I am often reprimanded by my best friends that I don’t prettify myself. At first, I said, if a man is interested with me, he’ll look beyond my looks and see me as a person. As I grow older, I then see the sense of being…well, beautiful. I had to admit that secretly I had the same concern. I am not pretty enough to get a partner. But instead of worrying my head about it, I thought, “Who the hell cares? I’d rather end up alone than being thought as a vain and vapid woman.”
I have to admit it’s a lonely road I’m trekking. As most of my friends are hitched or with their significant others, I will admit that there’s a secret part of me that longs to find my “mate”. As I had never had a boyfriend (I got suitors when I was younger but mostly ended in disasters), I began to wonder that either I just suck at being a woman or I really am not “attractive” enough.
Then again, these lovely women I have as friends often tell me (with force enough to drive a nail in a block of oak) that I am beautiful. Probably not in the model-type of beautiful but beautiful, all the same. I would often give them a dubious look, because well– they’re my friends.
Then again, what is beauty? It’s in the eyes of the beholder. I know that I am not pretty enough to become some beauty contest (not that I cared). But it won’t hurt, would it, to be told by a special person that you are the most beautiful person ever?
I remember a children’s story I read when I was 10. It was a Russian tale of a little girl who lost her mother while having the autumn harvest. She declared to everyone who found her that her mother’s the most beautiful woman in the world. The head townsman called all the beautiful women so the lost girl can pick her mother. Turns out, her mother’s a homely wife. The poor kid got laughed at for claiming that her mother’s the most beautiful woman but her mother’s words got me.
“We see the people we love with our heart’s eyes.”
Well, I guess that’s me being idealistic. Then again, I don’t have to strive to be as perfect as the models or celebrities. I still feel embarrassed that I get praises as effusively as I get in the office but deep inside my heart, I am glad to be appreciated the way I am.
The other day, a girl emailed me:
“I’m worried that I’m not pretty enough to get a guy. I’m single, and want a serious relationship, but sometimes I think I can’t find one because I’m not prettier.”
I wanted to exclaim, “That’s ridiculous!” But instead I thought, Well, of course you’re worried.
When I was single, I reasoned that being hotter was always better because it would give me more options. The hotter I was, the more guys would be interested in me, and the more choice I’d have in the matter. So even if I thought I looked fine, it would’ve been better to look, well, even better. (And then there is no limit—you can always be hotter, somehow.) And when I thought that I looked significantly, depressingly less than fine, I was scared, because I felt as though I might miss out on something essential.
This is not…
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