Let’s talk about beauty.
Let’s talk about perception vs reality.

I spent a little time writing outside this afternoon. I’ve been packing the pages into something that is really starting to resemble a book. I feel good about it. I had time to wear mascara and a braid today. I feel good about that, too. I got a new bra and a little sunshine. The only thing better than that would be no bra, but I also had to go in public today. You’re welcome, public.

So there I was, feeling pretty damn good about my day and my braid and my bra. You get it. So, I did a thing I don’t do all that often these days. I took a selfie. I opened Snapchat and saw the girl on the left.

I saw imperfect skin, wild fly away hair sprinkled with gray, and tired eyes.
This skin has seen some shit.
This hair is always going gray.
These eyes are always tired.
I didn’t like what I saw. It dampened my sunny spirit. I wrinkled my nose at the picture and decided to take another. This time, I clicked on the beauty filter.
Like magic, my skin was flawless, my grays were softened, and my eyes looked bright and pretty. Problem solved. Here’s the thing. I didn’t like that one either. It isn’t me. It looks a little like me, but it isn’t me.

The girl on the left is a night owl with a coffee addiction. The girl on the right is well rested and probably remembers birthdays.

The girl on the left throws around curse words like confetti, listens to weird music that makes her sad, and never wears shoes. The girl on the right probably thinks before she speaks and listens to whatever you like to listen to.

The girl on the left is the first one to jump in the crick on a hot day, in all her clothes if the kids are around. The girl on the right calls it a creek and probably doesn’t like to get dirty.

The girl on the left has gotten really good at long kisses and apologies. She cries a lot, but laughs even more. The girl on the right probably knows what’s for dinner and will put the kids to bed on time.

The girl on the left loves ugly poetry, strong wine, and making people uncomfortable. The girl on the right probably arrives early with a smile on her face and her children bathed.

I could go on and on. The point? The girl on the left has a lot more fun. So why would I pretend to be the girl on the right?

It’s worth mentioning that if you put these pictures on a missing poster, the girl on the left gets found. No one has ever seen the girl on the right in real life. Let’s keep it real, folks.