There’s an expression, “Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder”; yet, we’re continually told and shown who’s considered beautiful and handsome. I prefer to make my own decisions and not be told how or what to think.
When I think of a truly beautiful woman, my Grandma Rose comes to mind. Her beauty was not packaged inside a 5’10” body weighing 110 pounds. She stood barely 5-feet tall and maintained a healthy weight, which carried many heavy loads throughout her lifetime. Her light blue eyes brightened one’s day like a sunrise over the ocean, and eased one’s mind like the scent of sea air.
From when I was a young child, I admired her faith, strength and positive thinking. She wasn’t comfortable speaking ill of anyone and was generally the peacemaker; the worst language she ever used was calling someone a “little bugger” for misbehaving. She taught me to stay strong and keep the faith during the most difficult times of my life – when we often question faith. At 82-years-old, with painful, arthritic knees, she cared for me after my back surgery. I was bedridden for three months; she brought my food, emptied my bedpans and never once complained.
The evening of her 100th birthday celebration she fell. I visited her daily at the care center where she rehabbed. One day an aide asked me how old my grandmother was. The aide was surprised by my answer and thought Grandma was only 80-years old. The aide then commented on my grandmother’s beautiful smile and pleasant disposition. Natural beauty is obvious at every age. My sons began to laugh when I thanked the aide on my grandmother’s behalf for the huge compliment. “How could looking 80 be a compliment?” I explained to my young boys that looking twenty years younger is quite a compliment.
Pictured is Grandma at 95-years-old. Her beauty radiated from her kind, generous soul through those comforting eyes and warm, genuine smile. How often do we see this image on the cover of a magazine representing beauty? Grandma wasn’t in the public eye expecting accolades for her accomplishments and contributions to family and society. She was a beautiful, strong, wise woman who selflessly cared for others, immeasurably impacting their lives until she died at 103-years-old. Just like the flower, Grandma Rose planted seeds of peace, love, beauty and devotion, enhancing every life she touched.