A. and I are going out to dinner tomorrow night. Well, a dinner held by a snooty ancient coin club (snooty because you have to be invited to join the club - we're only allowed to come to the dinner because we're paying), with an accompanying lecture. I'm not sure how/why I agreed to go to this with A., but hey, it's our first night out in over a year, I think. (Ack!) It's not for lack of trying. We've planned several dates over the last few months, but something always comes up either for us or for our babysitters. I don't know what the heck I'm going to wear, but I did manage to squeak in a hair appointment, so at least my hair will look good. The rest of me will look tired and frumpy as usual. :-)
I try not to focus on my appearance too much, but I do wonder sometimes what has happened to me. When my mom was my age with three little kids, she was GORGEOUS. Long, shiny brown hair, perfect skin, curvy in all the right places. The pictures of my grandma from her 30s are like that, too. She was a babe! On the other hand, I seem to be deteoriating year by year. My skin is a mess, my hair is a giant blah, and I never lost all my pregnancy weight. I look unwell most of the time. I keep thinking that when things calm down, when R. is older, when I have more time to eat right and exercise, I'll recapture my healthy beauty. But what if that day never comes? Will I just not care at some point? I don't even have time to do my makeup in the morning without R. hanging all over me and grabbing everything. And, forget my clothes: everything I own is stained or torn or doesn't fit correctly. If I do put something on that's clean and in good shape, before I walk out the door, it's a mess from a certain three-year-old using me as a human napkin.
I'm only partly upset by all of this (despite what I just wrote). I actually love wearing my stained clothes - just like I never minded having spit-up or breastmilk stains on my shirts - because to me it says, I'm a Mom. And that's all I've ever wanted in life. I'm happy that I don't spend gobs of money on clothes anymore. I don't miss spending hours shopping because my time is so much more precious now, and I just want to spend it with A. and R. Yes, it is nice once in awhile to have a day to myself - or even 10 minutes for a shower without someone busting into the bathroom. But I don't have time anymore to spend poring over my face and makeup or fixing my hair, so I forget that I don't look my best, which means it doesn't bother me (most of the time - I am human after all). I find myself saying "Oh well!" a lot when I look in the mirror. And that's okay.
Of course, my boys always make me feel better. One day last fall, I was looking at myself in the mirror and lamenting. R. asked me, "What's wrong, Mommy?" I told him that my face was a mess. And he said, "It's not a mess, Mommy, it's beautiful!"
Thank you, Lord, for A. and R. who think I'm beautiful no matter what. Amen.