Daisy with missing petals
I feel as if I should have some perfect advice for all of my children due to being a mother to many. Yet I think I have already given it by example. They have each watched me do things and the result of it all is they should easily be able to figure out what they should and shouldn't do. It is easier to see the fault and success in another life than in our own. It is simpler to watch sometimes than to attempt to explain where we made a splash or where life went wrong.
However, there is one thing that has plagued me like the plague. One thing I would so like to especially share with the girls in my life.
You do not see yourself as you really are. You really don't. We women really do not see all the subtle nuances that others see in us. What we see in the mirror is not the truth and only a partial truth. Don't believe your own eyes because they play tricks on you.
Society shoves down our throats that we have to find the beauty in ourselves or others won't find us beautiful. It isn't so. It really isn't. It is so easy for others to tear us down until nothing appears in the mirror as it truly is. It is just as easy for someone to build us up and create something beautiful in us that we never saw before-something we don't see in ourselves because we are too busy looking at the flaws that others have pointed out. It is simple to slip into what people call us or show us who they think we are. It just isn't always the truth.
The difficulty is in finding out the motivation behind another's words or actions. Are they attempting to make us feel bad about ourselves? Are they looking to control us with unkind words or deeds until we think they are right and that we are merely a waste in society? Or are they trying to show us who we really are, how they see us, how they wished we only were able to see ourselves? Are they seeing the wonder in each of us?
I know, dear daughters and almost daughters and sisters, and nieces and lovely friends in my life, I know you won't believe me when I tell you what a true beauty you are. Because I know the magazines and articles and television and movies and catty, jealous women tell you otherwise. I know your mirror is playing tricks, it's a fun house mirror and you are blurred by your own distorted vision of yourself. I do it too. I am just as blind as you and it ain't a pretty sight most days.
I want to tell you that your body, however much you find it to be imperfect, is perfectly beautiful and that sexy and beautiful has nothing to do with being the thinnest or having the biggest boobs or being a certain color or having your hair and nails and make up done each day( a man actually told me this and I took it very much to heart). Pretty is as pretty does. People remember that line from Forrest Gump for a reason-because it is true.
I know that when a stranger says, "Wow! Your gorgeous!" you take it more to heart than if your mother says it. I know when a man thinks you are the most beautiful creature alive you believe him more than when I say it. I know this because I live that too. And I know too, what it feels like to have someone whittle away at every part of you until when you look in the mirror you see a monster. This is the point that I am trying to hit, the advice part:
There will be those who will try to destroy your confidence and point out every flaw and pick you apart until you are in pieces. Look at the motivation behind it. The only possible motivation is to make you less. That is true ugliness.
There will be those who tell you that you are lovely. Look at the motivation behind it. It's a bit trickier. Either they want something from you and are sweet talking to get it. And sometimes, most times, they just love you and see you as you really are. Believe those people.
And finally, don't be one of the first lot. Pretty really is as pretty does.
Monika M. Basile
Daisy with missing petals