What does real beauty mean to you?
Interesting question; and oh-so-much-fodder-for-debate.
Five years ago, I would probably have jumped to defend the school of aesthetics when asked what beauty means. I would have sung the same tunes that advertisements and popular culture hammer incessantly into our heads. And while I don’t exactly suggest you get fat now, I will not judge you, just because you don’t look like a product of the glamour factory.
Age, crows’ feet and grey hair put a lot of things into perspective. When your body starts acting in ways beyond your control (and I’m not really Madonna to want to obsessively control it), you begin to learn to find and appreciate beauty outside of it.
Through a marriage, childbirth and a couple of years of parenting, I have gone from a makeup-diet-clothes-obsessed girl to a family-career-oriented woman. Appearances have ceased to matter (much). Disheveled hair and clothes on most occasions – check; stretch marks – check; spare tyre – check; unthreaded eyebrows – check; and how could I forget my faithful friends, the dark circles – check. I ‘look’ just like your or anyone else’s mom, don’t I?
Yet, have you ever noticed how, for the longest time in your life, your mother is the most beautiful woman in the whole world? She is probably replaced by the woman/man you love, and then, perhaps, by the child(ren) you bear. The most beautiful person of your life is almost always the one you love best.
Now, think back and try to remember who was Miss Universe in 2005 (no Googling!). Too far back? OK, how about Miss Earth in 2008? How about the vital stats of umm… Jennifer Aniston? No? Me neither. For all their glitz, beauty queens and movie stars remain in our memories for as long as the circus lasts. The most beautiful people in our lives, our little worlds, however, are not who the pageants and glossies declare.
The constant of all kinds of beauty is really, love.
Like a child to a mother, a lover to his lover, a deity to its devotee, a cause to its activist, a pet to its master, a muse to an artist, the examples are endless. When you truly love someone, their less than perfect bodies, ideas and minds become insignificant. There is no escaping the adage that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Because it is in a pair of loving eyes that real beauty is born.
(This post is an entry for the Indiblogger Real Beauty contest)