I have a friend who is struggling with an eating disorder. She's awesome. And she's chronicling her journey for all to read, which I find incredibly brave. (You can check it out on her blog here.) After reading her latest blog post, I had some thoughts. I commented on her post, but I thought I would share here, too.
Before reading the blog post, I read a quote posted by a different friend on Facebook. It was from the Velveteen Rabbit. The Rabbit asks the Skin Horse how to he got to be real. And this is part of the Horse's answer:
"You become. It takes a long time. That's why it doesn't happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don't matter at all, because once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand." (from the Velveteen Rabbit)
I am not perfect, but I am real. I am a real mom. A real sister. A real, charitable person. I have bags under my eyes, the skin on my face and pretty much everywhere is sagging, and I have a few extra pounds because running children everywhere and planning ward Christmas parties and writing books and baking cookies for the people who just lost a father and husband and so many other things, is time consuming. I don't exercise as often as I'd like, I sometimes have to eat what's available and not what's healthy. But I'm real. So I can't be ugly. Except to those people who don't understand. The trappings are irrelevant. What's inside is what's real. Those who love us, see what's real. And hopefully one day, we can be the ones who see that, too.