Beauty thru my Lens: A Tree and Aging

Will you see my beauty if

branches are bare against  the cold if

bold color fades around my feet.

Will you see my beauty if

fruitfulness has waned.

Will you see my beauty if

life seems gone if

shape is twisted if

outer skin is plain.

Will you see my beauty if…

winter woods 094

I have been thinking about beauty and started reading J. Ruth Gendler’s book Notes on the Need for Beauty: An Intimate Look at an Essential Quality. I have picked up another of her books, The Book of Qualities, several times over the past 15 years because of her artful use of metaphor to introduce us to human qualities, such as beauty and faith and anxiety, as if they are people we know. Of course we know them, but usually we are too busy with living to look them in the eye and really know them.

I know, on an intellectual level, that feeling beautiful becomes an issue as our bodies age, but I am surprised at how much I am impacted. I have always been a very low maintenance person and was never described as a beauty. I never relied on props like a lot of makeup and fancy clothes. I remember moving my physical body through life with confidence that it would serve me well. I believed that other characteristics, such as kindness, integrity, faith, love, and intelligence, were more important than beauty. What do I do now that I can no longer move my body with confidence? What do I do now that my body no longer feels whole and functional?

I know, on an emotional level, that I need to and will work this out for myself. We all need to. But I also know that I don’t have to work it out alone. As I read and ponder I will undoubtedly write because writing helps me maintain my wholeness, centeredness and now, my beauty.

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24 Comments »

    • Because the symptoms of fibromyalgia include a deconditioning of muscles because of inefficient use of oxygen and because keeping muscles strong through exercise causes pain. My brain doesn’t process pain signals accurately from the microscopic tears that result from normal exercise. I also have hip and foot pain caused by age and weight. I have fund weight loss very difficult because of medications I take and inability to exercise enough to increase my metabolism.
      Short answer is because the pain I experience with movement makes me unsteady and slows my gait.

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  1. Hi Pat, I do so sympathise with all your wearing-down symptoms. Have you looked at EFT – emotional freedom technique. There is an introduction to the practice somewhere on Dr Mercola’s website http://www.mercola.com. Actual practitioners include Dr Pat Carrington, Gary Craig (who devised this particular version of energy therapy otherwise known as tapping), Brad Yates, Nick and Jessica Ortner, Jack Canfield and Pamela Bruner – they all have a web presence/books/DVDs, and there are various videos on YouTube to give you an idea. It’s basically a form of acu-pressure, tapping on meridian points while talking out your issues whatever they may be. Just a thought. Best wishes, Tish

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    • Thanks for the info, Tish. I will check it out. I had some training in something that sounds similar. We do wear our emotions in our tight muscles. 🙂 It isn’t unusual for people to express emotion when having massage.

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  2. Beautiful post and moving too. Thanks for sharing your thoughts about this. I’m sure all your other great features are more important than moving with confidence. And I’m sure you can show confidence in other ways. Still I do understand your feelings. I hope you’ll find a way of balancing these things. 🙂

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    • Thanks, Inga. You are so right that I have felt other characteristics are more important for my whole life – so now should be no different. Funny how some things can surprise me – sneak up on me when I don’t expect it. 🙂

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  3. Isn’t that a dogwood? I love dogwood trees. Most of the year you look right past them, but in spring they steal the show. Much nicer than flashy plants that are putting on their acts all year around.

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