True Beauty

“Circle” by Megan Burmester

Our culture is obsessed with beauty, outward beauty. What makes a woman truly beautiful? I’ve encountered beauty in women. Here are my observations.

Women that hold their scars (visible and invisible) gently, knowing they are beauty marks. Women that can laugh in the face of adversity. Women that aren’t afraid to feel and validate all of their feelings. Women that choose not to color their hair after chemo and let the “hair glitter” crown their glorious heads. Women that face their own brokenness with courage. Women that accept their limitations. Women that come alongside others, encouraging and cheering. Women that head into the darkness of their own pain and keep walking, despite the fear. Women that are honest with themselves and others. Women who love themselves, just as they are.

When have you observed beauty, true beauty in women?

Advertisements

A Farewell to Strength

img_6597

She donned Strength as a necessity.

Strength fit her well as if tailored for her very soul.

Strength hung like a heavy overcoat, covering up her true self.

Strength whispered from time to time,

“Be the strong one.”

“Don’t show weakness.”

 

She listened; obeyed.

Strength served her well as pain and trauma abounded in her young life.

Strength became a default mechanism, an automatic response.

Others admired her strength, not knowing the cost to her battered soul.

Strength protected her; she hid behind Strength.

The time has come; Strength must slip off her shoulders and fall to the ground.

Oh, there is a wrenching, a wrenching in her soul.

Whispered words heal,

“You don’t have to be the strong one anymore.”

 

 

 

10 on 10: Lazy Saturday

Each month, I take part in a 10 on 10 blog roll.  Photographers tell a story with ten photos taken all on one day posted on the tenth of the month. This month, I documented a lazy Saturday.

Rest and Be Thankful. ~William Wadsworth

dsc01357

dsc01358

dsc01361

dsc01362

dsc01363

dsc01364

dsc01367

dsc01372

dsc01380

dsc01376

If you’d like to see some amazing photos, click on through each photographer. In fact, my friend Maite’s day is right here.

Thank you!

Offering Hope

Last week, I wrote about dashed dreams (click here if you missed it.) Thank you for the positive response. I just finished my first round with a physical therapist. The journey to get to physical therapy wasn’t encouraging; I arrived at the office with little or no hope. I didn’t know what to expect. I had many questions, the first being when can I run again? Unfortunately, the doctor couldn’t give me a definitive answer. Dang it!

But as I met with my physical therapist, Michael, he asked me about my injury. I told him my dream to run 1,000 miles in a year. He told me I was CRAZY and I knew right then, we’d be fast friends. But what Michael said next touched me to the core.

“Let’s get you running again.”

I nearly burst into tears right there. You see, Michael took it upon himself to offer me hope, THE FIRST MEDICAL PERSON IN SEVEN MONTHS TO DO SO! In that moment, hope grabbed me.

dsc01124

Look at that smile! How can you not be hopeful working with a smile like that?

Michael’s statement impacted me deeply.  Why? Because when most of my hope was gone, someone came alongside and offered hope. It healed a place in me that felt worthless. Up ’til that point, I honestly felt so alone.  When he said that statement, I felt encouraged;  seen, not-so -alone. I felt maybe, just maybe, I’ll run again.

Michael’s statement also challenged me. How can I do this for others? It meant the world to me and I haven’t forgotten his kindness. Can I come alongside others in the same way? Lord, let me be an injection of hope for those in need.

Michael, if you are reading this, thank you for offering me hope.