#LoveYourSelfie – A Brush with Beauty

I feel beautiful today. I don’t know why. I’m in my pajamas, my living room floor is cluttered with toys, clothes need to be sorted and folded in the bedroom. Aside from my toddler, who’s napping, I’m alone. But I feel pretty, beautiful, desirable, pick a word. I do.

Maybe it’s my hair. My mother helped me do it while she was here, touch it up with relaxer, curl it up in rollers. I can do it myself but it always feels so much better when she does it. It’s years worth of memories, conversation, etc., during that process. So now my hair falls over my shoulders, still in light curls, as I left the curlers in for about nineteen hours and just took them out yesterday. My hair is light and soft and it flows when I move. I had a ridiculous fun time just rolling around in my bed with fresh roller curls and feeling my hair  bounce and flow and brush my face, shoulders, neck as I moved.

I don’t know what it is today but I feel beautiful. Last night, I dressed up with the intent of expression just such a feeling. Today, I’m content in my ladybug pj pants and pink tank, my hair a lovely tousled mess.

I guess the song is rather appropriate today: “I feel pretty, oh so pretty! I feel pretty and witty and bright!” I don’t pity anyone who isn’t me, though I do wish you a brush with you own personal beauty today that will last much longer than you dare to hope. ^_^

#LoveYourSelfie – What Do You See…?

10178416_10152034445108133_1427553082_nThis week, the Today Show is rebooting their #LoveYourSelfie series, with the further tagline of “Reclaiming Beauty”. Yesterday morning, the TODAY anchors premiered this series with a segment of them standing before mirrors and describing several things, including what they see when they look in the mirror and what in particular they like about themselves. Many of them admitted that, when they look in the mirror, they often are looking for what they can change but Lester Holt’s assessment was that, for fifty-five, he thought he looked rather good and was encouraged in that he thought that all of his hard work is paying off. He did say, however, that he does not care for his receding hairline.

I know that I have written several posts over the years about my personal battles with self-esteem and body image, and it is an ever-evolving series of struggles and triumphs in my life, even more so now that I am a mother. I really like the #LoveYourSelfie series and it’s encouragement towards self-esteem and acknowledgement of a person’s individual beauty, in whatever form it may come, so I decided to give this exercise a try myself.

I stood before the mirror today and looked at myself and I noticed a few things. Firstly, I noticed that I checked to see if my hairstyle complemented; what did it do for me? I have my hair in pigtails today, pulled low behind my ears, and I think that they make me look younger than my thirty-one years. I remember when I first wore them like this in high school; I was called “Pocahontas” all day long and was even asked if I have (Asian) Indian in my blood (in genuine curiosity, to which I replied that I am pretty sure I don’t). But I also noticed that, after a cursory inspect, I almost always lift up my top and turn to view my profile, or, more specifically what my tummy and abdomen look like. I think I am looking pretty good for a woman who gave birth only sixteen months ago. I can always afford to tone a little more (would really like to get back into bellydance conditioning for that) but I am still pretty pleased with my progress.

What do I like about myself? I like my eyes and my hands. I am short but busty so my shape is very different now from when I was younger, even just before I got married almost eight years ago. I like my legs, how they are longer than one would expect, as I was told by friends in college when they saw me in jeans for the first time. I think, bit by bit, I am growing more and more accepting of my body and my self.

Sometimes, when I look in the mirror, I still see that seventeen-year-old girl that stepped out into the world half my lifetime ago, and, sometimes, I just cannot help but smile at her.