Beauty, SELF LOVE and a nod to Pope Francis

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ON LEAVING THE HOUSE SANS MAKEUP/WARDROBE PLANNING

I think about that concept, and just leaving the house takes me WAY too much planning, PLUS half an hour of makeup; (not to even MENTION getting my KIDS ready!).  This leaves me feeling like I am a bit of a slave to the “costumery” of it, and while adornment is fine in and of itself, the concept I’d like to work on this year is adorning something that is already beautiful.  I consciously go without makeup on some days, just to remind myself that I am as noble and beautiful without makeup and fancy doodads as with; but this isn’t always what my heart believes.  This new year is to learn how to believe this more…  Age is creeping up on me, as well as the aftermath of creating my four children (!!!!).  These are awesome, and I need to remember that.   In the past, I have shaved my head for this; to show myself that I do not need others to think me beautiful to be exactly that, inside.

My 3-year old daughter sometimes comments that I should put makeup on, but it is THEN that my response is the biggest teller of what I want her to believe about herself:  “Mommy is beautiful without makeup on; makeup is fun, and I may choose to put some on, but it doesn’t make me MORE beautiful; just a different kind of beautiful.” Slip up one time, tell myself (in front of her) that I look hideous, and she will hear that ricocheting into adulthood.  If we think about our looks, pre-made up/fixed, as troll-like or ugly in any way, and these things will translate; you cannot hide them under makeup.  Slapping paint on an unconfident face does nothing to hide this; it only makes people seem like they’re hiding something; or that they’re being a bit deceitful.  This is how I feel about plastic surgery; the intent of how people wield this gift is the crux of the matter.  And the older I get, the more I see of beautifully painted/sculpted people who have mean-spirited and dark hearts.  Beauty is something altogether different from being sexy, and I truly hope that my daughters can grow up learning that truth.  (This was especially important to me when my 5-year old asked me if she was skinny the other day.  Oooh, BOY…).  I didn’t say whether or not she was, just that she was beautiful; and that only good and kind people are beautiful.  It doesn’t make someone more beautiful if she’s skinny or chubby or normal; pink hair, black hair, grey hair, NO HAIR: NONE of it matters if she truly has a hard and unloving heart.  I hope she heard me…  I hope I heard myself.

I get SO MAD when I see a picture of some curvy vintage vixen with a tagline of “REAL BEAUTY”…  I’ve seen some of the most beautiful people I’ve ever KNOWN who were overweight, strange-looking, and YES, SOME even built like a model; but they were TRULY BEAUTIFUL because they were kind and loving.  EVERYONE can be beautiful if they choose to be kind, loving.  And THAT is a momentary decision, one we make EVERY DAY.  I wasn’t so beautiful to my husband this morning; I should’ve been.  If we treat our friends and family like they matter to us, instead of offering excuses, that shows them how beautiful we truly are.  I have had to make decisions about who to include in my life because of toxicity; I am already toxic enough to myself, I don’t need it from others.  It starts within US.  We must LEARN to be beautiful and kind to ourselves before we can treat others that way.

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This goes for the throw-away culture (NOD to POPE FRANCIS) of consumerism and endless cheap things we can buy.  I am definitely addicted to the idea of new ideas, new colors, different fits of clothing; the beautiful textures, and the strangeness of change are fascinating to me.  But we have SO much to our disposal; thrifting and making do with older, vintage or used pieces of clothing, furniture and decor are, to me, a way to quell that desire for the new (to me!) as well as a way to be more responsible with what I have.  Paint it, change it, sew it, make it unique; and it will feel new and different, along with the self satisfaction of being a part of it in a way that buying it at the mall won’t bring you.   WE are NOT the huge house we own (that we went into debt for).  We are NOT the fancy red car we drive (that we can’t afford).  We are NOT even what we CREATE, though these things can help us learn and grow.   I don’t think we will EVER know what we TRULY are until after this life, and THAT should take a load off, shouldn’t it?

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There’s always going to be someone more talented than we are, with more money, more attention, better/cooler clothing, a better grasp of their checkbook, etc.  It’s only in learning to see the imperfect beauty (and own up to our shortcomings, NO EXCUSES!), that we will be better able to grow, learn and be a more beautiful asset to those we love.  Competition in our world is already prevalent enough without adding it to our personal relationships.  It is completely toxic.

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I am ENOUGH being the human that I am; I am ENOUGH being the mother I am.  And I am more beautiful when I am kinder.  And I couldn’t care LESS if others outside of my circle don’t see that beauty; it is enough to share it with those who are part of my life now.

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