Redefining Beauty

http://youtu.be/USECdjN7Siw Wow. This is one of those remarkable stories that I so love to see in the news. What do you think is beauty? How do you look at beauty? I know for me this idea of 'beauty' has been a very real and often times, difficult concept for me to address in my life. We live in a society where beauty is very much idealized as this perfect specimen of a human - no flaws, perfect skin, perfect bone structure, and of course not even the slightest pinch of fat or visual imperfection. Heck there's entire industries built on beauty (the makeup/cosmetic industry alone generates 8 billion dollars a year and who even knows about plastic surgery, crazy!) This beauty bit has, as much as I hate to accept (and admit) it, been a very real struggle for me. Growing up I remember being told I was ugly and even worse, teased that I looked like a boy. The older boys in grade school (not so) affectionately nicknamed me 'boy george'. I brushed it off. or so I thought until at nearly 30 years old this unforeseen scab suddenly got torn right off - I was exposed with no where to turn but inward. My grandpa would tell me right now that i'm selling my soul to my blog, but really i'm sharing this because who's to say what beauty really is? This video touches on the medical system and how doctors are taught in the textbooks about what genetic conditions, birth deformities and disabilities are, but maybe it's really not a 'condition' or 'abnormality'. Perhaps it's just another expression of the miracle of life? Maybe if we all can try to expand on our personal definitions around beauty, we will start to see beauty in every being, every creature, every thing and in every moment. Through my own self-exploration I've realized that we can only see beauty in everyone and in everything when we see it in ourselves. I know I am blessed, but really we all are. We each are blessed in different ways and, we also each are tested through our own unique struggles; I know some would say i'm crazy and yet others would say I am ugly, but really it's not about what anyone else thinks - it's what we think, what we feel about ourselves and, what we see when we look in the mirror. We live in a society that's engrained into our minds this notion of what is beauty. I know it affects men, but as a woman I have to say how much I see it affect the amazing and beautiful women around me - so many of us struggle to accept and love ourselves simply because we don't believe we meet the status quo.  (I actually just saw another interesting short interview with Dustin Hoffman about his role in Tootsie and how it relates to this very topic, worth watching I think if you'd like a man's take on society's impact on how we view beauty). I wasn't expecting to share so much (Grandpa I know wouldn't approve), but maybe I shouldn't be so ashamed, embarrassed or quiet about my feelings, past hurts and these self-limiting beliefs I've carried around for nearly 20 years. Maybe by me speaking my truth I'll give someone the support to do the same or at least let them know they're not alone - we've all got baggage. I'm not perfect, but I'm perfect just the way I am and so is each and every one of you. I hope you'll watch this short video and allow yourself the gift of seeing beauty in an entirely new light. In so much love + joy, Jamie