So maybe I was just cute but for the sake of this post (and my ego) we're gonna think pretty. In those days, I defined pretty by a few important factors; My tight, moderately ripped abs, flawless skin, clean hair, daily showers with perfumy soaps, small but perky breasts with overly optimistic nipples, and a turn-key vagina. By that I mean toned and heavily pampered (clears throat). There had been no humans birthed from it and I had no idea that it would one day be the portal for two cubs.
I reveled in the many suitors I had knocking down my door, the plethora of invites to lavish parties, and the modeling contracts eagerly awaiting my signature. Can you tell I have an active imagination?
But honestly, my SELF-esteem was borderline unhealthy (conceit) and I took many things for granted. You can blame it all on blissful ignorance. I LOVED spending money on clothes and things I didn't need. Today it's all clutter. I had no plans for the future beyond the next weekend. And then, motherhood happened. Freedom was gone. Fancy-free escaped me. And along with it, in my eyes, pretty packed up and moved out.
Motherhood had its way with me and I was like a ship on a raging sea. My sails, and old ways of coping, were no longer useful. I had a little one relying on me when I didn't even know what to do with myself. How was I supposed to "teach" this human to be exceptional? How was I gonna manage being a mom? How was I supposed to buy my clothes, shoes, and purses if I had to buy diapers and wipes all. the. time? What about beauty sleep? And dear God, how was I gonna get rid of the 1-2 stretchmarks I was left with? You see... blissful ignorance.
I was still TRYING to hold on to pretty. Somehow.
Fast forward 6 years and I was gifted with another cub. Multiply the sleepless nights, responsibilities, diapers, wipes, etc, by infinity. Don't like math? Don't worry. I'm not gonna quiz ya. But you DO get my point right?
By my second portal birth, I was accustomed to not doing for me like I once did. I was used to bags under my eyes and enough dark circles to play Duck, Duck, Goose. My "ripped abs" were more like ocean ripples and my breasts were happy just to be there. As for stretch marks? Who's counting right?
I look at pictures now and I don't recognize THAT girl. She's pretty. She's obviously well dressed and has been on a few dates. She has a self assurance that screams "Young and inexperienced!" There's no child in sight. And the sheer appearance of her nails, hair, and perfectly applied eye shadow let me know that she's only focused on herself. She is obviously not a mother, and therefore, I don't really recognize...her.
Today, I don't care about the petty things I once did. I still like perfumy soaps but at my age I have to be careful. Those soaps lead to itching in places I don't wanna scratch. Sleeping is the grandest party I care to attend and my cubs are now my suitors! They pursue me endlessly. I love that! As for those stretch marks, they are my tiger stripes. They tell the world that I'm an animal with a fierce bite! I've been in battle and will fight for what's mine.
|My wild cubs and I.|
Yes. Once upon a time, I WAS pretty (okay cute). But today, I. AM. BEAUTIFUL.
I'm not young and perky but I'm resilient and wise. I'm raising little wild ones who are exceptional in MY eyes and I'm teaching them to be who they are, to love themselves. I'm sure they'll one day see themselves as pretty. But if I can have even a small hand in helping them to understand true beauty, I will have done my duty as a mom.
"Once upon a time..." is overrated anyways.
Today, this moment, is all that REALLY matters.
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