I Feel Pretty!

I don’t know if there is anything more ridiculous than when a magazine asks a celebrity a question like, “so, when do you feel most sexy?”. Why? Because here is the typical response:

“After a night of passionate lovemaking with my model / rock star / actor / billionaire significant other, I stretch out my naked, tanned, (clearly shaved and smooth and otherwise flawless) 48″ legs as the nanny delivers my precious, well-behaved children to my bedside. That, to me, is when I feel most beautiful and most sexy.”

Wow. ME TOO!!!

On a serious note, I have realized there is a major difference between when I feel that I look “pretty” and when I feel “pretty”.  When I feel I look pretty, my hair is done, makeup on, outfit just right. A façade, sure, but having it all together (on the outside, anyway) can give me a massive confidence boost — or at least balance out inevitable feelings of insecurity and self-doubt. However, when I feel pretty, chances are I look like I came out on the losing end of last night’s drunken bar fight. (which, nine out of 10 times, I didn’t. I win my bar fights, thankyouverymuch). Weird, right?

I feel pretty! And sweaty … bloated … purple teeth from red wine … puffy eyes … but pretty!

Case in point — here is a picture from Saturday morning of when I felt pretty, happy, content. I was out in the sun. My hair didn’t have  single styling product in it – au natural frizz and sweat. Not a speck of makeup, only sunscreen on my skin. You could sail to China on those eye bags of mine. I’m not sucking in my salt- and beer-bloated belly (and yes, I know I’m thin, but still) because I had consumed a bottle glass or two of wine that morning and decided to focus on reducing the appearance of my puffy eye boulders as opposed to the belly buddha. But while I was laying out on my patio, soaking up the sun on my last moments of vacation with a glass of wine and a magazine, I have to say, I FELT beautiful. I felt alive. Even if I was soon to scare away many of my fellow travelers at the hotel and the airport based on my appearance, I didn’t care.

Hair, check. Makeup, check. Outfit, check. Crazy amount of effort and insecurity, check.

By contrast, here is a picture of when I felt I looked pretty. Designer dress (thank you, Rent the Runway!). Hair and makeup done. Ready to go rock a charity event. How did I feel on the inside? A bit insecure surely. Could I pull of the dress? The evening? (as a side note, when I got home that evening having been well-served, I fell while taking off my platform stilettos. Eye met door. Black eye for a week. Beauty hurts).

Anyway that’s all I got. What about you folks? Do you find a strange contradiction in looking and feeling pretty / beautiful / sexy? Any pictures you’re willing to share?

p.s. I am not posting this as a passive-aggressive attempt to get comments that I looked nice or whatever in my sweaty sun picture. I just find it interesting that the times I feel better about myself (“pretty”, if you will) aren’t necessarily the times I look it. I’m curious if others feel the same. For example, right now I’m curled up on my couch wearing the same outfit I slept in (and … um … put on 24 hours ago), glasses on, hair up, no makeup with two cats cuddled in my lap. It’s pretty awesome and I feel pretty great. I look like I was hit by a bus, but whatever.

p.p.s. I really should shower, shouldn’t I. Hmmmm.

See, I wasn’t lying!

Life After Normal

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