Meet the Author's Author

Meet the Author's Author
Live for Jesus! That's what matters! That you see the light in me and come along! :)

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

To Catcall Or To Compliment

Walking hurriedly along the street in the cool evening air, I glanced sideways at my reflection in the glass window, noting again my arms with dissatisfaction.
I barely had time to think, rushing madly as I was to get the 8:39 train in time, trying to take in and appreciate the surroundings around me (anti-depression technique), but my shoulders sagged a little, thinking of my dissatisfaction with the way I looked, trying to concentrate on it being more important the way I am inside and yes, I DO like my style. Including the trainers. It's independent looking, like I don't care what people think - and I don't, to some degree. But there are certain things about my body that I don't like. Since being rejected, that insecurity has gained a lot of ground, even though I try to ignore it.

Rushing along Broad Street, I neared three guys in suits sauntering along. Looking ahead, I went to go past them when one, on a phone, waved at me, in front of my face. I smiled at him as he grinned, continuing a quick pace past. His mate behind slowed up and pointed.
"Hey, you smiled!"
At which my smile went full and I laughed.
I carried on; so did they.

They weren't being chavvy, so I felt complimented by the attention - which changed my attitude and I stopped slouching so much and strode on. Then I began to notice the other sideways glances from other guys. The smiles at me from some.

Which all served to boost my self-confidence.

It wasn't bad attention. If they were looking at my body, if I'd been wearing something questionable, then I'd have had good cause to be concerned. But a black t-shirt and mid-calf black chiffon skirt? No.

Which then lead to the pondering - is the attention wrong? Was my reaction to it wrong? Should I be denying/blocking the confidence feeling, as in the past, and be feeding my confidence from God alone?

Some people would say Yes.
Men should control their eyes and mouths, and not pay compliment or court to a woman's prettiness/beauty, unless to wife or family.
Yes, I should have been covered up more - maybe not had my hair loose or make-up on, not worn a t-shirt. I shouldn't have noticed the compliments of looks, smiles and waves and I certainly shouldn't have let it affect me.

But...I don't think so.
God made men to appreciate pretty things - including women. Too often they are scared to - maybe we shout sexual harassment or demanding equal treatment. Maybe because as women, we tend to go - ooh he complimented me! Maybe he wants to go on a date!
No, it was an appreciation of beauty. Be proud of being a woman and accept it graciously.

There would be a problem if I allowed the attention to obsess my thoughts or prompt more preening in front of the mirror than usual - if I allowed the dissatisfaction with who I am to sink into my soul until I try and change everything external, forgetting or minimising the importance of focusing on my spiritual growth, character and walk with God.
There is a problem when the opinion of men becomes worth it more than the opinion of God.

But there is nothing wrong with accepting the appreciation of men when offered appropriately.

Nor does it make me less of a woman to take it graciously.

If I send it where it came from - to God, Who gave men their appreciation of beauty, and me, for these few short years, the appearance of external prettiness. Even if I don't recognise or appreciate it until a guy waves his hand in front of my face. :-P

I will praise Thee, oh Lord, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made, and my soul knows it very well.

Thank You for putting people in the now to tell me physically when I get tired repeating to myself over and over.

Am I spiritualising the physical realm? Maybe.
I'd rather be directing what I consider to be gifts back to where they come from than taking glory for myself - for something I had no power to create or bring about.

And thanks, guys, for making a tired, soul-weary woman feel sparkly, attractive and pretty for a few hours.
I appreciate your appropriate compliments.
And no, I'm not thinking you want anything else. For once.