“Everyone’s talking about the Victoria’s Secret fashion show … how this one girl wore this multi-million dollar outfit …. and how amazing they all are ….”
The lights in my daughter’s eyes dash in the night. We are up too late, pillow talk, chewing on all things girl: how it’s hard to admit when we are wrong, how friend hurts run deep, how some girls seem to get everything they want … and does that mean happiness?
We are treading the waters of the life I’ve known. It is from this pain that I have written — the pain of feeling like I was never enough.
We talk about the real stuff: how love is all the soul really needs; how persevering through the thick of life makes a woman beautiful; how honor and respect are the prettiest adornments we can wear.
We learn the hard way, because the longing to be beautiful is within us, and because Jesus is and always will be the utmost answer on anything Beauty.
When I wrote More Beautiful Than You Know, I wrote to the girl I used to be; the girl my daughter now is; and the girl who was at my house yesterday, the one who didn’t want to take off her shirt to go in the pool because she stated bluntly, “I don’t have a bathing-suit body.”
I wanted to jump out of my skin and hold her — cup her heart and heal it — flood truth into the blood in her veins so that she would know she is More Beautiful Than She Knows. I wanted her to define beauty in her generosity, in her laughter that fills the sky, in her eyes which pool with humility and honor. I wanted to redefine beauty for her, in her, through her.
And I will ask my daughter if I can give my book to her friend Bella, the one named Beauty who thinks she’s not. Because I wrote it for her, because of her, and because one time I stood being measured by a line of judges against another girl and her bathing-suit body beat mine. That was the last time I felt good enough in a bikini, I’ll tell you that.
We write what we know. Write from your pain. Your core pain. The more you do, the more the wound will heal — and it heals best when it becomes healing to another.
I guess there is still a scar there, because when Bella only eats fruits and vegetables while the girls with “bathing-suit bodies” guzzle sweet tea and potato chips, I want to make a big banner of my book’s cover and hang it over the pool. I want it to say, “Bella: YOU ARE MORE BEAUTIFUL THAN YOU KNOW.”
I know this blog should teach you something about marketing or managing your writing schedule or turning posts into promotion, but today, I just want to challenge you to write what you know, and write for one person who could be changed by your story. Write for Bella. Write for me. Write for the one you see in your mind’s eye who needs healing from the thing that hurt you.
And then, do that again. And again. And again.
One day, that person you wrote for, might be sitting at your kitchen table eating vegetables — or about to jump in your pool and fill the sky with laughter.