I find it easy to see beauty in the natural world. For example, the weather today, while not beautiful by some people’s standards, is gorgeous to me. It’s overcast, a little rainy, and best of all – the predicted high is 70 degrees. HAPPY.
I find it easy to see beauty in others. We had a division-wide breakfast this morning, and as is my custom, I enjoyed people-watching. In the sea of green (Friday is pride day!), I noticed the special touches people added to make themselves stand out from the crowd.
Crowds, however, are not my friend when it comes to feeling beautiful myself. Being in a crowd makes me feel awkward and unattractive. It’s not so much a comparison thing as it is a matter of logistics.
Crowded rooms are not a friend to the hot-natured. I live in the wrong state. I have never in my life walked anywhere without sweating at least a little, no matter how cold it is outside, but as long as the weather hovers near 65 and isn’t too humid, I can usually still arrive at my destination generally presentable (i.e., not completely soaked through). Unfortunately, the temperature doesn’t dip that low in Texas for the majority of the year. I dress in layers, not because less clothing actually does anything to make me more comfortable and less sweaty, but because that way, I can add a sweater or a dark jacket once I get to my location to camouflage the fact that underneath it all, I just look like I’ve run a marathon. Of course, the sweater or jacket then makes me sweat more for the few minutes that I spend acclimating to the cooler climate of the building, making my face red and the people around me nervous that they’re about to have a medical situation on their hands. I haven’t figured out how to make the transition in a less awkward way, because there usually isn’t time (or a place) to spend ten minutes cooling off. I’m just herded into the crowd (some of which I noticed were experiencing the same problems, so it’s not just me. I feel your pain, friends!).
Also, crowded rooms are not staged for the rotund. I seriously contemplated not going back for a second cup of coffee this morning in order to avoid weaving through the tight spaces between the tables. In the end, of course, I went back (because please – what in the world is EVER going to keep me from more coffee?), but the thought of navigating the room layout gave me pause. And my hesitation was not without merit. I did indeed bump some elbows and have to squish a little too close to people WHOM I DO NOT KNOW (*deep breaths*) in order to simply make it across the room. And I can’t help but remember that I never gave this any thought when I sported a healthier weight. I mean, I’m sure I worried about other beauty-adjacent topics, but the immense amount of space I require just to get through the room was not one of them.
Sometimes, beauty is hard.