Sunday, May 5, 2013

Beauty

 I've been thinking a lot about beauty lately.
When I think of true beauty, I immediately think of Mother Theresa.
(technically, her name is now, Blessed Theresa of Calcutta)
Now, in the eyes of the world, she is not the definition of beauty.
But I believe her spirit shines through, 
even today, many years after her death.

I came across this article this past weekend

I love my daughters and want them to become confident women, 
confident in their abilities and gifts that each one has.
I want them to have a strong faith that they never let go of.

But
when I'm praying, 
I've never prayed for them to be "Beautiful".
I have prayed for them to be loving, kind and generous.

I know someone in my life that is beautiful on the outside,
but on the inside, her personality and just the way she is,
well, it makes her actually hard for me to call her "beautiful".

 I want my girls to know that models and movie stars are just regular people underneath
as these pictures clearly show:
and 
That last link, I spent some time at looking at celebrities and 
all they have gone through to live up to who we want them to be.

If we do not show our children the truth, 
they will grow up having unrealistic goals of how they should be.

I know someone who has a teen that is struggling with an eating disorder.
This is painful for the whole family to go through.
It starts way back when our children are small
and told not to eat something, or when they see 
us not eating, or choosing to not have dessert, 
because it "will make us fat".  We may think it's harmless, 
but they are watching us, like hawks.

They are watching the magazines, 
TV shows, movies, singers 
and anything that the world loves.

 
If we love ourselves, no matter what we look like 
and do not focus so much on looks,
 but instead on virtues and morals,
then they will grow into beautiful adults.
 "So God created mankind in His own image..." 
Genesis 1:27
I've never done "dessert" much.
Mostly, because as a type 1 diabetic,
 it's just more carbs and I eat my carbs at my meals.
But
I'm trying to change that a little and 
make "dessert" a few times over a 2 week period.
(like 2 or 3)
I try hard to not put myself down about my looks
It's an inner struggle, but I do not want them to have those feelings.
I want them to see a confident woman in their mother.
I want them to see that the exercising and healthy choices
I make are just that,
healthy choices. 

Aging is beauty.
What is inside can make the outside even more beautiful .

 
 

41 comments:

  1. Your daughters...your family....is very lucky to have such a caring momma. God bless us and give us the graces we need in all the struggles you've described.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I pray for those graces every day!

      Delete
  2. Love this and I agree! I am reading the new book by Pat Gohn "Blessed, Beautiful, and Bodacious." I am half way through and it's one of those books that every Catholic woman should read! (In my humble opinion:) I'm holding on to it for my daughters when they are old enough. She really focuses on discovering our inner beautify and gifts. It's really helping me in new ways. I just love it! I also love how she ties the Blessed Mother into everything! I'm going to do a book review when I'm done but I just thought I'd mention since it's on this topic. You have a beautiful heart, Jamie!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tiffany-I'm going to have to check out that book! Thanks so much!

      Delete
  3. *I meant inner beauty* Sorry for the typo!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I have not met you in person but from your words about your faith, your children, your marriage and you love of God I know that you are beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, thank you Neen. I feel the same way about you. I am so thankful we live in these times, where we can connect with women from all over the world and not even leave our homes!

      Delete
  5. Your daughters are blessed to have you as an example and cheerleader for them, Jamie Jo... Happy Sunday, friend...

    ReplyDelete
  6. I have known you for a while now Jamie Jo and I can with confidence say that you are beautiful inside and out and so happy I can call you a friend.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. OH, Odie, you are so sweet! It's so nice seeing you again on here! I feel the same way about you Odie!

      Delete
  7. You always have the best posts. Thank you for always being so honest and loving. You are a beautiful inspiration for so many!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, gosh thank you Kari. I just have to get out things on my mind, so I can go on with my day! HAHA!

