Beautiful

I would love my bonus daughter to feel good in her own skin. To enjoy who she is as a human, and know that she is enough.

But I also know that she is 13, and just at the BEGINNING of weirdness and possibly a push/pull relationship with her body.

So how can I help? What can I do to make it better or guide her to see her beautiful spirit and not just the fact that she doesn’t fit the societal MOLD of what is considered beautiful?

I know I need to talk to her more about it than I have been.

But there are a lot of different thoughts running through my mind. I don’t know if SHOWERING her with compliments is the way for her to see her true power.

  • I was given a lot of compliments on my looks as a kid, and I didn’t believe any of them.
  • I felt ugly even though I was told I was beautiful.
  • Feeling truly beautiful is when we don’t need to be TOLD them from other people, we just feel our own power. So telling her a lot isn’t necessarily going to convince her.
  • I know I had a very different experience related to beauty growing up than she is. And yet I didn’t feel good about myself at all. I’d like to share more with her, and maybe remind her that one day, as she’s living more her truth, she will see her pure beauty.
  • I like the idea of using the compliment of ‘beautiful’ related to being kind and loving, like I read someone blogging. That it doesn’t need to only represent outer appearance.
  • Maybe I can remind her that as I have gotten older, the times when I actually FEEL beautiful are when I just stood up for myself, or when I am doing something where I am so present and immersed in it, I lose myself. I feel solid and enough and beautiful.
  • Maybe I can also tell her that just having people think you are ‘pretty’ isn’t that helpful if you don’t believe them.
  • People will always have different opinions about beauty anyway. If we are swayed back and forth if someone sees it and the next person doesn’t, we won’t feel beautiful. Beauty starts deep inside US.
  • I can also remind her that the times when I feel ugly are when I don’t speak up for myself, when I swallow my feelings and when I am trying to be different than I am.
  • Some of the most beautiful people I know do not fit societies standards of beautiful. In fact, 99.9% of people don’t fit those standards, and we can find beauty in everyone.
  • Remind her that there have been so many times that I would see someone and be swept up in their beauty and then created a story in my head about how their life must be so much better than mine, etc. And how loved they must be, etc. Once I got to know them I realized that they were going through similar things as me. There life wasn’t any better because I thought they were pretty.

Those of you that have girls, what is your experience?

I can see that not telling someone they are beautiful because of the fear that they will think that is all they are, may not be the best decision either. Maybe there is a happy medium where they are told they are beautiful but they are also told their are brave and kind and loving and strong.

 

I would love to hear your thoughts!!

xo

 

What does it mean to be an artist

This morning, in the quiet, dark morning, I was drawing in my art journal and reflecting on this past week. The kids are off in Europe with their mother for a summer vacation, and you’d think I’ve had a lot of art time. But it’s been a busy week full of lots of errands, and some family time. Parts have been fulfilling experiences and others that are just,.. you know,.. necessary.

Anyway. As I was allowing my mind to relax, I realized that I feel a bit uncomfortable. I’m feeling a bit muddled right now. Starting a new piece but not sure where it’s headed or what to do next. There’s been this gnawing anxiety inside as I work out what to do and how and if it’s even going to work.

I’m not feeling like an ARTIST. 

I hate to admit that but it’s true. I feel like a fake. I feel disconnected from whatever I thought I was and it feels yucky.

In that moment I jotted down some notes for myself.

Why is it that I only feel like an artist when I have the answers? 

Because when I think about it, being an artist isn’t HAVING the answers, it’s relishing the questions. And I’ve known this, I’ve felt it in my body before. But intellectually it’s UNCOMFORTABLE to be in a murky place, am I right? In a place where I’m feeling a bit tired and listless. But am I only an artist when I’m bursting into flames of passion and frothing at the mouth with excitement? Does being an artist really come and go just as quickly as my emotions?

No! It can’t! What if all of this is being an artist. All of it. Regardless of if I am in a buzzing bursting swirling place of joy or if I’m cloudy and unsure. I’m still a creator, I’m still searching and open and moving forward.

So this was a good reminder to have faith. Faith that there is always an ebb and flow to everything, and creating is just another part of existing. So have faith. I know I can do things to foster my creativity better than I have been.

  • I can meditate at 2 pm everyday like I planned, I can make that a priority.
  • I can remind myself to feel the sensitivity of creating when I draw. To let it absorb through my skin into my heart.
  • I can breathe through the murkiness and know that the bubbling film of questions will only lead me to the answers when I am ready to receive them.
  • I can go outside and notice everything around me that aches with beauty.
  • I can remember that being an artist doesn’t mean all I do is create. An artist must live, and it’s my job to feel, to see, to acknowledge the sacredness in all of life. That must be done outside of my little art studio.
  • I can focus on being present in more moments than I have been. Being fully there, with my eyes and heart fully open. That is the kind of artist I want to be.

Maybe it’s okay to sometimes feel lost. To sometimes not feel all that we truly are. Maybe those are the moments when we get to learn more about ourselves, and our strength then we ever knew possible.

 

 

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