Hey…You’re beautiful!

Yes, you! We all are.

A lot of people say this. A lot of people say this because it’s socially acceptable and then turn around and make comments about people behind their back or to themselves in the mirror. It’s really gotten to the point that had I titled this, “All Women Are Beautiful” nobody would have even read it. So, right now stop skimming this and actually read these words:

YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL.

Stop faking it. Stop saying, “I’m kind of pretty, but…” There are no buts. Women are beautiful. It is a beautiful thing to be able to carry within yourself another human life. To produce food for your baby from your body. Women are amazing! We are amazing! After the discomfort of being pregnant, after the pain of child birth, and after not sleeping for months a woman’s ability to develop amnesia about the process and do it again is astounding. We are made to be nurturers. We are made to be a little softer for our kids and a little harder to anyone who tries to hurt them. In one minute we can flip a switch from kissing booboos and holding our children as they cry, our hearts aching to be able to fix it for them, to stone cold defender of our children. I’m sure the same applies to husbands, too, I just haven’t ever had one of those. The point is, there is nothing about that that is not beautiful.

“But I don’t look as pretty as…” Does it matter? Really? In the long run-the really, really long run when you are on your death bed your regrets will not be, “I sure wish I had had a nose job,” or “if only I had had cellulite free legs my life would have been worthwhile!” After working in a nursing home and seeing many patients at the end of their lives, I can promise you with absolutely no doubt in my mind that that won’t matter. Love will matter. Friends will matter. Your family will matter.

No matter how awful you feel or how tired you are your children will think you are beautiful. It doesn’t matter to them if you have showered yet or if you put on makeup before you take them to the park. Maybe when they’re a teenager, but if you think about your teenage years and you were embarrassed by your mother it is usually behavior-related. Think about this for a second. Have you ever thought to yourself, “my mom is really ugly!” Probably not. Even if she wasn’t a supermodel or had a funny haircut or was heavy, or lost a tooth, she’s your mom. She is beautiful because she’s a woman that took care of your every need until you were able to take care of them on your own.

I dare you to find a woman that you cannot find something beautiful about. In fact, I dare you to, sometime this week, take a second look at a woman that you would usually not classify as beautiful in your mind. Just take a second look.

The single mother with the somewhat greasy hair, no makeup, and clothes that don’t match? It may be because she doesn’t care. It may be because she doesn’t have money for shampoo, makeup, or matching clothing without holes. Or it could be that her time is spent caring for her child, not herself. That she honestly didn’t think about these things before she left the house (all mothers have had these moments, right?) She hasn’t had a moment to herself since she became a mother. Even when her child is not around, she is still caring for them. She is still stressed out about how to keep a roof over his head and clothes on his back. She is beautiful because she is strong for her child. She is beautiful because she hasn’t given up on herself and has the confidence to know that she is raising her child the right way, even if she has made some sacrifices.

The woman with a little extra weight. Could she just eat too much and be lazy? Sure. She could also have a medical problem. She may have just had a baby. She may have a reason. Nobody wants to be unhealthy. She is beautiful because she has curves. Because she is not willing to starve herself to fit in with everyone else. Because chances are she is able to laugh at herself more than anyone you know. She is beautiful because she hears the comments made behind her back and, instead of turning around and unleashing all of the anger in her body at whomever dared to call her fat, she smiles and moves on with her life.

The woman who is now at the end of her life. She has seen a lot. She has taken care of people. She has lived and she has learned, and while she may no longer be young or fashionable, if you look at her-REALLY look- she is still soft and feminine. She is still kind. She still has love to give, even if life has made her a little bitter. She is beautiful because she has seen a lifetime of love and pain and everything in between and she can still be both the soft nurturer or the fierce defender of her family or friends.

There are an endless amount of things I could list here. We are all different. We are all beautiful. We all deserve to be treated like we are, because there are no creatures on earth like the female human. Stop beating up other women. More importantly, stop beating YOURSELF up.

We all do it. Even if you’re happy with yourself generally, all women have that ONE thing that they hate and would give anything to change. Forgive yourself for it. You are beautiful, even if that darn sagging skin under your arm jiggles when you wave. Even if other things have started to droop with it. Even if you are not the same size you wore in high school, and even if your hair is a little greyer.

Be confident! It is sexy to be confident! Don’t wonder why your boyfriend or husband likes you. He likes you because you’re beautiful. He is attracted to you because men are attracted to beautiful women. Wondering this all the time is only detrimental to your relationship. Yes, your hips may be wider than his, but his weren’t designed to push babies through. Your morning routine may now be more focused on feeding your kids than making sure you look nice, but you’re still beautiful because you are willing to make that sacrifice. The only thing that can truly make someone ugly is their attitude.

So, everyone go look in the mirror right now, smooth your hair down, adjust your clothes, and then look yourself in the eye and repeat after me:

I. Am. Beautiful.

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