I’ve had it on my heart and mind for the last couple of weeks to write a blog entry on a certain subject, and I’m finally sitting down to write about it! I am a nineteen-year-old girl. I’m your cliché “church girl.” I’m a virgin and plan to be until my wedding night, I don’t drink, I don’t take drugs, and I don’t cuss. I go to church every Sunday morning, I graduated from a private Christian school, and I get involved in every way that I can. I’ve never even pondered the thought of sneaking out of the house, I’ve never been sent to the principal’s office, and, aside from having a problem with arguing with my parents, I very rarely get in trouble. Most people would probably just as soon laugh than compare me to a nonbeliever, unless it was to say the things we do differently. However, there is one thing that I have in common with at least 99% of the female population—believers and nonbelievers alike. That is that I want to be beautiful. I look at myself in the mirror multiple times a day to make sure I look just right. I know that true beauty is what’s on the inside, but I also know that whether we want to admit it or not, physical beauty is important, too.
As I say in almost every blog entry I post, I spent 2011 in a stressful state of anxiety that led me decided to harm myself because I felt worthless, stupid, and ugly. UGLY. I really despise that word! What is ugly anyway? It’s a hurtful word used to attack people’s self-esteem. To be ugly is to lack beauty and if I’m being honest here, I was ugly in 2011. Here are the reasons why I was ugly:
1) I was ugly because when I looked in the mirror, that’s what the enemy told me. In this world, there are certain absolute truths, but a lot of “truths” are only true if you believe it’s true. I believed I was ugly. Because I believed that, in my mind it was true. When I looked in the mirror, I didn’t like what I saw. I saw blemished skin, crooked teeth, dry lips, ugly glasses, chubby cheeks, a dorky grin, and a waistline that could stand to be thinner.
2) I was ugly because I felt fat. I had read somewhere that one of my favorite celebrities, who was about my height with a similar body type, weighed about 10 to 15 pounds less than I did. So, I would frequently step on the scale to see if I was closer to her weight or not. Every time I looked at the scale, I was disappointed. I rarely weighed more, but I also rarely weighed less. So, I felt fat and thus thought I was ugly.
3) I felt ugly. No matter what outfit I put on, I felt ugly. Long shorts made my legs feel fat, short shorts just made me feel awkward and my shirts were always either too tight on my waist or too tight on my chest. I just couldn’t feel good in clothes. Looking back on it now, I think that’s the main reason why I always wore T-shirts and jeans. I mean, you usually can’t go wrong with t-shirts and jeans.
When I was in high school, I never wore make up. I claimed it was because I played
sports, so I didn’t want to worry about my makeup running because of the sweat or because I didn’t want it to melt on my face in our AC-less gym, but I now know the real reason I never wore makeup was because I felt so ugly, that I didn’t think makeup would help.
Recently, I’ve decided to start wearing makeup, not because I wanted to be noticed or because I wanted to look pretty, but because I simply wanted to wear makeup. After I started wearing making, I realized that instead of lowering my self-esteem, the makeup really did make me feel pretty. I don’t even wear much makeup. I wear powdered foundation, metallic brown or smoky black eye shadow and eyeliner, mascara, and blush. My eye shadow is barely noticeable, especially behind my glasses and my blush is a very light shade of pink. So, most of the time, people don’t even notice when I’m wearing it. That’s why I normally choose to wear makeup, because I know that I want to wear it for my personal benefit of feeling beautiful, rather than drawing people’s attention.
I’ve also started to dress up more nicely lately. Again, I don’t dress up to get attention. I dress up because I want to, and because I’m not trying to draw attention, I feel better about myself. I’m sure this isn’t a newfound secret or some strange phenomenon, but I’m gonna share it anyway. I was shocked when I realized that feeling beautiful on the outside has less to do with what people think of our physical beauty and more to do with what we think about our physical beauty. Yes, we are created in God’s image, so we should know we’re physically beautiful regardless of how we feel or what people tell us, but we are human, and normally that’s not enough to make us feel beautiful. Most of the time, we have to take that knowledge and couple it with the fact that maybe we just need to feel beautiful. We have to do our hair, fix our makeup, and dress in nice clothes! There’s nothing wrong with that! The Bible doesn’t say, “Do not dress nicely. Do not were makeup. And above all, do not feel physically beautiful.” Yes, it does say, “Do not be concerned with outward adornment [basically clothes, makeup, and hair],” but I truly believe people take that too literally and use it out of context. I believe what God tells us throughout the Bible is that we are supposed to feel beautiful and if that means doing our hair and makeup, then so be it! All that really matters is that we don’t let our physical beauty become more important that God and our inner beauty.
P.S. I apologize if this seems confusing and disconnected, it’s late, and I’m tired! haha