I needed a photo for a publication. I am not a photo on demand kind of girl. There is no professional model in these bones. But I had to provide a photo of myself. A head shot.
I look at my clothes and think, “when was the last time I even bought a top that is photo worthy?” I put on my make up and become nervous it won’t be natural enough. I curl my hair while wishing I could just wear a hat and sunglasses to hide behind. But it had to be a photo of my face with no hat, no sunglasses, no barriers to the windows of my soul.
I square my shoulders and look at the big round circle that will freeze and imprint my features for all to see. I stop breathing. No, wait. I feel awkward. Take another one. My smile was crooked. Oops. I closed my eyes. Darn, my hair is already flat. Can I stand up for this? I want to change my blouse now. I am sweating.
Twenty clicks later I have a close resemblance of a photo I can live with. I look at the photo and think, “oh boy. Look at those wrinkles. Goodness at the circles under the eyes. Do I really have that many freckles?” All I see are the flaws that every professional model would have had photo shopped out before it ever hit a magazine or a piece of shiny photo paper.
The photographer says, “Beautiful.”
I stop. Guess what? This is me. It’s the best I am. Why would I photo shop out all of those years of laughter, those tears of compassion, those hours of outdoor living? I love who I am on the inside. Why would I not embrace who I am on the outside? Life is not about being picture perfect. Life is about becoming. I became who I am.
So I have a photo of me. It’s the best I can do. I smiled my best smile. I opened the blinds to my soul. I allowed the click to embrace the real deal.
*accompanying photo via pinterest.com of text excerpt from The Velveteen Rabbit, children’s book written by Margery Williams