It's Wednesday, the day when we talk marriage! I introduce a topic, and then you follow up either by commenting or by writing your own post and then linking up!
Photo by sepblog
My husband has often told me that the most stressful time in his life--far more stressful than resuscitating babies (he's a pediatrician), dealing with seizing kids, or even dealing with problem parents--was being a grade 8 boy in a classroom full of girls with tight sweaters, and living in mortal dread that the teacher may call you up to the board at an inopportune moment. Thirteen-year-old boys can't seem to control certain body parts, if you get my drift.
That seems so implausible to us women, who aren't really that visually stimulated at all. We tend to think it's kind of shallow: what's wrong with him that he is tempted by what women look like? Shouldn't he be, well, a little deeper?
Nope. Men are visually stimulated. We may think that's stupid, or silly, or shallow, but they are. We can't change that. So as women, what should our attitudes be towards beauty, marriage, and our husbands?
Remember Proverbs 31:30?
Charm is deceitful, and beauty is fleeting, but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised (NIV).
I absolutely believe that. Our hearts matter most. But at the same time, I fear that sometimes we in the church use verses like that to say that it doesn't matter if a woman lets her appearance completely go. He's wrong to care about beauty at all.
No, he's not. That's the way he was made. And I think that when we take care of our appearance, what we're really saying is,
I care about you. I want you. I want you to be happy with me. I want to woo you.
It's part of pursuing him, which he desperately needs.
Instead of showing him that we want to look good for him, though, we often take the most pride in our appearance when we're leaving the house. But who should we be dressing up for? Shouldn't it be our husbands?
We do something similar--but on a larger scale--when it comes to those razors in our shower. Sure we shave--if someone is going to see us in a bathing suit or a tank top or shorts. But since that's not likely to happen in the middle of winter, we often let it slide, even if it means our legs are hardly smooth. I wonder what our husbands think about that?
When I speak to women, I use a "Nightgown" prop. It's hideous. They say a little mystery is a good thing; this is way too much. When I hold it up, everyone laughs, and everyone can relate. Of course, some people wear flannel like this because their husbands insist on keeping the house at 50 degrees at night, and to those men, I like to say, "if you want to turn the heat up in the bedroom, you might want to actually turn the heat up." But for the rest of us, what do you wear to bed? Do you take care to wear something attractive? Or do you just look dumpy? Because if you look dumpy, you'll feel dumpy, too.
My daughters and I love watching What Not to Wear, and I think what we love most about it is the personality transformations by the end of the show. These women, who were docile and passive, have become assertive because they know they look good. There's something to that. When we put in the effort, our whole demeanor changes.
So what do you do if your closet is full of clothes but you don't look good in any of them? Get rid of them. It's better to have five outfits that make you feel wonderful than thirty that make you feel awful. It doesn't matter if you bought it on sale. It doesn't matter if you've had it forever. Chuck it. Spend some real money on fewer clothes, rather than a little money on tons of things on sale. Or go shopping at consignment stores, where they sell second hand designer clothes. I've picked up a ton of things there, and the owners of such places are often very helpful about putting things together.
Now, what about make up? Maybe you're not a make-up person, but I think a little lipstick never hurt anyone. And remember, everyone should be wearing some sunscreen foundation or moisturizer everyday anyway, so you may as well put something on your face!
As for hair, go get a really good cut that suits you. If you can't afford it, try one of the beauty salon schools in your area. They're often cheaper, though they take longer. And you can have a friend highlight your hair. It can be like you're teenagers again!
Now let's tackle the thorniest issue: our weight. Women gain weight. We're not meant to be size 6 forever, and I think slightly pear shaped is our natural shape after 40. But that doesn't mean that we should just accept it and eat whatever we want. I think we owe it to ourselves to watch what we eat and get a little active, even if it just means taking a brisk walk every night after dinner to talk with our hubby. You don't need to be super-thin; and what makes a woman attractive is often her attitude. Dress in nice clothes and feel confident, and thirty or forty pounds won't matter as much. One hundred will, though.
So, to sum up:
1.Shave your legs. Even in winter.
2. Brush your hair and put on lipstick right before you see your husband at the end of the day. Make yourself look best for him.
3. Buy fewer clothes that flatter you more.
4. Care for your body.
If women put as much effort in looking good for our husbands as we do for strangers, our marriages would be infinitely better. And we'd have awfully happy husbands!
Now, what advice do you have for us today? Have you ever had to confront your fantasies and throw them aside? How did you do it? Or do you have something else to tell us? Write your own Wifey Wednesday post that links back to here, and then leave the link of THAT POST in the Mcklinky below. Thanks!
Labels: appearance, beauty, marriage, wifey wednesdays