Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Questions of the Heart: Answers of Real Women Edition 9

Today's guest post is from an old friend. Madeleine is a good friend from college. I have always admired her for her vision and perseverance for doing great things in big and little ways. You can see that in her dedication to living and helping others live a clean and healthy lifestyle while keeping in touch with reality through her Shaklee business, involvement in the Thrive Now Network, and blog. I love the title, WhoopsYummy: Tales from a messy Brooklyn kitchen. It is so insightful about life in general, especially the kitchen (at least my kitchen, but I know I am not alone in feeling like my cooking is a bunch of mistakes that somehow is edible).
Way back when.
So proud of this wonderful mother and to call her a friend! 

Questions of the Heart: Answers of Real Women

By Madeleine

Madeleine Pidel
What makes a beautiful woman?

A beautiful woman is one who knows herself deeply, is at peace, and who cares enough to make a difference in the world around her through living authentically and passionately. I've come to realize the joy and simplicity can't be faked, and women who reflect these traits are truly beautiful to me.

What makes you feel beautiful?

For me, being strong is what makes me feel beautiful. Having struggled with body image as a young woman and athlete, (who hasn't?) I have come into a sense of great peace as a mother, understanding that our bodies are meant not just for ourselves but also to give life to our children, and to care for our families and communities. This is made possible by caring for ourselves--exercising, eating right, getting rejuvenated and seeking strength--both physically and interiorly, in how we live. It no longer is about me and the mirror; it's about having energy to run after my 3 year old in the park, to tote my 3 week old around, and to live a full Brooklyn life with my husband and friends.

What has had the greatest impact on how you view yourself and encouraged you to be yourself?

Definitely becoming a wife and mother. Incredibly so. Also, the wonderful relationships I've had with female friends--especially starting in college and early adulthood--realizing the beautiful journey into womanhood that we all travel on.

What is your beauty go-to for the days when you feel anything but beautiful?

I might have to say a fun, colorful pair of shoes, and jewelry. I definitely accessorize even if I don't have time to shower! Same goes for my kids--they are the ones whose hair may not be brushed, but their shoes are darn cute.

What would you like to share with other women to encourage them to recognize their value and to be beautiful?

I'd say understand who you are and what you are made for. Remember to accept and appreciate that your life is a gift and will not (should not) look exactly like anyone else's--so let's stop comparing and start sharing---the unique challenges we face, as well as our joys. Let's judge less and love more--and remember to just be with the people that matter to us--our modern lifestyles can often threaten to keep us so busy we don't remember how to simple be...Breaking out of a clichéd busy modern life (just because we can do it all--should we?) to be creators, dwellers, to live passionately and generously, to seek beauty, and to put relationships first--that's what I'm hoping to share with the women around me...and I am learning how to live and thrive one day at a time over here.

Thank you, dear friend!

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