Mama duck sat patiently on her 5 eggs. Today was the day. Crack! The first little duckling poked its head out of the egg. One by one, her ducklings made their way into the world. After a long wait, the last little one, who was smaller, darker and fatter than her siblings decided to join them. Mama duck was very happy that all her babies were healthy. She named them after numbers 1,2, 3, 4 and 5.
The next day, Mama duck took all the ducklings to the pond. They followed her everywhere. She noticed how Ducky5 was a little different from the others, so she gave her an extra smile.
Frequently, the animals on the farm made fun of Ducky5, poked at her and called her “Ugly”. Mama duck always came to her rescue, and told her, “You are beautiful, you are the apple of my eye”.
One day, Ducky5 came back home with tears in her eyes. She did not want to play with her siblings anymore. Her sisters called her dark, her brothers called her fat. “Why am I like this?” she wondered aloud. Mama duck reassured her, “Your difference is what makes you beautiful“. Happily, she went back to play and race.
The old wise horse told Ducky5, “Be nice and do good. It doesn’t matter if you are ugly. Only your inner beauty matters”. Her mom told her, “You are nice inside and out, I believe in you“.
Years later, by the lake, the little duck looked into the water. She saw only a Big Strong Confident Healthy Beautiful duck. When she saw the swans flying above her, she smiled and waved them Goodbye.
Why I think The Ugly Duckling should be retold:
Recently, when I was reading The Ugly duckling to my toddler, I noticed how there was no “real goodness” in the story. The duck was Ugly, suffered a lot, turned out to be a swan and flew away? It was a little difficult for me to wrap my head around the logic. Coming across the story of Lizzie Velasquez, whose photo was doing the rounds on the internet, as the “World’s Ugliest Woman” helped me gain some perspective. Here is an inspiring short video to her documentary.
What is Beauty?
How the world perceives you and “How pretty they think you are” should not define who you are as a person and what you do.
“It is not the question of inner beauty. It is not the question of what products you can use to make yourself more pleasing. It is not of just being different. You will be beautiful when you feel beautiful about yourself.”
Another person who lives by this is Acid Attack victim, Laxmi. She has overcome immense physical and emotional trauma to pursue and achieve her dreams.
Let us move forward together to redefine what beauty is. You don’t have to be fair and lovely, or dark and handsome, or have a 36-24-36 figure to love yourself, to marry, to ace an interview, or to be successful in life.
Feel beautiful. Be Beautiful.