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Posted by on Jan 14, 2016 in Motherhood | 2 comments

Another Kind of Beautiful

Can I be a little transparent with you today?

I like to look nice. What girl doesn’t, right? I have always enjoyed standing in front of my closet and piecing together a cute outfit, complete with all the right accessories. I am a sucker for trying the latest and greatest beauty product. If the product’s description says it will make me look younger, brighter, fresher or like Jennifer Anniston I add it to my shopping cart. I am actually considering adding a beauty element to this blog – a little space where we can chat about our favorite girly products and fashion trends because I genuinely enjoy talking about those things. Its fun!

But can I tell you something? The pressure I sometimes place on myself to attain outward beauty often leaves me frustrated and discouraged during this season of motherhood. As I strive to meet the ever-changing needs of a toddler and a 6 month old, I am usually left feeling rather frumpy. My outfits are almost always thrown together (& if I’m lucky, they are thrown together from the clean pile of clothes and not the dirty one) and I rarely leave the house feeling put together. If you ever see a photo of me looking somewhat decent, just know that either I woke up 2 hours before my children to pull that off or my house was destroyed by Atlas during the time it took me to get ready. Chances are if I look nice, my house most likely looks like it has been ransacked. Its a catch 22 sort of thing.

Another Kind of Beautiful

When preparing to go somewhere these days, my thoughts are filled with things like, “Did I remember to grab Boo Boo the Bear because Atlas will freak if we leave without that bear? Did I grab an extra pacifier for Andi? Atlas – why did you just take your shoes off? I just put your shoes on. Come here and sit down so I can put your shoes back on.” Its only once we are out the door and the kids are secured in their stroller that I think, “Shoot! Forgot my mascara and my lipstick! That makes 5 days in a row.” I would love to wear big statement earrings, but that’s not worth the risk right now, as Andi is currently in a “grab & pull” phase. This also explains why my hair is almost always in a pony tail. Well, that + I’m in a perpetual state of sweating these days since I’m always holding at least 1 child.

Another Kind of Beautiful

On Wednesday mornings the kids & I attend a Bible Study Class that requires us to be out the door by 8:15am. I typically get up around 5:30 or 6 to make sure that happens. Thanks to a massive spit up situation + a toddler tantrum, I quickly found us running behind schedule today. The first thing that gets cut from the routine is my make-up. I threw on some tinted sunblock and concealer and forgot the rest. My hair desperately needed to be washed, but I thought, “Meh – I can make it one more day.”  I immediately regretted that decision when it came time to style my hair – it was practically stuck to my head. #sogross I made the super smart decision to wear white pants and managed to get chocolate on them before we were even out the door (the reason why there was chocolate out before 9am isn’t important to the story). As I struggled to hook one of my bracelets on my wrist while holding Andi and telling Atlas for the 7th time that he could not ride the dog, I finally threw the bracelet back in my jewelry box and under my breath mumbled, “Screw it. This is so not the season for jewelry.”

And you know what? Its really not. And that’s okay.

I love these precious words from Ecclesiastes, “There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under Heaven…He has made everything beautiful in its time.” 

I will have plenty of time to curl my hair and contour my make-up when my kids go to school one day (at least, I think I will?), so today I should enjoy the cuddles that come with this current season. I do believe there is a time for having well-manicured hands, perfectly threaded eyebrows and regularly washed hair, but that’s not the kind of beauty I’m meant to glean right now. The season I’m in is about becoming another kind of beautiful.

For me, this season of life isn’t about looking fresh. It is about being faithful.

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.” Colossians 3:23 

It isn’t about wearing an outfit that is fabulous. It is about bearing fruit.

“The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” Galatians 5:22-23

This isn’t the season to shine. This is the season to serve.

“She gets up while it is still dark; she provides for her family.” Proverbs 31:15

This is the season to sacrifice. To be selfless. To surrender my ideals in exchange for the grace that can be found in all of life’s daily imperfections. And how incredibly beautiful is that?

Of course, I’m going to continue to get dressed up and wear my highest heels whenever I get the chance because I find it fun. And when I do, you better believe I’m going to post pictures documenting that rare event on Instagram. 😉

Mama's Day Out

But when I’m going about my daily life – my real life – the life that happens in-between all those tiny square pictures you see on social media –  and I’m rocking my sweatpants while cleaning up messes, comforting fussy babies, wiping snotty noses & serving the precious family God gave me, I’m going to remember that this season is for another kind of beautiful. ♥

And just between you and me, this is what my real life looks like…

Another Kind of Beautiful

Mix-matched pj’s. Messy bun. Baby on hip. Working hard to figure out how to open the container holding the dessert with only one hand.

P.S. We made it to our Bible study on time this morning and while I forgot my coat (which was a bummer because it was 22 degrees outside), I didn’t forget Boo Boo the Bear. #Priorities

 

2 Comments

  1. This post is so well written, Ashley! I can’t help but think of my sister with her 3 boys. Although this stage in her life rarely offers her the opportunity to get dolled up, she’s truly one of the most beautiful people I know, inside and out – and seeing the way she approaches each day with so much grace and patience reminds me that the truest and deepest kind of beauty shine so brightly outwardly from within. Real life is the best life 🙂
    Kate @ Baking In Yoga Pants recently posted..January GoalsMy Profile

  2. THIS. SO MUCH THIS!! Amen, sista! I feel you on every account. I love reading your stuff because you simultaneously leave me laughing out loud AND in deep thought. Love you <3

    And this motherhood to two young kiddos is such a beautiful thing…..I love it! It definitely only leaves just a smattering of photos to post on Insta though, HAH! #truth
    Annette@FitnessPerks recently posted..Baby Lexi: 4 Months UpdateMy Profile

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