Being Beautiful

Have you ever got a case of the ugly or the fat? Times in your life when no matter how many outfits you try on or which angle you look at yourself in the mirror you just do not feel pretty.
My husband knows to steer clear of the bedroom when these days hit as I wander through the closet desperately trying to find something that makes me feel beautiful, accepted, and loved.  Most days the process ends with me sitting on the edge of our bed in a puddle of tears.
I am guilty…I have maxed out credit cards trying to find beauty in a bottle, on a shelf, or hanging on a rack.
I have not gone to outings with friends or even church because I felt fat.
Some counselors say fat is not a feeling…as a counselor I respectful disagree with my colleagues.  Fat is a feeling…and it hurts.
Feeling fat is my way of saying I am hurting, I am scared you won’t love me, that you will find out about my unlovable bits and walk away in disgust.  It is my scared little girl who never got asked to a dance or on a date.  It is the part of me who thinks I failed, that I am not worthy of your time or affection.  It is my shame.
As a woman I feel pressured to be this kind of standardized beauty. But the standard keeps changing and I can’t keep up.  It’s beautiful to be obese, or is it long legged, no wait it changed to small thighs and a tight butt…I can’t keep up.
Maybe I don’t have to keep up? Maybe all I have to do is gently change my perspective? Perhaps being beautiful begins with a change in my heart that says I don’t want to be compared to anyone else’s beauty, I want to be my own unique beautiful.
My unique beauty can’t be found in the pages of a magazine or on a website.  You won’t find it on a rack, in a bottle or on a shelf.  It is in the soft blue of my boy’s eyes and the generosity of my daughter’s heart. It lingers in the sweet sound of my husband’s voice.  It stirs softly in the memories of sweet baby Loftus. My beauty hides in quiet places…moments of love, tenderness, sweetness, and sometimes great pain.
I can’t buy this kind of beauty with a credit card.  It comes from living life and gently honoring and loving others hearts as I would my very own.
Being Beautiful is simply being me.

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