This year for Lent I decided that I wasn’t going to give up a certain type of food, my sweet tea, or anything like that. I wanted to make a real change in my life much like I did last year when I gave up swearing for Lent. It really helped to cut back the amount of swearing that I do now. Yes, I do still curse and swear now and again, but not like I used to.
So this year I decided that I would give up calling myself fat. I know that it hurts Jay when I do that and I really don’t want to hurt him. Also, we were all made in God’s image so I am disrespecting His handiwork when I put myself down like that. I have to admit that it’s harder than I expected it to be. I never realized how many ways there were that I actually do this.
And then I saw this video:
Apparently this is an older video that Dove used for an ad campaign last year. I don’t watch a lot of TV so I never saw it. When I watched it, though, it really made me stop and think.
How many women do you know who shy away from the camera? When I was in college I watched two friends fight over a camera because one was trying to take a picture of the other. I can’t tell you how many pictures I have of friends where their hands are in front of their faces. I will admit that I’ve even done it myself.
When you do see a picture of yourself what’s the first thing that you think? “Oh, I look awful!” “My hair is sticking out all over!” “Look at how fat I am!” Do I need to go on?
Millions of dollars are spent on cosmetics, clothes, and beauty aids every year. Magazines scream at us about the latest fad diet or the exercises to do that will allow you to slim down in 10 easy minutes a day. On TV the most admired and most desirable female characters are those who are played by beautiful and very thin actresses. We are conditioned, as women, to search out our flaws in the hopes of correcting them. With all of this why is it surprising that behave as we do when a camera is turned on us?
When I was younger I loved being in pictures. My younger sister was going through our pictures during her senior year of high school because the yearbook wanted to publish baby pictures of the senior class. She had a VERY hard time finding a picture with just her in it because it seemed like I was in ALL of the pictures with her… including one that she had thought at the time she was in by herself.
We need to realize that we are all beautiful no matter what we’ve been conditioned to think. It will take some work, but I know that we can do it. We owe it to our loved ones. It hurts them when we put ourselves down in any way. Why would you want to do that? It’s going to take longer than just a Lenten season, but I know that we can do it. Remember, God made you in His image. That alone makes you beautiful. Go ahead. Be your Beautiful self.