It’s a beautiful, snowy Sunday morning in the far northern reaches of California. Much to our surprise we are awake and alive, largely the result of all the coffee already making its way cozily down the back of our throats. The slight chill in the air tells us this day is just full of promise. But there’s something else too - hope.
Hope that the past months, weeks, and days spent making this project a reality will not be spent in vain. Hope that the words which flow from this blog will grace their readers with nothing more than encouragement and inspiration. Hope that somehow, someone out there will see this and begin to to realize that she (or he) is more beautiful than she knows, not because of how she looks, but simply because of who she is in this exact moment of time. That’s a lot to ask, we know, but we’re asking anyway.
Many conversations ensued between the two of us leading up to the realization of this website and blog – conversations about beauty, body image, insecurities, values, and what we personally believe to be true for and about ourselves. DO NOT BE MISTAKEN! You are hearing from two women who have spent an AWFUL LOT of time telling themselves horrible lies. At one time or another, we have bought into the lie that we need to fit a certain mold in order to be considered beautiful. We’ve not only heard the world’s message that we could or should be better than we are right now, but we have, previously and presently, taken that message to heart and pursued it with great effort.
To be frank, we’re done.
We’d like to know when beauty became something that was defined so heavily by appearance. Sure, the way that we look is undoubtedly part of who we are, but aren’t we really the sum of many, many different and equally important elements: our values, our beliefs, our God-given gifts, our self-taught talents, our desires, our curiosities? If we spend too much of our time chasing physical “beauty”, aren’t we going to miss out on the beauty present in all the other things that make us unique individuals?
Taking these questions to heart, we are obliged to contemplate how our CHOICES shape us as well... one of which is to CHOOSE what we believe about ourselves. It’s called body image, but it is more than just how we see ourselves. It has a lot to do with the value that we attribute to the body we have, not the one that we want. After all, it’s in this body that our raw, unadulterated beauty resides. We can either choose to ignore it in pursuit of the outward beauty promoted by what seems to be EVERY platform of media and social interaction today, or we can stop for a minute, take a deep breath, and embrace ourselves just as we are – scars, stretch marks, character flaws and all.
Wild, Wild Beauty is largely about making healthy choices, but we want to redefine what that means. Since becoming mothers, we’ve realized the importance of making healthy choices because we aren’t the only ones affected anymore – our choices affect our family as well, the people we hold most dear. But we don’t believe that those healthy choices are the same as those being made by many others--fueled by physical dissatisfaction and an exhausted effort to become better than who they already are. Instead, these healthy choices are things like choosing to love ourselves for who we are and not who we wish we could be, seeking to strengthen the body that we do have in more than just a physical sense. We’re talking about making healthy choices in regard to every aspect of our lives, from the food we put into our bodies to the words that come out of our mouths to the products of our creativity (this blog included!).
We can remember a time long ago where each of us begged God, with tears streaming down our faces, to make us beautiful. We were so preoccupied with our own insecurities that we never noticed that he had already answered that prayer. It breaks our hearts that the same cry is heard from the mouths and hearts of women everywhere today. Entire industries have devoted themselves to bringing women THE solution to their problems:
“We can give you more beauty, more money, more power, blah, blah, blah, if you just give us your money and follow our carefully-crafted, universally-applicable program.”
We’re calling bullcrap.
Not that these programs won’t do exactly what they promise, but we have to ask ourselves, “Is this even the place that I should be looking for these answers?” What message are we buying into? Is it really a message of hope and encouragement? Or is that a facade while the real message (though unintended) is that we really ought to be better, that who we are in this very moment, as God has made us, isn’t good enough by someone’s standards? Does this cyclical persistence of seeking self-improvement genuinely create the peaceful nature we’re striving for, that we were designed for even? Maybe we’re wrong, but the whole thing just doesn’t seem to lead to a life of contentment.
This project is about learning to value ourselves, and to share in that adventure with you. We want to share our lives and passions with you, to make you a part of our family, and to invite you to share in the conversation about what it means to be a woman, a sister, a mother, a daughter, and a friend. Wild, Wild Beauty is a project with distinct missions and values (also on our homepage):
- To show women (and men too!) how flawlessly beautiful we are, despite all our flaws.
- To demonstrate that a little belief can go a long way.
- To prove that the world will always be ours for the taking, and our individual possibilities are endless.
- To remind us that we all need a little (a lot of) grace, toward ourselves and those around us.
- To learn to accept the ebbs and flows of life as part of what makes us breathtakingly beautiful.
- To encourage consideration of who or what we let define us.
- To consider the importance of CHOICE in our lives and the impact our choices have on ourselves and the people around us.
- To embrace the reality that we are all beautiful simply because God created us so; our beauty is innate, non-negotiable, wild, and won't be hindered by the exploitation of our insecurities within society today.
Above all, we value faith. We sincerely hope that this is evident to you through the words that we write on our blog. It is the faith that we possess in God our Creator that enables us to have faith in ourselves. And even on the days when that faith seems small, it still goes a long way to get us through the toils and stresses that seek to distract us away from our wild beauty.
Wild, Wild Beauty is our platform for creatively seeking and expressing the crazy and unabashed beauty that lies within our hearts. We will share our hearts and minds, as well as recipes, crafts, devotionals, and other content specifically designed to promote our mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being – content designed to nourish us from the inside out. More than that, this project is a place to find peace and rest in the beauty given us by God, and to bask in the beautiful life we have right here, right now.
We are so excited to step forward in this journey of discovery! If nothing else, we are so completely ready to embrace ourselves and take hold of the freedom that comes from accepting ourselves for the wild, beautiful creatures that we are!
So please, DO YOU. Wild, beautiful you.