I recently asked my husband to help me replace some of my head shot images on my websites. I had been using a cropped picture I took at an event years ago and it was time for a little better image. After a little photoshopping on some pictures we took in the back yard, he declared, “Well, you’ve certainly aged a bit in the last seven years!” I had to admit, it was actually kind of shocking, looking at the difference in the lines in my face between the two pictures. My once-smooth skin was now blemished with crows’ feet, wrinkles and lines.
Even worse, the computer-enhanced image made my face look plastic. My kids took one look at the edited image and said, “Mom, you just look weird!!!” I ended up having new photos in natural light that left me less “fake” and more like myself, but it was certainly a lesson in humility.
Aging is a part of life, and I was blessed to today to have the opportunity to review of Lisa Mladinich’s presentation on “True Beauty, Your Relationship with Your Aging Self” for the Catholic Reflections 4 Women Series. It really gave me a lot of food for thought. In a culture that extols perfect bodies and skin, we naturally focus on beauty. Lisa gives us the antidote: finding true and authentic beauty in our souls. She explains how all the signs of aging are part of God’s plan and as we age and grow in inner beauty. That is where we become radiant in our faith. She points out that true beauty is a concept that rightly belongs to God, and in our femininity, we are symbolic of this beauty. Lightly touching on the Feminine Genius and Theology of the Body, she shares how we as women point to heaven with our sensitive, gentle, maternal and receptive natures. With Mary, the Mother of God as the perfect example of self-donation, we as women should model ourselves after her virtues and true beauty. Most importantly she shares how we can grow in virtue and cultivate and eternal perspective in our lives, focusing on heaven more than our earthly lives.
If you are looking for a great program for group or self study this Lent, I would highly recommend checking out the Catholic Reflections 4 Women series!
Copyright 2017 Michele Faehnle