Looks are Deceiving

by: Ashley Roman

I know you've heard it before- our culture is overly concerned with appearance. Everyone is after the hottest new trends and ways to look younger. Sex sells. Blah, blah, blah.

I have been subconsciously buying into this deceit for my whole life.

I remember in first grade my friend had a pair of jelly-shoes (remember those?!) and I was so jealous. I begged and begged until I finally got a pair. They still weren't as cool as her's... I even remember in first grade thinking I was chubby. Can you believe that! A six year old thinking she's chubby and comparing herself to other girls. Oh how I wish I knew the lies I was believing. I wish I could go back and hug my younger self and tell her how beautiful she was. I wonder if that would have changed how I think about myself now.

Our culture sets women up for failure. We will never achieve the exact look we want. We will never have perfect outfits every day. We will have bad hair days. We will never be as toned, tight, or in shape as Jillian Michaels. Our culture wants to make sure we never 'arrive' there- what would society be able to sell us or convince us of if we were perfectly satisfied with who we are?

I have spent more than fifteen years of my life thinking and worrying about my appearance. MORE THAN FIFTEEN YEARS. When I was laying in bed the other night reflecting on the meaning of life, which I do quite often, that thought popped into my head. That's a lot of thought energy wasted. I was lying there trying to figure out what to wear for work the next day. Like anyone actually cares what I wear... how silly... but I always try to look a little fashionable. I've wasted so much time and life thinking about those things.How much time have you used obsessing about your weight, clothing, new hair style?

Be honest with yourself.

Enough ladies. This needs to end.

We were made for more!

How can we help each other? How can we support one another to stop this cycle of belief? For myself, I will tell every six year old girl I see how beautiful they are. I will tell them how special God made them. I will tell them how everyone is different, and it's really exciting. I'll let them know appearance doesn't matter. I will set an example for my future daughters by living this truth.

I pray for you and I pray for myself. I pray we can wake up each morning with love in our hearts and joy in our eyes when we look into the mirror. I pray we can have compassion for ourselves when we step on the scales and when we go up a dress size.