Our society, very unfortunately, puts a lot of pressure and focus on outer appearances. We are told by companies and advertisements to lose weight, change our hair, buy these pants, use this makeup, and on and on and on. Basically, we are told we are not enough. It is untrue, and frankly, exhausting.
We are thrown into this society that cares only of the way we look. A pretty, thin female is attractive. A tall, dark man is handsome. And that is it. Because these companies want your money, they do not care about your worth, self-image, or anything else. They want to sell a product and for you to buy it.
But beyond that, we compliment each other on the way we look and dress. Myself included! I catch myself, all the time, telling someone, “Oh, I love your shirt.” Or telling my son, “You are so precious, and the most beautiful human in the world.” And he is. But he, and each other human out there, is much more than their outer appearance.
I’m not saying we should not compliment someone, but we should make our comments personal. As in, “It is so good to see you. Your presence brings me happiness.” Or to my baby boy, “I’m very proud of you; you are so determined.” Let’s share with each other what we ADMIRE. Let’s dig a little deeper to talk to the personality, actions, and connections we see in others. Not their perfectly toned arms. Or makeup. How superficial.
I want no part in those conversations. Why say anything at all? Is that all we see?
This whole conversation started in my mind because of social media. Go figure. I noticed everyone would say how beautiful my baby boy is. My mom posted photos of me on my birthday, and everyone said how gorgeous I was. *Not to mention the majority of the photos are from when I was a tanning bed-obsessed, bulimic teenager. Barely anyone acknowledged ME. They saw my image, these posed pictures with me in too much makeup. Again, when I was having the hardest struggle of my life, partially due to having a distorted image of myself. Almost all of those people who commented on my looks never knew how I starved myself or vomited 10 times a day. They saw a “pretty face.”
I also know we mean well when saying how gorgeous a child is. BUT LET’S TAKE THE CONVERSATION DEEPER. Add in how funny or happy Lucca looks. Share how you miss your babies being a certain age. Include something more than how cute they are.
Because the more we focus on image, the more they see their worth in that image. The more they care only about looks. The more our children cannot see past what they spot in the mirror.
I want no part in it.
I still tell my baby how precious he is, but I tell him so much more. I want him to know he’s beautiful, BUT EVERYONE IS BEAUTIFUL. I want him to know he’s smart, he’s hilarious, he’s sweet, and he makes me happy. I tell him I’m proud of him, just for being here. I want him to feel he is worthy of life, attention, and love just the way he is. I want him to feel like he’s enough, without any products or certain clothing or toys.
Because he is enough, just the way he is.
And so am I.
And so are you.