I’ve never been the kinda women that looks like what you see on all the beauty magazines. In truth, I tend to feel like a daisy amongst rose after rose after rose. And that’s okay. Because I’m just as Heavenly Father made me to be.

I think too often, we as ladies, when we get up in the mornings, we look at ourselves in the mirror with the intention of finding what we need to fix or correct, and not acknowledge seeing the beauty that is there by simply being who we are. Instead, we anxiously have to make sure our teeth are as white and pretty as possible. Or we have to have on every “anti wrinkle, sun spot, blotchy skin, anything that makes us appear old” cream possible. Or we cringe at acne, hairs on our face where they are not supposed to be, and under eye bags.

Rarely do we get up in the morning, look in the mirror and as Happy Days’ “The Fonz” would do when he’s just about to comb his hair, say “Hey!” with confident approval and leave ourselves just as we are.

I admit, sometimes I am one of those gals.

A wonderful friend of mine though, reminded me that true beauty goes beyond our earthy bodies.

Recently, I was driving in my car and the thought came to me, “I need to go see Becky.” She had just delivered a premature baby boy at a nearby hospital. After being on strict bed rest in the hospital for some time, the baby just couldn’t wait to come into this world, and sure enough, way before his due date, he was welcomed, weighing just over three pounds.

So I got in contact with her, and later that night, I found myself driving to meet her and her latest family addition. Her husband met me at the doors that went into the NICU, took me to the washing area where I scrubbed my arms and hands like a doctor, and minutes later I was standing in a room that their little baby was in, along with numerous other little babies. Becky was standing next to his incubator with a smile on her face, so proud to show me her lil’ guy. My heart leaped within as I looked at him. He was absolutely beautiful. His head was covered with dark hair and his little feet were crossed. From head to toe, I saw heaven.

I was grateful to have brought my camera with me and asked to take a few shots of her holding him.  She had just started Kangaroo Care that evening and had forgotten her own camera at home.  I silently watched my sweet friend gently hold her son on her chest. She glowed. She looked like an angel….an angel mother. I kept my tears back as well as I could. She said jokingly, “Now I don’t have any make up on, so we’re going to have to edit these pictures.” I smiled with her, but inside all I could see on her face, in her eyes, was beauty.  It was something I will never forget.  I felt the Spirit of God so strong in that moment. And I felt honored and humbled to be given such an opportunity to share it with her and her son.

There are so many in this world that simply have no clue, no idea what true beauty looks like. And I am here to tell you, that on that night….beauty like looked a mother holding her child late in the evening in a place full of those whose lives hung by a thread. It looked like a child who didn’t take one breath, one more day lived, one moment with his sweet parents for granted. It looked like a father watching and hoping and praying every second of every minute of every hour of every day that his son would improve and grow and progress and get stronger so that he could fulfill his mission here in this life.

That is beauty. That is real. That is love.