There are thousands of times someone should have told you how beautiful you are, but didn’t.
Maybe there are some glaringly obvious times like after a comment on your weight or after you were dumped. But I bet most of the moments you should have been told you are beautiful were when you didn’t even know you needed to hear it.
Like when you were in the thralls of your to-do list or after coming home from a long day or even when you were caught up in the beauty of something else, like while watching your children play or admiring spring’s flowers after a long winter.
These are examples of opportunities for someone to cut through the to-dos and the exhaustion after a crazy day and to let you know that you are beautiful even in the thick of it all. Or to take advantage of the time when you were already admiring something beautiful and tell you they are captivated by your beauty in the same way you are captivated by other beautiful things.
Unfortunately, many of these opportunities are missed.
And since expressing someone’s beauty is a relational act, it must go both ways. Just as you need to hear how beautiful you are way more than you actually do, you’ve got countless people in your life that also need to hear how beautiful they are more often than they actually do.
While I’ve missed several opportunities to tell other people how beautiful they are, there is one in particular that I need to speak on before I can let it go. It is the time I should have told my mother she is beautiful.
I invite you to step into that time when you should have to heard you were beautiful and experience the note to my mother just as she might. While these paragraphs are wholly for her, I also extend them to you in the moment of your unexpressed beauty.
A note to my missed opportunity
Hi, Mom, I want to tell you something that you should have been told a long time ago.
I’m not sure if you remember, but a couple of years ago you bought a new skirt and shoes that were a slight step out of your usual wardrobe. You tried them on one day when I was visiting and wanted my opinion.
I carefully observed the mechanics of the outfit. I felt the soft skirt and comfy soles like my thorough examination of what was socially acceptable to wear in public was more important than an enthusiastic smile, eye contact, and an honest, vulnerable confirmation of your beauty in this outfit.
After a few minutes, I came to the conclusion that I liked it, and said you looked perfectly fine.
But the truth was, you looked beautiful. Absolutely stunning. All of your inner beauty was showing on the outside which, quite honestly, was too much beauty for me to acknowledge. I wasn’t comfortable with how vulnerable I’d have to become to express just how beautiful I thought you were in that outfit.
I know you weren’t looking for an unabashed expression of your beauty that day and that I fulfilled my mission to objectively view the outfit and give you feedback. But even though you may not have been consciously hoping for anything other than confirmation that the outfit was “fine,” you deserved to hear what my heart felt, that you are beautiful.
I’m sorry I hid behind my social experiment examination that day and didn’t let you see how deeply your beauty was affecting me. But I can tell you now, you are truly, deeply, amazingly, beautiful, Momma. Thank you for sharing your beauty with me just by being who you are every single day.
Your missed opportunity
Do you recall a similar missed opportunity of your own? Perhaps with your mother, father, spouse, partner, sibling, best friend, or co-worker?
Acknowledge these missed opportunities for what they are, do what you need to do in order to let them go, and keep your eye out for the next opportunity.
I don’t think you’re going to miss it this time.