Last week I woke up and hopped on the scale. I totally freaked out because I was still 158 pounds. I have actually put ON weight since I’ve been working out. I haven’t been dieting or running, I’ve only been crossfitting. I’ve been going at it pretty strong over the last five weeks or so. I started doing that blah blah blah, whiny stuff as I got into the shower. Then, all of a sudden I stopped myself. I remembered that a number of women in crossfit who compete are 4-6 inches shorter than me and are either my weight or within 10 pounds of my weight. I decided right then, I just didn’t care. I seriously don’t care what my weight is. I’m getting strong and my body feels like it’s functioning so well right now. When I crossfit, I feel so physically happy. I feel like jumping and running and being active. I feel like a kid.
Steve and I were having a conversation about the weight and how I feel about it. At one point he said, “People just need to rethink what beautiful is.” Without even thinking I said, “As a woman, I would go a little further and ask, when was it ever my job to be beautiful?” Seriously, do people need to rethink what beautiful is or do we need to stop our expectations of women being “beautiful?” It’s as though it’s our job or role as a woman.
My grandfather once told me that no one can take credit for being beautiful. It’s the luck of the draw, a genetic occurrence. No one has control over whether or not they are pretty, or beautiful or handsome. How horrible to place so much importance on one thing in our lives we have no control over. We can brush our hair or even put on make-up, but really think about this. Worrying about our beauty is a battle we can’t win, because we get what we get. We spend money trying to change ourselves and the way we look. We make things bigger or smaller or tighter or more loose. What the heck has happened to us?
I wasn’t born to be pretty or beautiful, I was born for purpose. God created me to be exactly who I am, not to look pretty so someone else feels good about me. I was born to make a difference in this world, no matter how small or large it may be. No one can be who I am or replace me in my life or the lives of my people.
I’ll be perfectly honest, I’ve worried about this all my life. As a young me, I felt I always fell short. I’ve paid good money to change myself in hopes it would make me more attractive. I thought if I could just be a certain way I’d be loved the way I always wanted. If only I had this or that, I’d be happy. Well, I learned the hard way that people are people and they behave the way they do because of who THEY are and not because of the way I look. I found out I’ll never be loved the way I want because I was always looking for someone else to do it for me.
The bottom line is we have to love ourselves the most, because no one can love us until that happens. I realize I sound like a hallmark card or even like some inspirational quote on someone’s Facebook wall, but, it’s the solid truth. Finding our value in someone else’s opinion of us is futile. Finding our value in our beauty is a waste, because it means nothing. Finding our beauty in who we are, the way we love, and the difference we make in this world is what matters. We are the only thing we bring to the table that no other single person can do.
Yesterday afternoon, I sat on the couch entangled in my two older daughters’ legs. We were talking and laughing so hard. They are such amazing women and seriously bring so much love and respect and beauty to the world and to my life. As I listened to them both talk about how they see themselves physically, I wished I could take everything I’ve learned over the last decade and “mind-meld” it into their brains. I wished I could reflect for them what I see when I look at them. All I could think about was how much we really need to rethink what beauty is, and the way we look has absolutely noting to do with it.