Michelle Drake Richardson
Admiration may be the perfect word to describe how I feel about my mom. She’s beautiful despite everything she has been through with her health and personal life. She never lets things get her down and can move forward and overcome the odds. My mom is not just beautiful physically but she is beautiful as a person. She is always there when I need a shoulder to cry on or when I have a life situation I don’t know how to handle. She is the first person to tell me that I am beautiful and the first one to say what did you do to your hair? The lessons that my mom has taught me are infinite and even though we may not see each other as much as we would like my mom is still the most beautiful woman I know inside and out. I can never replace what she has taught me about myself and what beauty means. It’s not all about fancy clothes and perfect makeup. Beauty comes from within and until you can be happy with yourself your true beauty will not shine through.
One of my favorite stories from my mom was about Calgon. When I was little we always had it in our house and I loved turning my bath water into a pretty blue, pink or green. My mom always told me you need three things to make a perfect night, a bath, new pajamas and clean sheets on your bed. Calgon was something very simple that meant a lot to my mom and now to me. When she was in her early twenties she was married and had a son. It turned out not to be a picture perfect marriage and after barely escaping the situation she moved out with an infant on her own. She barely had any money to buy food but when she had a little extra she always treated herself to a Calgon bath. It was something so simple yet so meaningful to her that it has stayed in my brain to this day. My mom taught me from the beginning that you have to treat yourself even if it’s the littlest thing. You have to put yourself first every now and again even if it’s for a thirty minute bath.
I learned a lot of life lessons through my mom not only about beauty but how being yourself makes you beautiful. Being yourself and not letting others bring you down can be one of the best beauty secrets. My mom and I were on our own for most of my childhood and adolescence. After my parents divorced it was just her and I and we became the best of friends. I can remember going out and getting new pajamas and sheets then coming home climbing into her bed and fall asleep watching a movie. It was a simple thing but at the time she was a single parent going to college full time. Our time together was limited but we always made the best of it. No matter how hard things got my mom always looked picture perfect and did everything she could to make me happy.
I remember watching my mom get ready for dates with my dad and she would always be meticulous with the perfect outfit, hair and makeup. She always had her own style from piles of cowboy boots to little black dresses. She kept it simple and minimal but always classy and ladylike. She always said to be a lady no matter what situation you are in. Cross your legs, sit up straight and chew with your mouth closed even if you are at a bar. Although my mom was very ladylike she always knew how to have a good time. She loved parties, music and most of all dancing. My mom taught me to have a good time, look like a lady and always smile because no one likes a raincloud.
It’s funny when I sat down to write this article the memories and ideas flooded through my head about my mom and beauty. I thought I would write about us doing each other’s makeup or when she would crimp my hair for hours. When writing this it occurred to me that my mom taught me so much more about beauty than just the physical product of makeup. Beauty is about so much more than what mascara to buy. Beauty is something that we should all feel no matter who we are. You can have all the bags, lipsticks and concealer in the world but when you truly feel beautiful for who you are; that is the greatest life lesson my mom could have taught me.
Love you mom Happy Mother’s Day!!! xoxo
If you enjoyed this article, check out My Mother…Myself Part 2