I tuned in to the Miss USA Pageant last night and I can say that I enjoyed it. This time for me the pageant was not all about who was wearing a bathing suit or just the glitz and glam of it all, but the fact that it showed cased both beautiful and capable women.
In case you do not know the winner of the Miss USA pageant was Miss District of Columbia. An Officer in the Army Reserve, both beautiful, and smart. Now I will admit that I may be a little bias because I am in the DC area, I work with the military in my day job, and my mother is retired from the ARMY. I have a soft spot for women who are both strong and beautiful.
But let’s just take “Army” out of it. There is a bigger point. And that is that a women can be both beautiful, smart, and capable. I think in age of social media, women tend to pose half naked all over the internet thinking that this is their way to fame. We have the Kardashians who use their looks and body to get “followers” and this is deemed a success. Now if that is what you want to do is be like a Kardashian then fine, no judgment here. But I also feel that we must teach young woman that aspiring to be on the Bad Girls Club is not a goal in life.
You can be beautiful, you can have a banging body, AND you can be smart. I am sure that the woman who did not win Miss USA were disappointed. But they will go back to their extraordinary lives in which they have jobs, graduate degrees, are brand ambassadors, and provide advocacy. With women who are just a one trick pony, feeling like their good looks and big butts, will carry them through life; there life is not about anything much. Looks fade, anything can happen, looks are not eternal.
- Don’t you want something else going on for yourself?
- Don’t you want to stand in front of a crowd of people and say I am pretty, but let me tell you what else I can do?
Miss USA (formally Miss DC) said something wonderful as she was answering one of her questions. She said:
“To me confidently beautiful means understanding it’s not always about your appearance. It’s not always about who you are around and how they feel you look, where they feel you come from or your economic background. Serving in the military has taught me that being confidently beautiful is about being able to earn respect from people regardless of what you look like. As a woman in the military, people associate beauty with weakness and they learn very quickly that I’m extremely strong, and though I’m small, I’m powerful. Confidently beautiful is being myself and being very happy with who I’ve become.”
What a powerful statement. Here is a beautiful woman who understand that it is not always about your appearance. I think the strongest woman is a woman that know she can be beautiful and smart and the strongest woman is a woman who makes you underestimate her because of her outward appearance, and then she goes and proves you wrong with her intellect. Now to me, that is real beauty. Not only it is real beauty but it is a testament of strength of what a real woman is made of.
Being a dark skin women myself, I can imagine the barriers that Miss DC had to endure because she may not have always been seen as beautiful by the mainstream. I know I have gotten comments like
“You are pretty for a black woman, or a dark skin woman”
And these comments come from people in my own race! I do not want to make this post about color. What I want to point out is that beauty comes from within. You can be as beautiful as you want to be. You can be a smart as you want to be. You can work hard and achieve things that go beyond your outward appearance. You do not have to pretend to be dumb just because you’re a woman. You can be beautiful and smart.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” Marianne Williamson
Do not be afraid to let your light shine. You were meant to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous; not just either or.