Every woman has been given negative messages around appearance at some point. I remember feeling grown up and alluring in my bright blue eyeshadow at the middle school dance when an upper class-woman hissed into my face “You’re such a SHOWOFF!”
Church ladies whispering about what a BAD seed the girl was for dressing, what they judged as, provocative.
A boyfriend telling me I was getting fat.
“Who are you trying to impress?”
“Don’t be vain”
“She’s so CONCEITED!”
“You should be spending your time and money on helping others, not getting your hair highlighted.”
“Are you too good for our hand-me-downs?”
I was feeling sassy the day I stopped at the store on my way home. My hair was in a high teased ponytail. It was cold so I was wearing “the coat” as my girls refer to it – a loud leopard faux fur with black skinny jeans and pointy cowboy boots.
She was standing to the side of the entrance on a smoke break and and spotted me before I saw her. I looked up just in time to see her looking away, shaking her head while taking a drag on her cigarette like “you’ve got to be kidding me… who does this chick think she is?”
As I approached, she turned her hard eyes on me, exhaling her smoke like contempt. What messages must she have gotten as a child and/or adult to be judging me so openly? “Hi”, I smiled with a twinkle, non-verbally trying to convey “cold out, huh? – my coat’s ridiculous, isn’t it?” I did see her eyes soften slightly then we were off into our own worlds.
Not too long ago I would have let an incident like that set me back but I’ve learned a lot. I’m kind of old! I know that me feeling bad really doesn’t lift another person up — quite the opposite in fact! When I feel good, I raise my vibration which raises others’ vibrations.
Just last week I started receiving frantic texts from my sweet, shy 8th grader. She was being ridiculed, as only middle-schoolers can, for wearing her crazy Aztec print Athleisure pants. “Please mom, bring me my jeans!!!!! ASAP!!!! Everyone’s making fun of me! Please!!!!” So much for compassion and vibrations, I wanted to shake the little twerps by their necks and tell them their hair, clothes, FACES are STUPID! I wanted her to stand up for herself and not to let them intimidate her. But I took her some jeans — and flattened a few bike tires as I walked back to my car — just for good measure. 😉 (I made that last part up)
Let’s all encourage women and find the beauty in others! Here’s some new messages to replace the old ones: