Any day now I will be the father of a daughter. I am pretty sure that she will have me and her brothers wrapped around her little finger. Heidi keeps gleefully pulling tiny little pink clothes out of boxes and showing them to me. All of this is making me think of what kind of woman our unborn daughter will grow up to be. I know that she will be beautiful.
I have been thinking of how our culture has warped beauty and how the American beauty ideal messes up our daughters. Through history, beauty has taken many shapes and sizes and colors. Somehow America has decided that beauty is rail thin. Who decided this? No one seems to know. Somehow gaunt runway models with no visible muscles have become the ideal that all women are supposed to achieve. I don't want my daughter to grow up with this idea that is both not achievable and not healthy. I want her to be comfortable in the body that God gave her.
So, daughter that I have yet to meet, I have a message for you. Thin does not equal beautiful. Don't get me wrong, there are thin women that are beautiful but it is not thinness (is that a word?) that makes them so. Beauty can be tall or short, thin or curvy, pale or dark. It can be red hair, blond hair, or brunette. Beauty comes in so many ways and I am sad that, as a culture, we have created so many problems for ourselves by defining is so narrowly.
I will tell her every day that she is beautiful until she believes it. I will fight against all the messages that bombard her and tell her that beauty is defined by being rail thin. I will tell her to be herself and that beauty takes all shapes and sizes and colors. I am excited to meet her soon and tell her for the first of many times how beautiful she is.