This week my 8 year old labored over a drawing for what seemed like an eternity. She draws a lot but this drawing seemed to be more serious. She was putting her heart into every single detail.
When it started it was a beautiful pair of eyes and it became clear she was drawing a lady. I remember this age fondly. The age when you begin to draw detailed people and faces instead of stick figures with a few of their limbs missing. And growing up as a girl, one of my favorite things to draw were fancy ladies.
She proudly showed me her drawing and it was truly beautiful. Then I curiously noticed that her lady had a nose piercing.
I got my nose pierced about 5 years ago. I had wanted to do it for a long time but something held me back. I wasn’t sure it was me. Now that I have had it for this many years it is just a part of me I don’t even think about.
But as I noticed it on her drawing I remembered that most of her drawings of “fancy ladies” lately have had their noses pierced. And then it hit me. My daughter thinks I am beautiful.
What an awesome moment right? Except the weight of what that means also hit me. For my daughters, I their main standard for what is beautiful.
I am that standard when I am dolled up for a night out with their daddy. I am also that standard when I stand sideways and lament the extra cushion around my middle. I am that standard when I am confident running errands with limited makeup. And I am that standard when I complain about my boring straight hair. The straight hair they inherited.
That deafening voice that tells me I am not pretty enough or thin enough needs to be silenced. Certainly I don’t need to voice those thoughts out loud, but it also needs to be quieted in my head. Because my girls they are watching and listening. And I don’t want them to see themselves as anything but beautiful. Especially the one drawing this picture for me. She looks so much like her mommy.