Editing My Novel

I’ve begun to do the final edit of my novel. The last time I picked it up was in October last year. I started to do the final edit but got sidetracked for 8 months.

I’m finding it really interesting going back over something I began writing about 4 years ago. So much of what I wrote back then is actually personally relevant to me now.

It’s weird how something completely imagined has ended up imitating parts of my life. At the time I began writing it I was inspired by a man I had been in love with for years and parts of the characters were parts of me and how I was feeling at the time.

Since then a lot about me has changed. I met someone who called me beautiful, stunning, gorgeous and sexy, but not all at the same time. Anytime they used such incredible and evocative words to describe me I never believed it, although at the time I believe they were meant genuinely.

When I look in the mirror I don’t see a beautiful woman but hearing someone use those words to describe me I changed the way I saw myself. I hid behind my looks for years, allowing myself to put on weight so people wouldn’t look at me and generally not caring much about my appearance.

All of a sudden someone saw something in me I didn’t and I wanted to be the person they saw. I lost weight and started to make more of an effort on my appearance. I put thought into my clothes instead of just wearing whatever I felt like and not worrying what people thought.

I felt confident in my own skin for the first time in years. The overly confident little girl that everybody loved had started to make a comeback and I felt positive about myself again.

Things ended and the way I see myself has changed again. I stopped making an effort; I don’t want to be seen anymore. I don’t want to go back to the person that hid away; I worked too hard in the last year to do that. So I’m fighting it, the urge to hide away and wallow in the self-pitying hatred of myself. There are enough people who look down on me and make me feel worthless without me adding to it.

I may not see a beautiful woman in the mirror but reading what I wrote today I see someone who is capable of writing something beautiful. I’m proud of the work I created. If one day even one word of it reaches out to someone and makes they smile or realise something about themselves then I will be very happy and fulfilled.

I wanted to share this passage, which out of context won’t mean much. It was written 3 years ago but is basically what my friend Lynn says to me every time I say something negative about myself. Something she has said to me quite a lot in the last few months when things have been tough for me.

“I wish you would stop doing that. You are a beautiful woman and someone cared enough about you to give you a second chance. You made mistakes but are fortunate enough to get the chance to learn from them. Please stop being negative about yourself. The way you look can be changed if you want to change it along with all the other things you don’t like about your life. All you need is the desire to change and the focus to do it. Please believe me when I say you are a beautiful woman.”

Everyone deserves to have someone see the beauty in them and to tell them how special they are. We are all special in our own ways and have our own unique skills and abilities. Sometimes it takes someone equally special to see your beauty but when they do trust their words, it will be worth it.

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