The Beauty Within

On Friday, February 10th, August McLaughlin is hosting the Beauty of a Woman Blogfest. Make sure you stop by her blog. There are prizes to be won, but even more important, you can read inspirational stories about women and men. Tales about beauty, not on the outside, but on the inside where it counts the most.

My mother was a knockout. She didn’t have to work at it. In fact, to this day, she’s one of the least vain women I know. My dad carried this picture of her around in his wallet until the day he died. He would often pull it out, show it to others, and brag about the amazing woman he’d married.

Beside my mother and two younger sisters, I felt like a giant, tall and awkward and gangly. I slouched to hide my height. I hid in the background of pictures to hide my ugliness. I often imagined I was adopted into the family because I didn’t look like I belonged.

It was years later that I realized I’d taken after my dad’s side of the family. The women there were tall and stocky. They had meat on their bones and calves that weren’t small and delicate. But they were sweet and kind and loving.

My mother is now 83, has shrunk, and barely comes up to my shoulder. My sisters are still smaller than me. But I’m no longer that awkward, ugly teen. I’ve grown into myself, and learned that generosity of spirit is far more important than looking like the supermodel I once wished to be.

The greatest gift you can give to yourself is acceptance. Be comfortable within. Be sweet and kind and loving, and you will always be beautiful to me.

Do you have a story to share? On Friday, make sure you stop by August McLaughlin’s blog for the Beauty of a Woman Blogfest. I’ll see you there. :)

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