You are Beautiful {Beauty is confidence in a perfect creation with many anomalies}

Growing up I honestly never felt beautiful. Seriously, not as in I said that because I wanted people to confirm that I was “wrong” but I seriously looked in the mirror and thought “ugly.” Yet, isn’t that the truth with most of us? 

(Not me but a beautiful bride from a mountain wedding I photographed)

(Not me but a beautiful bride from a mountain wedding I photographed)

How truly devastating this is.

While I don’t want this to be my story of finally feeling beautiful, but rather sharing my realities that helped me come to this place in my late twenties where I can say I finally feel beautiful.

I know many people say not feeling beautiful is a lack of self confidence or comparing yourself too much to others, which I did all struggle with in my early life, but I had so much words of affirmation around me it was a bit crazy I struggled with this lie. No joke, my dad called us “gorgeous” as nicknames, and constantly told my sister and I how beautiful we were. Even with my grandpa everywhere we went everyone would tell him how beautiful his granddaughters were. And to top that off I had a boyfriend in high school who would seriously stare at me and just telling me how beautiful he thought I was. Yet, even after all of that I never felt it to the core. 

Even after being married I still didn’t feel this, which so many of us women hope in having the security of a man in our lives would help us truly feel beautiful.

Not me but a beautiful bride from a mountain wedding I photographed

Not me but a beautiful bride from a mountain wedding I photographed

It wasn’t until after I had my daughter that I started to believe I was beautiful. I read an article about how daughters grow up believe what their mother’s believe about their beauty: that if you look in the mirror and think “fat, ugly, etc.” it will come out to your daughter. And the first moment I gazed into my daughter's eyes I knew I couldn’t do that to her. I didn’t want her to grow up with that ache in her heart that she was incomplete. 

Me and my daughter when she was a few months old, photo credit my husband

Me and my daughter when she was a few months old, photo credit my husband

I don’t know what it was exactly but from then on I stopped feeling ugly. To be frank, I stopped looking in the mirror a lot, because, well, becoming a mother you truly don’t have anytime for yourself. Yet, at the core I think it was taking my eyes off myself, focusing on raising my daughter and truly believing in God creating us to be beautiful. 

Having grown a human being inside of me and seeing her truly thinking “beautiful, this is competition,” I had no logic left not to think the way God made me wasbeautiful and is. That now this saggy skin I bear from caring for a child with my body isn’t saggy skin it is war wounds. I’ve fought to keep a life alive and that is beautiful.  This body God created for me is beautiful - flawed, but beautiful.

My most current picture of me and my daughter, photo credit my husband

My most current picture of me and my daughter, photo credit my husband

I say we redefine beauty for our generation. And not that “beauty is an inward trait” crap because every girl wants to feel beautiful on the outside too. I say we say:

Beauty is confidence in a perfect creation with many anomalies.

A photo of a recent bride as she was tossing her hair in between photos.

A photo of a recent bride as she was tossing her hair in between photos.

So, today, I want to encourage you all to encourage every girl you know that she is beautiful, just the way she is. So let’s celebrate today for a creator who perfectly creates. Celebrate a creator who says He dwells in us, despite our imperfections, and calls it “good.” Let us celebrate that YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL. 

I pray you believe it.