Watching the movie…
So I have just gotten home from watching «Embrace». I am overwhelmed by how amazing this documentary was. There were moments where I sat in the movie theater and had tears rolling down my face because of how mean we can be to each other and how we can be even meaner to ourselves. It is so amazing how Taryn Brumfitt made this movie such a personal experience for every single viewer in that theater. The fact that several women, that I talked to afterwards, told me that they were teary eyed at one point in the movie speaks volumes about what kind of world we live in.
I miss my cute belly button…
Everyone struggles with their self-image or the fear that they might be singled out because of their looks. Yet, a lot of us feel like we are alone in feeling this way. It took me a long time to accept the stretch marks on my belly from the pregnancy. I always knew it was ok and that a lot of women have them. I also wanted to be proud of them because it shows that I had 3 babies and that is something to be damn proud of… but it’s not that simple sometimes. You can tell yourself something you would like to be, but that does not mean that it is so. I still miss the belly button I had before I was pregnant with my first child. I used to have the cutest belly button and it has never gone back to looking the way it did before I was ever pregnant. My breasts were a topic that I used to have a big problem with. I used to hate the fact that they had lost their firm shape from when I was a teenager and breastfeeding 3 babies did not help that. I used to look in the mirror every day after showering and hate that I had extra skin on my lower belly from the pregnancies. There was nothing I could do about that (except surgery, which was never an option for me) and no amount of working out would ever make that go away.
braces at 26 years old…
I was 26 years old when I had finally saved up enough money to get my teeth straightened with braces. Up until that time I would regularly have strangers walk up to me and tell me how bad my teeth looked and why on earth I had never gotten them fixed. I mean, yes, they were crooked… but not so bad that it scared small children. And what was the point of these random strangers telling me this? There is only one outcome that someone can achieve with these actions and that is to make someone feel bad. Why does anybody feel the need to tell a complete stranger how bad they think they look? It was one of the happiest days when I finally got my braces off at the age of 27 and looked in the mirror to see perfectly straight teeth. Although I was looking forward to having pictures in which I can smile without feeling self-conscious, I was more excited about the fact that I knew I was not going to get harassed in front of my friends by total strangers anymore… it was embarrassing and always made me feel like I was ugly and I hated feeling like that about myself.
I am beautiful!
I am at a point now in my life where I accept who I am and how I look. Of course, I still prefer it when my clothes hang off of me perfectly and I look the way I imagine I want to look like on pictures… but I don’t make my happiness depend on it. I stopped making up reasons or looking for parts in my reflection that would make me feel like I am not good looking enough. When I have days where I feel like I look bigger than I would like to look I adjust my clothes instead of my happiness. This way I can focus on being happy and on the people around me instead of dragging myself down with self-doubt. It has not been very long since I have gotten to this point and I am not saying that I never fall into doubting my visual worth, but I get out of it faster than I used to and I am better at focusing on what is important in my life.
True beauty is everywhere, you just have to look!
I focus on the true beauty that I see around me in the way my kids smile at me, the way my hubby looks at me and the way I can light up my friends’ eyes when I am just being my usual silly, sarcastic self. I am beautiful and so are the people that surround me. The tired woman dragging her kids past me through the supermarket this morning that smiled my way, she’s beautiful too. The hardworking father with worry creases all over his face on the bus this afternoon, hurrying home to his family, he’s stunning! The elderly couple slowly making their way to the park bench in the park yesterday, smiling at each other and holding hands, they are amazing! There is so much beauty in this world and if we just stop comparing ourselves to each other and start looking at what we actually see, then there is hope yet that our children might grow up in a world where complete strangers don’t feel the need to bully each other, but instead randomly complement them.
I have finally Embraced!Ella (and hopefully every person on this wonderful planet soon!)
The beautiful stranger in the rockabilly dress…
Not too long ago, I was walking into the grocery store and saw this beautiful young woman, wearing a Rockabilly style dress, her hair and makeup matching the outfit perfectly and she looked absolutely stunning. Obviously she stuck out like a sore thumb among all the other shoppers, but I realized how I thought to myself “wow, she looks amazing”. So when she walked past me, I turned to her and told her exactly that thought. The expression on her face was filled with so much surprise and joy. She told me how she was on her way to a themed wedding and thanked me for telling her how beautiful she looked. She had a smile from ear to ear as we parted and I was so happy to think that maybe, just maybe, I made her feel beautiful for the rest of the day because there is rarely as much honesty as a perfect stranger telling you what they see.
So here is my challenge to you: Next time you are out and you see someone beautiful, tell them! You don’t have to make a big deal out of it, but just tell them as you pass by. I have since made it a point to randomly tell people when I think beautiful thoughts about them. Little things like, “I love that purse” and “those shoes look great on you” or a lady holding a shirt up to herself in front of the mirror “That shirt is totally your color, I think it would look gorgeous on you”. Sometimes it’s all it takes to make someone’s day and the reaction you see happening in their face is amazing and worth it. Why don’t we make it a point to let other people know how stunning they look, what do we have to lose? Maybe, just maybe, we can be the reason for someone to have a wonderful day, followed by an amazing week, then year and before they know it, an incredible life… just because they stopped doubting themselves!
I have embraced… have you?
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