Young woman running through the forest--
Do you know you are beautiful? Your feet pounding the packed earth, legs striding powerfully, arms slender and strong.
Do you see me? Concentrating on your breathing, your pace, breaking your best time. Perhaps your mind is considering career problems, relationship troubles, the myriad ways you think you're not good enough.
Do you notice I'm here too, or are you myopic with worries: you aren't smart enough, thin enough, fast enough?
Your eyes glance off me as you speed past in your haze of athleticism, perfectionism, and self-doubt.
If I told you that I see you, that you are beautiful, strong, and worthy, would you think me insane?
I know you are beautiful, and one day you will know it too. Know it as you walk through the forest you once ran through. Know how beautiful you were today, even before half a lifetime had tested you, gracing you with care lines, stretch marks, and weak joints. Making you even more beautiful in the living of your life.
When I ran through these woods, did I see the walkers? Did I nod? Did I smile? Slower now, after breaking my foot three times and developing tendonitis in both knees, I don't mind stopping to greet an old woman walking with her dog. She smiles and wishes me a pleasant day.
Old woman walking through the forest--do you know you are beautiful?