Having a conversation with a friend in which she expressed her shock at the latest infidelity scandal. I pretty much had very little to offer other than expressing my sadness for all parties involved. When people don’t understand their true nature, they make choices based on that illusion. Unfortunately instead of getting the results they want, they usually end up worse off. You can never make a lie the truth. I digress.
My friend made a comment about the situation. “She (his wife) could have at least fixed herself up a little. Look at her hair! She needs to cover that gray. If she didn’t look so matronly, this might not have happened.” I have great respect for my friend and I give everyone the respect and freedom to have their own opinions, but her comment made me think…Why is it that we don’t accept people for who they truly are? Do women bear the stigma of “discardment” with age or weight? Are we self participants in that drama? And on a much larger point, if God gave people gray hair, or thick bushy eyebrows, pale skin or “cankles,” who are we to say that that person is less desirable than anyone else?
I’m learning more and more to accept people for who they really are. To honor their spirit. To not make harsh judgments, place blame or give credit based solely on appearance. I now see gray hair as a marker of someone who’s earned their place in society—they might have plenty of wisdom to share. I’ll take the time to get to know them, perhaps some of their lessons might benefit me on my journey. I see a scarred face only as a reminder that we are partners on the road of life that is sometimes difficult to understand and that their pain is not unlike my own. And I see a woman whose middle is a little thicker and who never takes her hair out of a ponytail or puts makeup on her face, as someone who has made great sacrifices to bring a human being into the world.
Everyone deserves to be exactly as they are and I’m teaching myself to always look past the “veil” for the common thread of humanity that exists in each of us—that common thread that unites us all.
To Your Journey,
Tonya Lampley is a Cincinnati based fiction author. Her debut novel is titled A Taste of Love and is available at Joseph Beth Booksellers and Amazon.com. To learn more about Tonya and her works, please visit www.TonyaLampley.com.