Some days I look in the mirror and I just see fat and awkwardness and totally unmanageable hair. I try and tell myself that I'm beautiful, and that beauty is a totally artificial concept on top of that, and that the social pressures shaping and enforcing beauty and particularly female beauty are positively disgusting, but some days, I'm just not buying. Especially when I've got zits too.
On those days, I remind myself that, well, that person I mentioned doing CPR on a little ways back? They're alive now.
I remind myself that I graduated college at 19 and that at 12 I pulled a man having a seizure out of a swimming pool. I remind myself that I have my name in movie credits and that I once drove an ambulance lights-and-sirens hell-for-leather around a stock car track. I remind myself that I've wetted down a beached dolphin and I've explored an abandoned asylum, been on the national champion debate team (parli) and built trails in trackless wilderness, fucked a Calvin Klein model and broken into the set of "House" during filming. I remind myself that I've helped save more lives than I can even remember. And if there weren't all that going for me, even if I hadn't lived such a dramatic life, I'd still have what anybody has--a huge list of lives I've touched and things I've done, of differences I've made.
Don't you fucking dare tell me all that's nothing unless I'm a hot little hardbody too.
It's good to like your body, but you know, your body isn't the biggest deal about you. (Or rather, your beauty isn't the biggest deal, since few people insulting your body can be dissuaded by hearing how many pounds you can lift or how quickly you recover from injuries.) It's a heartbreaking waste to take a human being, a person rich in history and abilities and relationships and ideas, and judge them on how nice a decoration they make. Maybe that's inevitable when it comes to strangers, but you damn well know better when it comes to yourself. When you're judging your appearance, you're only judging one tiny part of your self.
So I don't tell myself "I'm pretty, really I am" on ugly days. I say "Maybe I am ugly. I'm still fucking awesome."