My girls are beautiful.
Have you seen them before? Oh my, the sparkly eyes, the long blond hair, the sun-kissed skin, the mile wide smile of the youngest and the sweet beauty of the eldest............they are beautiful. It takes my breathe away sometimes.
I make sure to tell them all the time.
They. are. beautiful.
It's not contingent on what they wear or the lip gloss that sometimes finds itself smeared this way and that on little pink lips. It's not based on how tall, how short, how wide, how small - they are just beautiful.
I want to make sure that they hear that voice, over and over in their head.
You. are. beautiful.
When they are eight and some little kid on the playground says you're ugly or I hate that dress or those shoes are dumb.............they'll know better. They are beautiful.
When they are twelve and a group of girls decides they don't look the right way or have the right clothes or decide to flippantly be cruel that day.............they'll know better. They are beautiful.
When they are sixteen and that boy doesn't talk to them or DOES talk to them (which is scarier to a mother, I am not sure) and tells them what they do or don't want to hear..............they'll know better. They are beautiful........no matter what.
When heartbreak comes and they look in the mirror and wonder why? The doubt may creep in and the fear may come but eventually...............they'll know better. They are beautiful.
I will take every day to tell them. I will take each moment to tell them. I want the voice to be strong and sure in their mind. I want them to look in the mirror and know beauty. I want them to look and see strength and love and, yes, beauty.
Today I saw a beautiful woman at the gas station. She was in her 70s I am sure. She had shorts and a t-shirt on, make-up, hair done............she was beautiful. I would kill for her figure at 34. I ran over and told her how her beauty caught my eye and that she had great legs. She teared up a bit, laughing, and gave me a hug. I saw her husband out of the corner of my eye looking over at two crazy women hugging each other in the gas station parking lot. He probably thought we were even crazier when he heard what was going on.................but I am sure that woman doesn't think it's crazy. She knows. It feels good to be told of your beauty.
I think sometimes we miss the mark when we don't emphasis our daughters' beauty along with all their other many accomplishments (which I praise my girls for ALL kinds of things not just their beauty). But who do we want to be the source of their thoughts on beauty? All the magazines, tv shows, girls at school, women on billboards, boys who want to date them etc. - is that where we want their thoughts on beauty to come from? Or do we want them to hear our words? When they look in the mirror will they compare, will they cringe because they don't look a certain or will they rest in the knowledge that they are beautiful?
I have to admit so much of this comes from my own experience. Almost every day I was told I was beautiful and still am being told that. So most days, most of the time I look in the mirror and see beauty. Not the beauty of magazines or movies or teenage girls but the beauty of a woman. I see a beautiful woman who has joy and love in her life.
I thank my parents for knowing what this girl's heart needed. I thank them for being the voices that resound in my head when I look in the mirror. I thank them for all those days of praise. I thank them because it led me to a man who says with sincerity that I am a woman that gets more beautiful with age. I look in the mirror and hear these voices which drown out all the other images and voices that come from people that don't see me every day or know me or love.
Thank you so much, mom.
Thank you so much, dad.
Thank you so much, Joe.
Every time I doubt or fear or drown just a bit in my own insecurities.......................I do know better. I am beautiful.
Take the time today or each day to find beauty in the women around you. Don't be scared to tell them of their beauty. Each time I praise a woman for her beauty I see her face light up - it's a gift to both of us.
Let's start a beauty revolution.............where each day we lift another woman up instead of tear her down. Where we decide what beauty is rather than the media telling us what it should be. Where beauty is celebrated not hidden or downplayed.
Let's start now..........
YOU. ARE. BEAUTIFUL.