I love pearls for some uncanny, against-my-generation reason. I imagine that when I wear them, I can fool a run-of-the-mill stranger into believing I drink sparkling water in a champagne flute with my breakfast. I feel a bit more glamour, a bit less "mom-of-young-boys" (who scream from the bathroom every time they need their backside wiped).
There’s an association I suppose. I transport into a 60’s era woman of charm, one who takes herself seriously but can just as easily be found giggling in the corner at a party, one elegantly gloved hand covering meticulously red-painted lips.
Like Audrey Hepburn.
I envision her, thirty-something, sitting on a bar stool in my kitchen, her legs crossed, all gorgeous and put-together. Her Breakfast at Tiffany’s style is intact and a tiara perches high on her head, next to a careful bun. Classic. Timeless, like the pearls resting gently against her collarbone. I doubt she’ll like my cooking, but I’m sure my boys will manage to entertain her and then she’ll say something lovely and self-deprecating so that I’ll want her to move in next door.
In an interview, Audrey's son, Luca, explained that she never understood why people thought she was so beautiful. In her opinion, her feet and nose were both entirely too large for her body. She supposedly lamented about her petite bust as well.*
Can you believe that one of the most stylish women of all time had such body image hang-ups in the quiet places of her mind?
It's not so far fetched. Hepburn, like so many of us, is walking proof that no one is spared the discomfort of insecurity. Our culture pressures healthy, capable, and driven women until we're shrunk down to size "invisible".
I'm no Hepburn, but just the other day, I experienced insecurity in action. I ran into a friend who said to me, “I saw you at the gym today. You looked really strong. Good form, girl.” I inspected her earnest face and could feel the authenticity in her words.
Uncomfortable with the compliment, it took just an instant to shrink away from it. Before I could even think my words through, I heard myself say, “Oh…thanks. I had to work really hard today. I’ve had a little “too much fun” this summer and have five pounds to drop.”
Cue the fail buzzer! What?!?
I walked away from the conversation distraught over my ingratitude for a strong, healthy body, embarrassed by my poor mental state, and kicking myself over my inability to accept a simple word of kindness. I had traded my pearls for a string of popcorn.
I know I'm not the only one who's gone through this!
So. I'm challenging myself. This very day, I'm making trades:
1. Gratitude > Critical spirit,
2. Confidence in God's strength in me > Insecurity,
3. Vision > Stress of "now"
Won't you join me? I'd love to hear how you're "making trades" below!
In pearls and sneakers,
2 Corinthians 10:5
We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
For the LORD will be your confidence And will keep your foot from being caught.
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.
Photo Credit: Anna Demianenko
M.S. in Marriage and Family Therapy. Earns Crossfit participation trophies. Disaster cook. Enthusiastic wife. #Boymom. Clutches her faith, not her pearls.