By Mollie Mansfield
A woman who lost her eye and almost died after suffering third degree burns from spilling boiling butter on herself as a toddler has turned down further cosmetic surgery in a bid to learn to love her scars.
When she was just one-year-old, Alyssa McDonald, pulled a pot of boiling butter onto herself and suffered from third degree burns all over her face and had to have her left eye removed.
After being rushed to hospital, Alyssa, now 27, spent two years fighting for her life and undergoing multiple surgeries – including skin grafts from her back, bikini line, thigh and shoulder to help restore the skin on her face, and having a glass eye installed to replace her left eyeball.
The mum-of-one continued to have surgeries until she was 17, but has since declined any further cosmetic surgery which would help minimise the damage the burns did.
Instead, Alyssa, from Stillwater, Oklahoma, US, has decided to learn to love her scars and is hoping to use her story to help others accept their flaws.
Alyssa said: “I was at my grandma’s house celebrating Memorial Day with my family and there was butter melting on the stove.
“When I went over to the hob, I grabbed the melting butter and accidentally poured it over my face and it burnt the entirety of my face and my left eye.
“I was rushed to hospital and told that I had third degree burns covering 60 per cent of my body – but mainly my face.
“Over the years I had loads of surgery to try and cover up my scars, but by the time I was 17 I just wanted to embrace them.
“I have refused several cosmetic surgeries as I believe I am beautiful and, with the help of my daughter, I have learnt to love myself again.”
After having several surgeries throughout her younger and teenager years, Alyssa claims she had enough and wanted to start living her life.
She said: “When I turned 18 I got to decide what surgeries I did and didn’t want and I decided I needed a break.
“I haven’t had surgery in 10 years now and, after going under the knife multiple times a year since I was two-years-old, I’m done unless absolutely necessary.
“Even though I get rude stares from strangers, the way I look doesn’t bother me and I know that my security and confidence in myself is the winning factor.
“Ever since I was a child I knew that my struggle had a purpose and recently I discovered that that was to help other people find confidence in themselves.”
Alongside putting a halt to her surgeries, Alyssa says that having her child has given her the confidence to learn to love herself.
She said: “My daughter is my everything and every move I make is for her.
“I want to make sure that she has me as a role model to look up to, and that’s another reason why accepting my appearance and loving myself is so important.
“Life is too short – I believe we only get one chance here on Earth, so you shouldn’t spend time worrying about what other people think.”