      Delete
  8. Love this post. I hope my girls grow up caring more about inner beauty as well. I think some of the cl/cp kids I've seen are the most beautiful kids EVER.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know!! I didn't even go into having a child with something that made him "different". I am very conscience of it though. We love him just the way he is and think him beautiful. The hard part is I know things would be easier for him if his mouth were "normal" but he looks the way God wants him to look, and you can't get any more beautiful than that! His smile and inner beauty, of course is always there!! All the pain and surgeries he'll be going through the next 20 years, well, God has a plan for it, He has a reason.

      Delete
  9. I, too, have always struggled with my weight. My mother was overweight and never did anything about it. She also has diabetes (and when I say never did anything I mean it literally, even when her doctor told her to). Anyway, it's why my sister and I are so obsessed with being healthy. The kicker was when my then 11 year old wouldn't wear her puffy jacket. It was the only winter jacket she had, and it was a constant argument between us since it was cold. Wear your jacket! Come to find out she thought she looked fat in it. Come to find out she felt fat because her friends in our home school group are all stick thin. That's when I knew, even home schooling, doesn't protect our girls. So, I am adament about sports. Studies show girls who play competitive sports are less likely to develop and eating disorder and have a higher self esteem than those who don't. It's why I run. I may not be able to fit into my wedding dress, but I can run 5,6, 10+ miles, and it keeps my blood sugar under control. This is a wonderful post, and there was a priest I heard say a homily on just this subject, citing Blessed Mother Teresa as his example. Kudos ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm sorry about your mom. It's amazing how our parents are, well, it effects us so much. My daughter didn't want to wear a certain jacket last year either because of the same reason (not because of other girls but because she thought she looked fat) We told her there is no possible for her to look fat. Here's what gets me, who cares? Because we have one child on the "solid" side, when she was a baby, she looked like the Michelen Man (naked), so she's always been this way. I don't ever want anyone to tease her or make her feel any different for the way she is. She will never be stick thin...who cares? She is the most loving and sweet little girl. I call her my "Love girl". I guess what I'm trying to say is that if someone IS "fat" (anyone-other kids) that they are no different than us, just people. My kids have been really good about that. The only time I've heard them say "fat" is once we saw a woman so large sitting outside of Wal-mart last year, her clothes barely covered her, she had a cane, and I told the kids we should pray for her, because of how large she is, it must be so very hard and things must very hard for her to do. Just last week, one of the kids (can't remember which one) wanted to pray for the lady outside Walmart. They tried to explain her to me and looked at me and kind of cringed and quietly said "fat".

      Who cares about our wedding dresses? Seriously...we are not planning on wearing them again anyway! When we wore them, we hadn't carried so many babies yet. I saved my jeans from high school for years....so many years that even if I got that small again, they would look ridiculous, because "Lee's" just aren't in style anyway!! I got rid of them years ago now.

      *I have to state, I'm a type 1 diabetic, not type 2 like your mother. They are totally different. I was 10 when I got it. BUT exercising does help my blood sugar, for hours. Also, because of my diabetes, I do say "Oh, I can't have that because of my diabetes" or "I need to have this because I have low blood sugar" or things like that. I don't think I say "diet" but I guess I do count Weight Watcher points...the thing I like about WW is you still eat normal, so they still see me eating. Gosh thinking it through now, wonder if I've said things....

      Delete
    2. Oh, yeah, and way to go on the running Jen!!

      Delete
    3. I forgot to add that my friend actually found out the opposite of the study you did about girls and sports. Her child's eating disorder came about during sports...girls/women constantly compare each other--she told me it's over 60% of the girls in sports actually develop eating disorders. (and that our of 6 girls, only one will LOOK like she has a ED, that the other 5 will look "normal")

      Delete
  10. That Before and After website has some great photos that I ran across the other day: Celebs with Cellulite! Without the airbrushing, they ALL have it! I think that's one of the most important series to look at. We all look better with a hint of makeup, but they have the makeup AND airbrushing. Some of them are perfectly lovely without makeup, but the photo just makes them look stupid.

