Wednesday, June 3, 2009

beauty ...

have you entered my giveaway yet? if not ... go here ... and enter ... after you read ... and comment here, first, of course.

i find myself ... often ... telling my girls they are beautiful.
i catch glimpses of them in the rearview mirror. their eyes a bright oceanic blue against their pink cheeks ... rosy from running and playing. i watch wisps of their blondish hairs sticking to their foreheads after they fall asleep. i see a perfectly placed shoulder blade jutting out from their back ... as they set forth in motion.

i don't know what it is about her shoulder blade. it's a ever-so-slightly weird fascination, isn't it?

i realize in those moments of truly seeing my children.
... i realize ... i created that.

i know i had some help.
but it astonishes me that my body could create something so beautiful.
but is it enough? for me to notice it? and make the remark?
is telling them that they are beautiful ... going to somehow make it more difficult ... as they grow? are they going to think that beauty is the epitome?
i don't ever want them thinking that beauty is everything.
it's not.
but at the very same time ... it is.

because ... it is everywhere. you just have to open your eyes ... and see beautiful things. you just have to open your ears ... and hear beautiful things. you just have to open your heart ... and find beautiful things.
and THAT. is something that i want my children to learn.

“Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.”
~Ashley Smith

i want them to realize that beauty exists everywhere ... and it is completely and utterly open to definition.
that beauty is somewhat undefinable in a broad sense.
but individually ... we can all find beauty in something.
only you can define what is beautiful for you.
i want my girly-girls to know that beautiful ... is more than just a visual representation of something. a beautiful person ... must be beautiful (and kind and giving and full of sunshine) in their actions.

that the simple act of putting on a skirt. or applying lipstick. or doing your hair. or getting your toenails painted.
doesn't make you beautiful.
but that you must show beauty. you have to help someone. or use kind words. or say hello. or give because you can. or love.
pure and simple.
be loving.

because i guess in the very grand scheme of things ... that i ultimately what i want.
and i may be greedy in my desire to accomplish this ... but i want my children to love. and be loved.

i want their hearts to be full. i want them to love everything that they put their soul into. i want them to enjoy every single minute of everything that they do. i want them to feel loved.
this quote ... feels like a good ending to a post that came out of nowhere. (and didn't really GO anywhere either.) because i think this is another struggle of mine right now ... spirituality. and how spirituality doesn't have to be religion. or it can be ... whatever you need it to be. similar to beauty. (and i realize that this entire thing was a random outpouring of thought and emotion ... but i needed to get it out there ... because after all i needed to know why i tell my girls that they are beautiful when there are so many other things i could say ... so ... thanks for listening.)
it is what it is. or that which you think it is.

Spirituality exists wherever we struggle with the issue of how our lives fit into the greater cosmic scheme of things. This is true even when our questions never give way to specific answers or give rise to specific practices such as prayer or meditation. We encounter spiritual issues every time we wonder where the universe comes from, why we are here, or what happens when we die. We also become spiritual when we become moved by values such as beauty, love, or creativity that seem to reveal a meaning or power beyond our visible world. An idea or practice is "spiritual" when it reveals our personal desire to establish a felt-relationship with the deepest meanings or powers governing life.
~Robert C. Fuller

but not really the ending ... because i realize i have one more thing to say.
i wish i knew how to say what i really want to say ... eloquently ...
i find myself ... often ... telling my girly-girls that they are beautiful. but i want them to realize that ... that single word ... possesses so much more than just a simple viewpoint of their appearance. it encompasses intelligence and thoughtfulness and emotion and gratitude and everything that makes them ... them.


Sprite's Keeper said...

Beautiful words, but I keep getting sidetracked by the beautiful pictures!
And yes, I entered!

CC said...

Wonderful post. And your girls ARE indeed beautiful!!!

KJ said...

om goodness Jen, Your pictures just keep getting better! I love them!!!!

Kelly said...

Beautiful post, beautiful girls with beautiful hearts! Do I get a prize for using "beautiful" 3x in one comment? Actually 4x :)

3 Peas in a Pod said...

Your pictures are amazing Jen. You're doing so great with photography.

Love this post more than you can imagine. I can't even pinpoint just one thing that stands out from this post because it all hits home with me. Thanks for thinking out loud. Oh and by the way, you are eloquent my friend.

Much love from NJ,

anymommy said...

They are beautiful, and I have no doubt it's inside and out.

Keely said...

Your pictures (and your girls) are beautiful.

I wouldn't worry too much about teaching them the distinction; you obviously believe it and feel it, and they will learn from example. You will teach them to love & be loved without even trying, and they'll grow up beautiful both inside and out.