To the girl who thinks she’s not enough –
I see you everywhere.
I see you in the grade five, six, seven and eight girls I hang out with on Wednesday evenings, who think their self worth comes from the cute little skater boy with the charming grin. I see you in the high school girls on Tuesday nights – beautiful girls who are steadily flowering into delicate, strong, lovely ladies.
I see you in me.
Your overbearing shadow is in the haunted smile on the faces of my friends. Not only do you appear in young girls, and middle girls, and already-in-university girls, I see you in women, too. You’ve whispered lies to us our whole lives, hissing that we’re not nearly as pretty as the girl standing next to us, muttering that a boy could never love us, declaring that if we only had flat stomachs or toned arms or skinny thighs we would be beautiful.
My dear friend, I feel so sorry for you. I know you are hurting. So am I. How could you not hurt in a world so cruel? A world intended on bombarding us with pictures of beautiful girls in beautiful bikinis with beautiful hair and beautiful eyes and beautiful…
You are enough. I am enough. We are enough.
Boys don’t help with this, I know. Boys are great, and I believe that God designed us for one another, but he didn’t design them to be the ones to measure our self worth. I promise I’m not going all crazy feminist on you, but I also promise that a boy does not define your value. He’s not worth it. A boy will probably break your heart, or you’ll break his, and it will be a giant mess that promises nothing but a little pain and a lot of bullets to your self esteem.
If you allow him to define your worth, you’ll never feel satisfied or content with yourself. He wasn’t created to define you. That’s a lot of pressure on that poor boy. He has enough on his plate, learning to be content with himself.
Do you believe me when I say you are enough?
My Pinterest often makes me depressed. I scroll through pins that my friends have posted and the majority of them are healthy food recipes, weight loss tips, and work out routines advertising how to “get flat abs in less then 7 days!!!!”. Mostly it makes me sad because I’ve tried all these things before – many, many times – and I’m horrible at them. I can’t stay healthy, I’ve never been able to lose weight in my life, and my abs will never be flat in 7 days. Or 7 years.
It also makes me sad because it shows me how important these things are to us girls, and how even when we don’t quite realize it, we’re buying into the lie that if we somehow accomplish these things, we will one day be good enough.
Being healthy is good, working out is good (or so I have been told), but the girl who thinks she’s not good enough, that girl that seems to live deep down inside of us, makes it seem as though eating healthy and working out and being loved by a boy will make us beautiful. Will make us enough.
She’s wrong, my friends.
You are beautiful. You are enough. No healthy diets, strenuous workouts or cute guys included. Just you. Beautiful, plain, gap toothed, stretch marked, laugh lined, musical, tone deaf, wonderful you.
You’re enough because you’re you. So how about we tell the girl who doesn’t believe she’s enough to shut up and get on out of here, because as of today, she doesn’t live inside of you anymore.
You’re beautiful and you’re enough. You’re a masterpiece, a work of art, a glorious ray of warm sunshine on a rainy day. You’re the most beautiful song on earth.
I hope you feel beautiful and enough today. And even when you don’t feel it, I hope you know you are.
Please don’t ever forget that.
(If you need a reminder of your worth and beauty, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to remind you. Another thing: I believe that God has created us and loves us and wants us. Sometimes it’s hard to believe that, but it is totally, 100% true.)