How To Be Beautiful and Make It Last
It wasn’t until I got pregnant that I realized beauty truly does come from within. This I attribute to the fact that I didn’t feel truly beautiful for more than a few hours at a time until that point in my life. During the pregnancy, however, I was beautiful from the inside out and it was a constant. I felt an indescribable tingling which experts classify as something called happiness. Don’t get me wrong, it was miserable mornings as well as sunshine and sleepless nights as well as rainbows. But I remember feeling so good; my whole body was flooded with positivity. It was refreshing to feel so youthful, it was sheer buoyancy to go through my days with a colony of butterflies in my belly. But nothing compares to my private bliss: I would stand before the mirror in my underwear and feel pieces of my heart trickle down to the baby. I, shockingly, was radiant. Now, don’t see me as a cold woman who was changed by pregnancy; I always knew that I would love my child with everything in me, but I never anticipated the way we’d bond prior to delivery. Just me and my baby in our queen bed- I was still living in an apartment at the time because my fiance didn’t want us moving into our new family home until he completed his final tour in Iraq- it really was something magical. Now, I suppose it had some type of effect that this was a secret magic. Both coming from strict Christian families, it was unthinkable to imagine starting a family before getting married. We had our reasons, though. He knew the dangers and he made his choice, but he wanted to ensure that no matter what happened, I would never feel like I’d lost him. So he left me with a living, breathing, part of himself to have and to hold in sickness and in health. It was our secret; ultimately, this boiled down to my new state of mind being accredited only to me, causing me to feel beautiful as myself, not as myself with child, or even as the mother I was becoming. It was me, inside and out.