What the Picture Didn't Show

Truth is, I've gained some weight since I got married. Surprise surprise. The other truth is that I'm taking better care of my body than ever before. I work out, I eat a heck of a lot healthier than I did as a single college student and I get 8+ hours of sleep a night. So sometimes it's frustrating to see a picture of myself and think negative thoughts about the way my body looks. I wonder what all the people from high school would say if they saw me. If they'd think I let myself go after marriage or whatever other cruel thing we humans talk about for "small talk." 

I  re-read this story from Thomas S. Monson tonight and realized it was EXACTLY what I needed to hear.

"A member of a womens organization once complained when a certain woman was selected to represent the organization. She had never met the woman, but she had seen a photograph of her and didn't like what she saw, considering her to be overweight. She commented 'Of the thousands of women in this organization, surely a better representative could have been chosen.' 
True, the woman who was chosen was not 'model slim.' But those who knew her and knew her qualities saw in her far more than was reflected in the photograph. The photograph DID show that she had a friendly smile and a look of confidence. What the photograph DIDN'T show was that she was a loyal and compassionate friend, a woman of intelligence who loved the Lord and who loved and served His children. It didn't show that she volunteered in the community and was a considerate and concerned neighbor. 
In short, the photograph did not reflect who she really was. I ask: if attitudes, deeds, and spiritual inclinations were reflected in PHYSICAL FEATURES, would the countenance of the woman who complained be as lovely as that of the woman she criticized?"
(Thomas S. Monson, Charity Never Faileth)
I can't keep anyone from talking about me. But what I CAN do is continue to take care of my body, strengthen my testimony, and continue to nurture my marriage and other family relationships. I am still beautiful. And there are lots of things that are important about me that the picture above DOESN'T show.

 photo jolley-sig_zps8e3a9f4d.jpg


Whitney said...

I LOVE this post Brookyln, thank you so much for writing it! I needed this! I loved following you on Twitter this weekend, great stuff. I'm struggling to lose the baby weight (I have a 7 month old) and when I see women who put themselves through extremes to not only be fit but look like fitness MODELS it can play with your head. You're right, I am healthy and I exercise daily! So what if we aren't fitness models too right?! Totally babbling there, just really appreciate it

Ashley Z. said...

This is perfect.