Friday, January 27, 2017

Reflections of Imperfections

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. It sees or observes a thing or a person and is subjective based on or influenced by personal feelings, taste, or opinions.

Wouldn't it be great if we could view our lives through the lens of nature? Because even with all its deformities, we still see nature's beauty; we are still captivated by the transformation the different seasons bring, looking beyond its imperfections and accepting the natural order of its creation.

But when we look through the lens of humanity, many of us tend to have a harder time accepting the fact that we are imperfect beings, yet still beautifully created.

Why is this?

Is it because the world's perception of beauty is ingrained by social media to be one of perfection; therefore, seen through the lens of a standardise physical beauty?

Does this idea of perfection eventually creep inward and mask our inner beauty as well?

I am not saying that fitting the mould of physical beauty is, in itself, a bad thing, or that we shouldn't care about our physical appearance. But if we look beyond our imperfections; if we learn to embrace and accept and unmasked them, we will find the true essence of beauty in its rarest form, a beauty that captures the glow of the soul.

I know this to be true in my life. Because while there are some physical features that I can't change about myself, the insecurities ingrained in me from my childhood was something that I could change. Ultimately, I was the one allowing them to gain power over the deception of my imperfections. I was the one choosing to live in the shadow of my past.

Accepting that I am an imperfect being residing in an imperfect world has not only been life-changing for me, but it has deepened my connection with others as well.

Turn your scars into beauty.

You are more than your imperfections.

You are a unique individual.

You are one of a kind, fearfully and wonderfully made by our Creator.

His power is made perfect in your imperfections.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Platitudes in Grief

Grief holds no boundaries. I am neither the exception from it nor am I an expert on it. My greatest teacher on this sensitive subject, however, has been my losses. 

To better understand grief's aftermath, I enrolled in a course that mainly focuses on Grief and Loss Counselling, with an emphasis on a counselor's role while assisting the bereaved. And it has opened my eyes to the wrongful use of platitudes in grief: 

" I know how you feel." 

" Your loved one is in a better place." 

" At least your loved one didn't suffer."

" Time heals all wounds."

" Everything happens for a reason."

" You should be over your grief by now."

" Your loved one would have wanted you to move on."

" Be strong." 

" Keep the faith."

Most of us (myself included) have used these platitudes with good intentions, though.

No doubt, for some, there is a certain level of discomfort and awkwardness when they are face-to-face with a bereaved person. They are fearful of saying the wrong thing but feel the need to, at least, say something, so they use platitudes in hopes of offering some support. But rarely do they have the outcome that one intended. If anything, it can minimize the bereaved person's pain. Saying I am sorry or simply being there with a reassuring hug or a listening ear is often enough. 

Grief, though universal to us all, is unique to the individual.