Loving Myself without Make Up for My Children was inspired by a piece written by Violet’sMama called “I’m Not Pretty Enough”. Whether you have children or not, this is a piece that should be read.
My daughter, 3, has started asking me to straighten her gorgeous and curly locks- that’s what she sees me do, and she wants to be just like me.
My daughter, and my son, ask me to put make-up on them, too. That’s what they see me do, and they want to be just like me.
I don’t want my children to be just like me though. I don’t want them to think that they need to alter themselves before they leave the house. I don’t want them to think that they are less deserving of partaking in the world because their faces are red and splotchy, or because they are carrying extra weight, or because their nose is crooked.
I want them to feel comfortable in their own skin instead of trying to climb out of it.
My daughter and son want the real me- not the covered up, straightened out me. They want to see my skin and touch my curly hair. They want to connect with me without barriers and sheaths.
I suspect that it is only a matter of time before my morning routine of straightening and covering is forgotten, thanks to Violet’s Mama. It is hard for me to believe this though, because when I look in the mirror at my unpainted face and curly hair, I see ugly. I see messy. I see out of control that is shining through the red in my face.
For today though, I will not wear make-up. Some days I will not feel strong enough to be so exposed. On those days I will straighten my hair and put on my make-up while my children are not looking. This will bother me- because now I know. I get it. I understand.
For the sake of my children I am forced to learn to love myself exactly as I am. This is daunting and scary and overwhelming. I am smart enough to know though, that the inner peace and outward joy that this brings will be far greater than the fear I am feeling now.
This process will require inner work and self examination. There will be lots of consciously overriding thoughts- the ones I have believed for 38 years.
I have done this before when I changed the way I parent, so I know that it is possible. I also know that the result will be something unexpected and far greater than I could anticipate.
Mostly, I want the result to be two children who love themselves exactly as they are. For this, I am willing to do all of the work in the world.
I am so grateful to Violet’sMama for writing and sharing “I’m not Pretty Enough”. It is, what I suspect will be, a life altering piece for me. Thank you <3