Monday, July 23, 2012

...and Love Is Better than Hate

What a cheesy blog title, fits. 

This morning, I treated my daughter to a coffee shop visit before we went our separate ways.  Because she's only seven, she keeps up a fairly steady stream of chatter.  This morning was no different.  Between bites of a Nutella-filled croissant, Rhiannon talked with me about a plethora of things, "Why did your mom always cut your hair when you were little?  Is that why you always cut it now?  Why do you always say my hair looks like I'm training for a career at the Co Op?  I think I look more like you than Dad.  I wonder when I'll see Esther again..." 

And then...silence.

"There's a woman over there with kind of a beard, Mama."

This small remark launched a discussion about transgendered people and being our own true self:

Me: That's because she was born a boy, but feels more comfortable living her life as a woman. 
Rhiannon: Why?
Me: Sometimes, even though our body parts tell us one thing, our heart and soul tell us something else. She'd rather be a woman. There are so many different reasons why.  

Rhiannon: Maybe she can wax her face then. [That's my girl - daughter of a cosmetologist!]
Me: Sometimes people choose to have surgeries to change their bodies or take hormones to do things that would stop beards or change their voices, but they're very expensive. 

Rhiannon: That's too bad. I think people should do what makes them happy. And being a girl is fun; we get to be pretty!

Not once did she say anything derogatory.  She seemed to really understand that our looks/bodies should not dictate who we are. 

This got me thinking on a conversation I had with a friend on Friday about makeup and dressing well.  I have this weird hangup about makeup and trying too hard because, well, because of my mom.  When I was nine, she started harping on me to wear makeup.  NINE!  While other kids rebelled by doing drugs and drinking, I refused to "be pretty."  I still don't wear makeup unless it's a special occasion or I feel particularly low on self esteem, which is a bit jacked-up considering I'm a stylist and own a salon.  My friend said, "Not that you aren't lovely every day, but I have to ask: Why wouldn't you try to be as attractive as possible?  You're insecure, but you don't have any reason to be."


So I wore a bit of makeup this weekend.  And got a lot of compliments.  It was...nice.

When others are striving to live as they see themselves in a world that won't accept them, why am I shlumping around like a potato?  Shouldn't I like what I see in the mirror? (Especially since I work in front of one...?)  Shouldn't my boyfriend be proud to show me off?  Shouldn't I live to my total potential?


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