Beauty is a funny word that I probably throw around way too much. And now that I have a daughter of my own who watches my every move and soaks each in like a sponge, I have to be careful to use just the right words to instill self confidence in her, to make her feel beautiful.
I know that she's watching me do a little more than put make up on and tease and spray my hair. And when her little eyes are on me I carry myself a little differently. I don't think twice about that blemish or the way my hair doesn't curl just right on the left side.
Because every single time I get ready, my daughter always compliments me. Somewhere near the end of my routine she throws out a little compliment about my appearance.
"You got pretty long hairs."
"You so pretty, Mommy."
And I know this: she means what she says. Just ask her if she wants to share her ice cream with you. Just try to make her wear a pink bow when she thinks only purple will match. You'll know when this girl says what she means.
It's funny that her words do what nothing else can do. They strip away every single doubt I have about the way I look. They make me feel beautiful. I can see it in her eyes and I know that she believes every word that she is saying. Her face lights up when she sees me. Nothing else comes close to the beauty I see reflected in her eyes when she looks at me and gives me a sweet compliment, not the hundreds of dollars in beauty products strewn about my bathroom, not the over-processed, blonder-than-nature-intended hair, or the expensive clothes, jewelry or shoes.
It's much more than that, priceless and unexplainable. She doesn't understand self-esteem issues and she's never been picked on. She is unbiased, she doesn't judge and she has a fresh and innocent outlook on each person she sees. Many of us immediately judge when we see others. We ponder their outfit choices or immediately find some flaws. I wish I could take the feeling that she gives me with me all day. I would walk with confidence and forget about any flaws I might see. Her eyes are the perfect reflection of beauty in its truest form. She doesn't understand imperfection.
I am beautiful to my daughter because I am her mother, her best friend, the one person she can count on to make things right -- not a collection of physical attributes.
This post is part of BlogHer's My Beautiful Moment editorial series, made possible by Olay.