I watched this clip the other day and it broke my heart. Not only how the gorgeous women interviewed disliked so many parts of their body, but how their daughters mirrored their insecurities. I am a mom to an impressionable little girl and I’m constantly aware of not commenting on body parts I hate, and there are many. For me there is a bit more of a challenge because Emma is not my biological daughter and so we have to deal with the stereotypes of ‘white’ pretty and ‘black’ pretty.
I think we all need to be a little gentler on ourselves and embrace our bits, whether it’s your button nose that you think is too flat or your gorgeous lips you think are too fat. I know I’m a lot kinder on Emma’s appearance (than my own) because she’s my daughter and as far as I’m concerned, the most beautiful girl in the world. I always tell Emma she has long, strong beautiful legs, perfect for dancing or running or gymnastics or swimming. The sparkle in her eyes tell a story of a happy little soul and it lights up a room. But to me my legs are flabby, my knees look they have trapped babies inside
My arms jiggle more than jelly, my ears are too big, my nose not pointy enough. My hair has never been my crowning glory and as for my boobs, well, let’s just leave them where they belong. On the floor! But that’s my legacy. Not the one I want to leave Emma. What I want Emma to know is:
You are beautiful. Inside, outside and upside down
Prettiness is a state of being. It’s how you feel, it’s what you say and do and how you make people feel
You are enough. You’re clever enough. Pretty enough. Funny enough. Fast enough
When I look back at photos of me as a young girl, a teenager, a twenty something woman, I’m shocked at how tiny I was, at my pretty dimple, at how pretty I actually was. Yes, I said it. I was pretty. If only I felt that then. If only someone reinforced that for me.
The Dove #BeautyLegacy campaign has made me aware that I can influence the young girls in my life, in a positive, by being mindful of what I say, about myself and others too.
Dove kindly gave me a #BeautyLegacy kit, which I’ll be using to write positive messages and placing them in my jar of happy thoughts. One day Ill be able to pass this onto Emma and on crappy days I can look at my almost full jar and realize I’m enough.
I’ve downloaded the self-esteem programmes
and interactive activities via Dove’s website, which cover everything from teasing and bullying, friends and relationships and growing up and self-esteem and I’m going to create a notice board for Emma and I to share our achievements, whether it’s trying something for the first time, finishing a book or a puzzle or having a special day out. For me, this board will be dedicated to anything but our physical appearance, because we are not our pants size or hair type. We are women. Hear us ROAR!
What #BeautyLegacy are you leaving behind?