Bell’s palsy massively knocked my confidence and self-worth. People stare at me on the street because they think my face is different and they see my eyes blinking. People can be very mean. One of the hardest things is that I notice everyone smiling, and because my smile is very crooked, I actually practise not smiling. But not smiling doesn’t help my self-esteem either, because when we smile lots of things go on in the body and it actually contributes to making us happy.
Wendy Helm, 52
My brokenness now makes my beauty, because I can’t hide from it. I could have spent the last ten years trying to find the money to fix my face, but now I’m more inclined to feel my beauty. I’ve learned that it is more of an internal experience rather than an external experience.
I’ve learned to accept myself; I am the sum total of me, nothing more, and that is what makes me beautiful.