huge laugh (greatest headline ever!!!) and a lasting smile 😊

    Plus, please allow me to quote my “messiah” Kris Kristofferson just one more time, again and again πŸ˜‚

    He wrote a song called “Pilgrim’s Progess”, where it says “I got happy – there was nothing else to do”

    YOU & Kris are totally right — there is nothing else to do than getting happy 😊

    Liked by 1 person

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