+
True
Maybelline New York Beauty & Beyond

From an outsider's perspective, Bethany Schrock's life looked pretty perfect.

Like many other photographers, she uses social media as her primary marketing tool, and thus fastidiously curates her work and image for these visual platforms.

Photo via Upworthy.


However, on the inside, Bethany was dealing with a lot of pain.

She had a brain tumor that was sitting on her spinal chord and optic nerve. It caused her to have seizures and even affected her ability to move the left side of her body. So while she appeared fine to most people, her invisible illness was taking an enormous toll on her.

If she didn't have surgery to remove the tumor soon, her doctors told her things would only get worse.

“If I didn’t get the surgery I would lose vision and a lot of other scary things," she says.

So Bethany went through intensive surgery to have her tumor removed, and suddenly her illness was no longer invisible.

Photo via Bethany Schrock.

However, while the experience was certainly difficult, she wasn't upset about people getting to see her pain. In fact, she embraced it.

“Having a scar was almost kind of like a badge of, ‘hey I’ve been through stuff. I am sick,'" explains Bethany.

So she started posting close up, bold photos of her scar on her social media platforms for all to see. Bethany wanted to be transparent with her audience and finally show them that beauty doesn't have to mean looking "perfect." Along with the photos, she wrote open and honest messages about health and being sick.

Photo via Bethany Schrock.

Nothing could have prepared her for the responses she received in return.

“I was overwhelmed by the amount of people who were saying, ‘hey, me too.'"

What's more, as Bethany began to recover and get back to her life, she noticed that small things, like putting on Maybelline mascara and brow gel, helped her truly embrace who she is now.

"It was the first time I finally felt like, okay, it can get better."

The whole experience inspired her to start a photography project where she photographs people who are also living with invisible illnesses.

But she doesn't just take and post their pictures — she distresses them in a way that shows the world what they're dealing inside. So for example, when Bethany photographed a woman with nerve pain, she burned parts of the photo to show what that pain might look like.

Photo via Upworthy.

“I really think pain is the number one thing that connects people," says Bethany.

Everyone deals with pain in some form or another throughout their life, but that doesn't mean they're any less beautiful for it. In fact, Bethany believes that living with pain can make you even more beautiful.

"It’s like, you’ve been through stuff," she says. "I think the people who are able to admit that are really beautiful."

Learn more about Bethany's story and work the video below:

A breastfeeding mother's experience at Vienna's Schoenbrunn Zoo is touching people's hearts—but not without a fair amount of controversy.

Gemma Copeland shared her story on Facebook, which was then picked up by the Facebook page Boobie Babies. Photos show the mom breastfeeding her baby next to the window of the zoo's orangutan habitat, with a female orangutan sitting close to the glass, gazing at them.

"Today I got feeding support from the most unlikely of places, the most surreal moment of my life that had me in tears," Copeland wrote.

Keep ReadingShow less
Canva

Small actions lead to big movements.

Acts of kindness—we know they’re important not only for others, but for ourselves. They can contribute to a more positive community and help us feel more connected, happier even. But in our incessantly busy and hectic lives, performing good deeds can feel like an unattainable goal. Or perhaps we equate generosity with monetary contribution, which can feel like an impossible task depending on a person’s financial situation.

Perhaps surprisingly, the main reason people don’t offer more acts of kindness is the fear of being misunderstood. That is, at least, according to The Kindness Test—an online questionnaire about being nice to others that more than 60,000 people from 144 countries completed. It does make sense—having your good intentions be viewed as an awkward source of discomfort is not exactly fun for either party.

However, the results of The Kindness Test also indicated those fears were perhaps unfounded. The most common words people used were "happy," "grateful," "loved," "relieved" and "pleased" to describe their feelings after receiving kindness. Less than 1% of people said they felt embarrassed, according to the BBC.


Keep ReadingShow less
via UNSW

This article originally appeared on 07.10.21


Dr. Daniel Mansfield and his team at the University of New South Wales in Australia have just made an incredible discovery. While studying a 3,700-year-old tablet from the ancient civilization of Babylon, they found evidence that the Babylonians were doing something astounding: trigonometry!

Most historians have credited the Greeks with creating the study of triangles' sides and angles, but this tablet presents indisputable evidence that the Babylonians were using the technique 1,500 years before the Greeks ever were.


Keep ReadingShow less