Recently, I have seen several articles/posts made about raising girls in a World that teaches them to hate themselves. Crap. One day Ainsley is going to be told she is ugly. Crap. Ughhh. What am I going to do when she is crying because somebody made fun of her red hair? Who am I going to have to hurt for teasing her because of her fair skin? (Kidding, kinda). What can I do now, to possibly help us later? These are just a couple of questions floating around now that I realized I have a little girl who will one day feel like she isn’t good enough. Break my heart, future Ainsley.
So what do I do? Hell if I know.
I think back on my younger self and I remember all the things I wanted to change about myself. The red hair had to go. I wanted to be blonde. I used a cream to try to fade my freckles. I have tried about every drugstore sunless tanner you can find. I have dieted and seriously restricted calories.
Now, I love my red hair. I am starting to accept my pale skin. I learned to eat foods that made me healthier and when health was my goal I became happier. I had to learn to love myself. And I honestly do. Of course there are times when I feel like I am not trendy enough and have a brief relapse of self doubt. But lately, I have been focusing on who I want to be and how I want people to see me.
I want to be that person people are comfortable around. You know that woman that just loves you. She acts like she doesn’t notice a bad haircut or a few pounds of holiday bloat. I mean really, those things don’t make you who you are. You aren’t a better/worse person because of how you look. When people see me I want them to see a happy woman full of love.
That’s the woman I want to be. That’s the mom I want to be.
I want to teach my little girl to love herself. When other people are pointing out her “flaws” I want her to punch them in the face. Wait, I meant I want her to know how loved she is for who she is.
We all feel down on ourselves every now and then. But we are so much more than our looks. I don’t know how to embed this in Ainsley’s head. I hope to learn as we go. I hope to show her that I love myself. I want her to see that with red hair and fair skin, I am a good person. I am beautiful. (<that was harder to type than it should be.) I want her to know that beauty shines past your skin, from inside. I haven’t always been the kindest person or the least judgemental. But these are the things I want her to see as beautiful. These are the attributes I want to portray.
I want to be who I want my daughter to be. Crazy, how a two year old girl can teach me so much about myself.
Love yourself, love others. After all no one is more beautiful than a woman who loves and loves deeply.