Whenever we mention the words beauty, fashion, and style we all immediately relate to things such as makeup, clothes, and accessories. It is a shame that not many of us think of beauty as a part of our inner self. Today I want to address inner beauty and why so many of us are scared to embrace, empower, and accept our inner selves. We are scared of realizing that beauty is not attached to only our looks or style. It is not solely our exterior, but mostly our interior.
I always like to mention myself in all my blogs because I think we all can relate to each other. If I can make any one of you smile, laugh, and feel good about yourselves, it would be amazing! So let me start by telling my story of how I have FINALLLLLYYYY accepted myself from within.
When I got married, at the age of 19, I was a very petite and slim girl. I ate whatever I wanted whenever I wanted. I did join the gym at my college, but it was just a social thing. I didn’t want to gain anything from it besides a few buddies. I had my first son a year after being married and he was a big baby. I had started at 46 kg/ 102 lbs and ended with 53 kg/ 117 lbs. I didn’t think much of it because I actually liked the little weight I had put on. It, thankfully, gave me all the right curves.
My daughter was born 3.5 years later. I was struggling with ovarian cysts so this pregnancy was great news!! I always wanted more than one kid. Thankfully, the pregnancy wasn’t that bad. Despite the fact that during this pregnancy I had so much housework and that my son had started school, things were alright. I hadn’t gained much and she was tiny as well. However, my weight bumped up to 56 kg/ 123 lbs. This is when my insecurities began. I started to see all the negatives in my body. I disliked the extra skin and all the fat I saw. I didn’t like my curves anymore and started all these fad diets that made me super weak and harmed my health. I managed to finally get the weight off, not the right way, but it went to a low of 52 kg. I was finally a bit happy. The surprising part was that at 52 kg before I was happy but now, even this seemed “too heavy”. This is when I gave in to defining beauty to the outside. It was fading any image I had of beauty relating to my inner self.
A year and half later my last one was born. This was my biggest boy and I enjoyed this pregnancy the most. My other two were a handful but I loved playing with them. This gave me a sense of happiness that reflected on the baby and my mood. I think this happiness all added up and I spiked all the way to 66 kg/ 145.5 lbs. I was miserable. I hated getting dressed up. I even disliked going to parties and weddings because I thought everyone was looking at my fatness. I had everything. Alhumdulillah. But to me, I wasnt a good mother, wife, female, all because I didn’t know how to maintain myself . Apparently, in Pakistan, if a married woman isn’t slim and well-figured she is lazy and can’t manage herself. I gave in to other people and what they thought.
I let this get to me to an extent where I would thrive on others compliments. And after a while, their compliments seemed fake as well. Finally, after a few trips back and forth to the USA, I saw what beauty really is. Every time I would take the kids to the park I saw mothers of all shapes, colors, and sizes on the slides with their kids. I saw them running around and swinging all the way up. I loved that they enjoyed their life with their kids. I loved that they LOOKED happy and that they also FELT happy. I, on the other hand, was so exhausted from skipping meals and trying to lose weight, I couldn’t. I couldn’t enjoy the true beauty from within, which were my kids and family. I wanted to enjoy the rare ice cream dates with my husband, instead of having just one spoon of ice cream. I was missing out of the beauty from within, which was the true ME, and which defined my BEAUTY.
Sharing this long story wasnt to make you feel for me or anything of that sort. It is to tell you that I have realized that, yes we have to be careful of what we eat and to not indulge in all junk food, but we need to have balance. Beauty is a combination of our interior reflected on our exterior. We need to realize not all of us can be that slim girl. Or that tall girl with the perfect skin. Or even that short girl with the killer curves. We are what we are and it’s for a reason. We are all beautiful and Allah has made us this way. We need to be thankful for everything HE has given us. Why whine about what we don’t have, and instead, laugh and enjoy what we do have? 🙂
So what if I weigh 63 kg right now? I lose some and I gain some BUT I have so much energy and I enjoy myself with my kids and family. I enjoy those late night Oreo milk dunks and I enjoy those ice cream scoops in mugs ( yes, we eat ice cream in mugs 🙂 ) I love the extra weight because it helps me move throughout the day. It helps me run around cleaning, cooking, and taking care of my family. There are days that I do feel heavier or sometimes I feel that shirt makes me look fat. But hey, I do not let it define me anymore. We all can’t look good and everything. Yes, I do need to work on a lot of things, but not by skipping breakfast, having a salad for lunch, and then only a banana for dinner. But by maybe not having french toast but oatmeal. Even maybe by walking to the grocery store instead of taking the car. Smaller, more realistic, choices are the best choices.
I also realized that we shouldn’t let other people’s definition of beauty, style, and fashion define us. People in Pakistan, somehow, made my feel an extreme low. All I saw in life was getting dressed up, going to parties, talking about the latest clothes, what the girl did to lose weight, how we should try this diet, ya da ya da. Oh my!! People would run out to these designer clothing stores on SALE and RUN OVER other women. Just for a suit. I mean do we have anything left? We do not even have INNER RESPECT for ourselves or OUTER RESPECT for others. It was important to wear that designer suit to the next gathering because, oh my, what will people say?? All of this was GARBAGE!! I’m not saying this isn’t in other countries but in the USA people did their own thing. If I repeated a suit or wore the same pant/shirt again, NO ONE CARED! I could rock that shirt so many ways and people would commend me on my talent. In Pakistan, that aunty would remember the day, time, and place you repeated your attire. Yes I do buy designer clothes and shoes and bags BUT not if I can’t afford it. If I want something I will wait for it to go on sale. I refuse to buy anything too expensive. Unlike before how I didn’t care how my husband managed financially but I NEEDED ALL MY SUITS TO BE DESIGNER. I would even get upset. Yes, I was that retarded on my definition of beauty which was solely external. It was literally a social life that I have given up now. I WILL and HAVE repeated clothes. I HAVE and WILL go out without makeup. IT DOES NOT MATTER TO ME ANYMORE.
They say travelling will teach you the most, and they are absolutely RIGHT!! Going back and forth, from Pakistan to the USA and vice versa, taught me that this world is so small yet we have so much to discover. DO YOU!! Who is anyone to think you are not the PERFECT size. What is perfect, man? Please define that word to me and tell me one person that will fit that description. You can’t find anyone. You know why? Because there is NO ONE and NOTHING that is perfect. ALLAH is the only being that was, is, and will be. We are such a small percentage of the human population, yet we are so important. What we think can change everything. We all need to be positive and start feeding out beauty from the inside.
We are scared to accept our inner beauty because no one else does. We are scared becasue we don’t want anyone else to know our insecurities. We are afraid of doing anything out of the norm because what will people say. With all the makeup, clothes, shoes, bags, and gorgeous accessories we should ALL spend on our inner beauty too. We can’t see the beautiful lippies and smokey eyes, those amazing booties, gorgeous shades and poppin’ highlight unless our eyes see the beauty from within. Feed your mind and your inner soul.
Yeah, so I don’t know where I started with this and now where I’m ending with this blog. But, please, LOVE YOURSELF, YOUR INNER SELF because that is where true beauty lies.
***These religious are terms and solely my beliefs. Feel free to replace these terms with your own terminology while reading to suit yourselves. :)***
****The image in the blog is from Robert Jr Graham ****