Mirror mirror full of lies ~ every word you speak
Every day the princess heard the quiet whispers from her mirror “You are common. You are nothing. You are invisible.” And she believed the lies. She not only believed them, but she became comfortable with them. Somehow it was harder to believe they weren’t True, than it was to believe they were.
What she didn’t understand was, in order to believe lies that denied her lineage, she had to choose to believe them. The lies themselves could hold no power over her, it wasn’t until she choose to believe them that their power was manifest. And so it was – day in and day out she granted power and authority over her to something that was not real.
As the lies became Truth in her mind, it meant she had to build thicker and thicker walls to protect her heart. No longer could she freely trust people – no longer could she allow them access to her horribly damaged heart. So with every passing day her Father tarried, the hedge surrounding her heart grew more thorny and more impassable.
“Turn sideways – stick out your tongue – hey, you’re a zipper!” or “Good thing you’re not a red head, or we’d think you were a thermometer.” All these were some of the kind and gentle things I heard from friends (?) and other school mates. My “favorite” however became one I heard more often than any other, “Ah, you’re a pirate’s dream girl – you’ve got a sunken chest.”
I was indeed a tiny thing. At the time I met Jeff, at age 19, I weighed 95 pounds… most of the time. I generally gained a pound or two during my period. I was 5′ 6″ tall. For someone whose entire understanding of beauty was determined by the size of her bust, the final comment was more painful than words could describe. With each “joke” it became more and more necessary to protect my heart.
There are many different times in my life that comments like that were made, that still hold the power to wound me. I have made a concentrated effort to forgive them. (Some of them I didn’t even remember until the Lord started working on my heart) For example, the young man who refused to dance with me in gym class because I didn’t have enough bust to qualify for a girl. Or the guy in the restaurant that howled at me when I walked by. (Although, granted, I likely need to ASK forgiveness for that one, rather than just extend it. It likely didn’t honor the Lord for telling the guy, “Congratulations Buddy, it’s men like you that makes lesbianism look so good to so many women.” huh?! I did warn you – TMI!!)
The part that has been hardest for me is dealing with the things that Father is showing me of the times I withheld myself from other women – women who were in need – just because they were so beautiful and I was so plain. One memory in particular is of a gorgeous young woman who was bawling because she had just found out that at age 30 she was going to have to have a hysterectomy and she wanted another baby first. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t comfort her, I couldn’t speak words of compassion (mind you, I was JUST coming out of 6 yrs of being considered infertile, so this was a pain I knew and knew well!! TOO well!!) and the only reason that was in my heart was that she was too beautiful.
I don’t know for sure why that reasoning became mine, but it did. Time and time again I would avoid the beautiful women and befriend those that were more common, like me. IF you were to ask me if my friends were beautiful, I’d tell you they were. I guess there was some “scale” in my mind where my friends could be only so beautiful – and if you went beyond that, I just didn’t want anything to do with you.
Even though I don’t REALLY know my reasons, I must confess, I sadly fear that they had to do with not wanting to be close enough to look any worse than I already did. I am scared, because I think that is likely to have been my heart’s TRUE motive. How grievous that I could have been the hands of the Savior, in ministering to another, but I couldn’t…wouldn’t???….because I couldn’t bear to look any more plain than I already did.
I also think that is why theatre called to me like a siren song. I couldn’t wait to be on stage. There I could be someone else. There it didn’t matter if I didn’t look beautiful – it was all an illusion anyway, so I was just one more part of that illusion. Unfortunately for me, theatre is also the one place where I received more blows to my fragile self esteem than any other. It was there that I started asking a question I would pepper the Lord with for many years to come.
“Why Lord would You put THIS personality in THIS body?” I loved having a good time. I loved being silly and making people feel confident in themselves. I could meet someone and see their weak point and I delighted in helping them feel strong in that very area. I seemed to draw friends in school like a flame draws moths. Yet time and again, I not only avoided, but I stopped cold when it came to anyone who was beautiful.
(I need to ask that you would join me in praying that the words I share here would not be for naught. That the Lord would use me, that I could be His vessel – common or not – used to speak Truth to other women, that we might all walk in freedom and joy at how wonderfully we have been made – to the delight of our Creator – the One who makes us beautiful.)