Sometimes when my kids are really tired I can sneak in a song that I like to sing while putting them to bed. We do the basics, the nursery rhymes and whatnot, but sometimes I will throw in a little something for myself. One of my go-to songs is Cindi Lauper’s “True Colors” (yes, I know Rod Stewart sang it also, but I choose to ignore his version).
Over this Lenten season I gave up color in my wardrobe and wore all black, and yes, on Easter morning when I stopped the practice I felt like this…
Yes, it felt like I was seeing color for the first time. I was at least seeing myself in color for the first time. Those six weeks felt very long, and I was fine, absolutely no complaints the first three weeks, and then I admit it was tough.
But in the last 4 or so days here’s what I have learned/discovered.
1) hair dryers make a lot of noise. Seriously, I kind of liked getting up and out of the shower and what my hair did, it did. Now I dry my bangs and the top/front of my hair- no I do not dry the bottom or the back (seriously, who has time for that?). And the hair dryer is REALLY loud! So loud I think I might cut all my hair off…
2) I don’t actually like make-up. I wear makeup on Sundays and it never quite looks right. Maybe I don’t know how to properly put it on or something, but the line between plain Jane and Vegas showgirl is finer than people realize, at least it is for me. The exception to this is tinted moisturizer, I like the redness out of my skin.
3) I like my jewelry. I really do. I particularly missed my wedding ring (I wore a simple band). But I really missed my earrings, however every time I look at myself I feel like ALL I can see is the jewelery.
4) My clothes are pretty plain. Ask me to give up patterns for Lent and it would not have been a chore. Seriously, I have greys and browns and creams, all solids. But that is actually kind of okay.
So what did I learn? Well I’m still learning.
This was an experiment in creativity, where would my creative outlet go to if I didn’t have it through clothing, etc. But as usual, it was about so much more, it was really a quest in self-worth. It was a time of self discovery and I admit, I miss it a little. I liked the simplicity.
1 Peter 3:3-4 (NIV) says “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.”
This is a constant struggle in our culture, in my life of career and self importance, and ego. (BTW- don’t read too much farther in this passage, it leads to arguable places, but this part is good). I am enough as I have learned through this process, but living into that will be a lifelong journey. But my worth will not come from clothes, hair, jewelery, or make-up. Ever.