    Despite my weight issues, I've always tried not to use the word diet, and speak about healthy eating. However, my kids know I'm on a diet now because of pre-menopausal weight gain. But I've also become a little alarmed about how much sugar my youngest eats despite my best intentions. The last thing I want if for her to get an ED because I'm alarmed!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Isn't that site interesting? Really makes us realize they are just normal people like us!! I always actually think, how stupid that they took a picture of that!! (the cellulite ones) like it's bad or something. NO wonder they all have complexes!

      I talked a little about "diet" things in the comment above yours, responding to Jen.

      Delete
  11. Mother Theresa is the perfect person who embodies beauty in the truest sense of the word. Your children do need to see the natural part of aging expressed in a healthy manner at home. There are way too many abnormal messages in our society of beauty. It has truly been turned upside down.

    I love this axiom of Mother Theresa that our society has backwards "We were not put on this earth to be successful but to be faithful."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, that's one of my favorite quotes by Mother Theresa!! And it's so true. My mother dyes her hair (black) and she's in her mid 60's. I catch myself wishing she didn't, I want my kids to see that natural aging and to embrace it. I think she'd look beautiful with gray hair.

      Delete
  12. Your words are so true, Jamie. We spend a lot of time in our house discussing what is really beautiful and what is not. I love Mother Teresa and the example she sets for all of us of what is truly beautiful.

    Your picture of If we don not teach our children to follow Christ... really moved me. So, so true.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good Shelly. I figured you would. You are a wonderful example of true beauty. Your inner beauty shines through in all you write. I've loved getting to know you. I know this about without even having met you in real life!

      I loved that saying too...and it IS true. We always have to remember it.

      Delete
  13. Oh Jamie, isn't it so true that someone who is beautiful on the inside really is beautiful on the outside? Mother Teresa could have never won a modeling contest, but she is so much more beautiful because of it. But it does not work the other way around. If you're pretty and petty then all I can see is your pettiness.

    Maggie's godfather (who is an amazing priest) told us that he prays for her to be a "plain Jane" because he knows that the physically blessed girls can have a lot more trouble in life when it comes to being morally good. So now we pray for that too :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, gosh, isn't that true, that someone can be beautiful on the outside, but if they have major personality flaws, they become almost too ugly to look at?

      Plain Jane--I'll settle for that.

      Delete
  14. Not too much to add in addition to all the fantastic comments, but I will say this...

    One thing that truly shows the "beauty" of Blessed Teresa of Calcutta is how often our Christian bothers and sisters refer to Mother Teresa. She is a BEAUTIFUL example of Christianity (and Catholicism!!!) to the rest of the world.

    I struggle with my weight, but really try not to make it an issue in front of my kiddos. I love your idea of making a sweet treat every once in a while as a message that we can enjoy these things in moderation.

    I really struggle more with society's resistance to age...we even see this in the medical community where we go to great lengths to prolong life rather than embracing a peaceful death. My sister sees this especially as an ICU nurse where extended family members will go to great lengths to have life-saving measures taken even though the medical community knows that the quality of life is nill. (I'm not talking about feeding tube issues or anything like that, so I hope you don't misunderstand me!) I just mean that so many are afraid to die...

    ...I used to be like that (I mean nobody wants a tragic ending to life), but I think about my grandmother who died peacefully at 88...she told us she was just tired and ready to go "home". I loved that about her!!!

    Happy Monday!!!

    Val

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow, Val, never thought about aging and those end of life things. I think I'd want to do everything to want to live...yet on the other hand, I think if I got cancer, I'd want to just die....guess it would depend when in life it happened, if my kids were grown, let me die...if they are young then I'd fight.

      I think in general, people are afraid to suffer.

      I hope when it's time, I'm ready to go home, like your grandma.

      Delete
  15. i give thanks that my parents have chosen to age gracefully. their humility and joy with each season has been a great blessing to me and my entire family. i pray for the grace to follow their lead.

    may you, too, be open to the graces that He desires to shower you with to embrace His call and live a radical life -- ALL FOR!

    bl. teresa of calcutta, ora pro nobis.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Lena! So happy you had such a great example of aging in your life.

