November 11, 2014

Face Me Blog Tour: The Real Face of Pregnancy

When my friend Jaime Wright first brought up the idea of a blog tour featuring posts on beauty -- requiring blog authors to post a picture of themselves without makeup -- I said, thanks but no thanks.

I'm 35 weeks pregnant and let's just say...it's not been so kind in the face department. In other words, I've struggled with acne throughout my pregnancy. So the idea of posting a pic of myself without makeup to hide these imperfections from the world was...well, scary.

Because I want the world to see me like this:
A cute pregnant girl with flawless skin.

The truth is, makeup covers a lot of imperfections. And so does Photoshop.

But as I saw more and more of my friends taking up the challenge -- saying, "yes, I'll do this...even though it makes me nervous!" -- I wondered what my excuse was. Because really, pregnancy isn't an excuse (to avoid this, that is...it IS an excuse to eat lots of ice cream! Hehe).

In fact, pregnancy is one of those times in a woman's life when she feels particularly vulnerable. If you've been pregnant, you know how weird it is to not feel comfortable in your own skin -- which is always stretching, by the way. Your body does things you didn't know it could do...in both bad and good ways.

There are kankles. Stretch marks. Love handles. Acne. Tired, puffy eyes from lack of sleep.

None of these things show in the picture above. Photoshop and makeup have the ability to whisk all of that unpleasantness away. It presents a false image. And no, there's nothing inherently wrong with wanting gorgeous photos to remind us of this special time in our lives.

But...what about authenticity?

If makeup and Photoshop cover up our true physical appearance, might we also be covering up our true spiritual and emotional states? Whether you're pregnant or not, many of us rarely share our true selves.

Why? The same reason we love makeup.

Because we're afraid of rejection. If we show our true selves, will people still love us?

Because we compare ourselves. If we show our true selves, will we look as good -- on the inside and outside -- as so-and-so?

Because, ultimately, we are valuing the wrong things.

God created each of us -- He created YOU -- as a work of art, a thing of beauty. His Word says, "I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well" (Psalm 139:14).

That's not talking about the made-up you or the "you" that you allow others to see. Because God? He sees everything: the good, the bad, and the ugly.

And He loves you anyway.

You don't have to fear rejection from God. He will never reject you.

You don't have to compare yourself to others for God to love you. You are a unique creation He cherishes.

Let's start valuing the RIGHT things. Let's stop caring about how we look on the outside and realize that EVEN WITHOUT MAKEUP, WE ARE BEAUTIFUL...especially without makeup. Because without it, we are real. And real is beautiful.

Because this acne and these tired eyes I'm dealing with? This. Right. Here?
I'm choosing to embrace them. Because it means there's a little person growing inside of me. Someone who God created. A mother is a warrior -- and these are my battle scars.

Embrace what you see as your imperfections.

Embrace who YOU truly are.

God has...and He loves you in spite of them. He loves you FOR them.

Bottom line -- He loves us. It's time we start loving ourselves.

Your Turn: I'd love to see a photo of your pure beauty -- without makeup, without fear! If you don't feel comfortable with that, that's okay too. Let's talk: why do you think women have such a hard time embracing their own beauty? And if you've ever been pregnant, what physical aspect of that made you the most uncomfortable with your body?


For more Face Me Blog Tour inspiration, check out posts by these amazing authors!

Gabrielle Meyer
Nick Kording
Joseph Courtemanche
Jaime Wright
Carrie Wisehart
Emilie Anne Hendryx
Andrea Michelle Wood
Sarah Baker
Kristy Cambron
Rachel Britz
Cara Putman
Stacy Monson
Laurie Tomlinson
Katie Ganshert
Katherine Reay

24 comments:

  1. Great post, Lindsay!

    After two babies, I have to admit that it wasn't the pregnancy aspect that made me the most uncomfortable (not that it wasn't highly so, especially toward the end!), it was the *ahem* after effects.

    With pregnancy I had kind of resigned myself to getting baby whale-sized and not being able to see my feet for months, those sorts of things. With my first, I think I just assumed that afterward everything would kind of fall back into place and I'd have my old body back in a few months. When I realized that it didn't actually work that way, at least not for this body, it wasn't pretty.

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    1. Thanks for visiting, and for sharing your experience! I have yet to experience the after effects, but have been warned. Guess it's all part of the battle scars of mommyhood, eh?

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  2. LINDSEY!! I love this and I love you! That makeup-less photo? I think it is absolutely stunning! Because the person in that photo is stunning. You go rock your pregnant self, chica.

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    1. Aw, thank you, girl! I kind of feel the same way about you. :P

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  3. Yay!! You're radiant, Lindsay. :) Pregnancy is God's way of preparing us for parenthood, and the first lesson is sacrifice. Sacrificing your body for your baby makes you the most beautiful you've ever been. It's been so much fun watching you grow and blossom in your pregnancy. I can't wait to meet Baby Harry!!

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    1. Yes, love that...sacrifice. It's important to remember that, more now than ever. The sacrifice is so worth it!

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  4. You're such a beautiful mama, Linds. Little Harry is so lucky to have you as a mama! <3 <3

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    1. Awww, I feel so loved! Right back atcha, mama!

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  5. Love the legacy of authenticity... nothing is more beautiful!

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    1. Agreed, Nick. Thanks for visiting! Loved your post as well.

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  6. I love the word "embrace." You are beautiful and enough.

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    1. We all are, Carrie! Thanks so much for your comment! :)

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  7. "Let's start valuing the RIGHT things. Let's stop caring about how we look on the outside and realize that EVEN WITHOUT MAKEUP, WE ARE BEAUTIFUL...especially without makeup. Because without it, we are real. And real is beautiful." Love, love this. Great post!

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    1. Thank you, Rachel! I need to hop on over and read your post. :)

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  8. What a beautiful mommy to be! I'm so glad you're embracing what truly matters, Lindsay - the privilege of being pregnancy, the excitement of this new life God is creating. No two pregnant women look the same which is just another affirmation of how unique each of us truly is. Congratulations!

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    1. Thank you, Stacy! You're right to call pregnancy a privilege. I know many women are not so fortunate, and I want to embrace the journey -- all parts of it.

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  9. Lindsay, you're beautiful!!! And I love your vulnerability with us here on your blog! Thanks for sharing <3

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    1. Oh, thank you, Emilie! So awesome of you to stop by.

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  10. You are so beautiful! I'd forgotten the vulnerability that comes along with bringing a new baby into the world. That is, I'd forgotten until my sister had her first baby last week. I remembered what it's like to have the unrealistic expectations for women to bounce back to perfect bodies, to apologize for our imperfections, and be unable to really enjoy the gift that is motherhood! I am so proud of you! You're giving courage to so many - and being naturally beautiful while doing so!

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    1. Thanks, girl. I still remember when you were the pregnant girl at ACFW...you were so cute and just radiated beauty! There's something special about being pregnant, makeup or no makeup. If only I could remember to look at all the positives and forget the negatives. That's my goal.

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  11. Not sure anything is more beautiful than a mamma nurturing their unborn child! LOVE YOU!

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    1. Aw, love ya back, girl! Thanks again for organizing this day. So honored to be part of it.

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  12. Lindsay, you are beautiful--inside and out. The gift of pregnancy looks beautiful on you. Thanks for sharing your thoughts so transparently. They touched my heart.

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  13. So Cute Baby And Offcourse So Cute Mumma Also Toshiba PVT-375BT may you live long and happy life!

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