As someone who has endured so much in my life, I realize now how important it is to share my story with others, so that I may give them hope for the future. It is really hard to tell someone, “everything will turn out fine”, without them seeing proof of it for themselves.
I am proof. Ten years ago, I never thought I would be where I am today. Like most teenagers, facial difference or not, I didn’t think that someone could ever love me just the way I am. That’s because I was born with the largest birthmark I have seen on anyone to this date; it covers the lower half of my face, goes down to my chest and also covers a large portion of my head. My birthmark is the result of a collection of swollen capillaries that cause a reddish-purple discolouration – more commonly known as a Port Wine Stain.
If it were not for AboutFace giving my parents the support and tools they needed, I don’t think they would have been able to give me the well adjusted childhood I had. I started laser treatment for my birthmark when I was in Grade 3. I remember my mother coming into my classroom afterwards and explaining to the other children what my birthmark was, and why it looked different after treatment. Having a massive birthmark on your face welcomes all sorts of comments. I used to dread the days after Halloween because kids would say “Halloween is over, you can take off your makeup!” and laugh with their friends.
On August 25, 2012, I married the love of my life, Wyatt. He loves me for who I am, birthmark and all. He even came to a few laser treatments with me, and asked the doctor to try the laser on his arm so he could understand what it felt like and what I was going through. If that’s not love, I don’t know what is!
Let our story serve as hope! Even if you feel like no one will ever love you, like I have on numerous occasions, rest assured that people do love you no matter what you look like, because it really is what’s inside that counts!
Click here to read the complete 2012 Holiday Appeal