Street Tales: Real beauty

She walked purposefully into the kitchen and stopped two feet from where I was standing at the stove. With a deadpan expression, she said, “we need to talk”.

I had greeted her as she came into the kitchen for lunch twenty minutes before, at which time she seemed very cheerful, so this abrupt attitude change caught me a little off-guard.

We found a secluded corner and when I asked her what she needed, she no sooner started to talk than the tears began to flow. Maybe I’ve become a little cynical, but as the tears came, I had the thought that, here’s another “maybe I’m not good enough for him” story from another jilted young girl.

I have known this young lady for about seven years. ‘Penny’ is petite, pretty and quite precocious; a precociousness that has led her to make some foolish choices in the way she lives.

One of the choices she has made is to step into a relationship with a man who has no regard for fidelity which is why she needed to speak her piece. Her feelings of being rejected made her think she had insufficient beauty with which to hold him.

How do you tell a young person that beauty is much more than what we see on the outside of a person? In fact, beauty is a three-part character of an individual which involves body, mind and spirit. Any relationship based on only one of these characteristics is incomplete.

So, for the next fifteen minutes or so, I tried to explain this to her. I tried to convince her that she was created to be a unique individual, not a doormat or a sex object. Knowing the fellow in question, he definitely was not interested in her mind, as a matter of fact, more often than not, it probably got in the way.

The more I emphasized the beauty in her that her fellow should have recognised, the more she brought up the fact that she was not worthy because of her past. It didn’t matter that we did not hold that against her; she did and she would not let it go.

All of this discussion emphasized my thoughts on the matter; you cannot live what you have not learned. Knowing the odd fact of her disjointed upbringing, I realize that she did not learn that the true beauty of a person is not only the physical part that we see. Age most often takes care of that. The mind of an individual has to be taken into account as well. Regardless of what the commercial and comedic part of the world would have us believe, our concept of the blond bimbo and other stereotypes has to go; instead, we have to learn to appreciate each and every person as they are.

I believe the most important part of a person’s beauty is their spirit. I once read the statement; “keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it are all the issues of life.” If you have not learned how to control and keep your heart well, then you are totally susceptible to any and all influences good or bad. So for Penny to be in the situation she is, it is no wonder that she feels hurt and rejected by the one she has invested her emotions in.

To convince her now that this fellow is not worth her effort and that she has much more worth and beauty than this person gives her, is a task that would take much more than I could ever give, but maybe through just plain old encouragement she will be able to take on a different outlook. Maybe, just maybe she will learn that she is capable of much greater beauty.

Chris Salomons is the kitchen coordinator at Potter’s Hands in Red Deer.

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