      Delete
  16. I totally agree with every single thing you said. I love how you are teaching your children to follow Christ!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Debbie--We had that meatloaf and everyone loved it. (except me, I don't care for things with Thyme!!)My husband does not like kechup, or things with kechup, so yours is the perfect recipe and full of flavor, like he likes!

      Delete
  17. P.S. Hope you enjoyed the meatloaf. I agree that Mother Teresa and others who serve like her are the truly beautiful women in this world.

    ReplyDelete
  18. LOVED this post and thanks for the link to that blogger..she looks cool and writes great stuff.

    I am thankful I have a husband that can see me at my worst and still call me beautiful. I tell him a ton how hot he is...we are middle aged people and YES we can still be "hot"!

    When he is all bent over, wrinkly, spotted..he will still be "hot" to me. BECAUSE of his heart.

    I do admire beauty though. Every picture and painting of Our Lady is of a beautiful young girl. Innocent and sweet. The Saints are painted as beautiful. When I look at Blessed Mother Teresa I see love...a person who truly loved. A beautiful person.

    looks fade

    This past Sunday, Father Ben(who you will be getting soon) talked about heaven and our glorified body. I still have a hard time imagining exactly what that would look like. Our same body...but glorified??!!!(NO WRINKLES!!)

    Very true, we need to teach our children how to love...and that looks..especially Hollywood type..are just people. They will get old too.

    gotta say it again..Great Post!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Christine! Can't wait til we get your priest...although, we will really miss our assoc. pastor.


      Delete
  19. That was a great post, Jamie! I love Blessed Theresa of Calcutta. You are doing a great job raising those kids of yours.

    I am so hard on myself. I grew up being told that I was ugly or "just like your mother" whatever that meant. I was never taught any of the things that you are teaching your girls. I try so hard to be good to me and not have the negative attitude that can be so harmful. I want my kids to see a confident, loving and caring person. I get what you are saying and agree with you, totally.

    Btw, Owen got a letter last Wednesday. So cute.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yay! I'll tell Angela!

      My dad used to always tell me to "suck it in" and "Are you supposed to be eating that?" I was always when I was younger,(before babies) but sure had a complex about things he said to me. So sorry about your past too. You are a beautiful woman, inside and out.

      Delete
  20. What a beautiful post Jamie. I agree with you 100%. As I told Christine in her post, you have to be very careful with modeling agencies. I was a model in HS and had enormous pressure to be thin, tall, perfect make-up and so much more. It was fun, but at the same time gave me false hopes and dreams for myself. I won't let my daughters make the same mistake.

    Beauty is what's inside. If we teach our children that from day one, they will grow up with great confidence in themselves and not worry about personal appearance, but what they look like on the inside! God Bless

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know, I told her that stuff...

      People can be beautiful on the outside, it's just that if you have the inside right, then, the outside is multiplied with beauty!

      Delete
  21. I was just thinking about this very thing today--and then I read your post! My thoughts go in the opposite direction though--I'm so worried about my girls becoming vain that I have never, ever called them pretty. I tell them they look nice if they have on a new dress or something, but I don't ever tell them they are pretty. I do think that they're pretty--and a lot of other people do too--but I'm afraid to call them pretty. Is that bad?

    I just worry so much about materialism. It's so easy for girls to get sucked in about our looks. When I was in high school, I never wore make-up. I had a lot of people on my back about that (most of them--I'm not sure why they even cared!) but I would be thinking about all the girls in the bathroom, swarmed around the mirror, redoing their make-up and criticizing their looks.

    I also remember the little girl I used to baby-sit. She was only 6 and had serious issues about her looks. She was a beautiful little girl and was always told so, but to her, she was not pretty enough.

    Anyway, I'm not saying no one should compliment their daughters--just thinking out loud. :-)

    ReplyDelete

Thank you so much for stopping and commenting!

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...