Beauty is earned

I have always been a believer in the premise that beauty is not only 1) in the eye of the beholder or 2) only skin deep or 3) more important to be beautiful on the inside than the outside, but I would suggest that there is yet another credo.  Beauty must be earned.  Stay with me while we explore this notion.

I am sure you are wondering what in the world does that mean and how does it relate to RA?  In my mind beauty encompasses so much more than just outward appearance, despite the fact that physical looks is what most people think of when the word beauty is mentioned.  I happen to believe that true beauty is something we earn as we move through life.

How we treat others, how we approach our work, how we nurture our families and loved ones, how we give back to our communities all become part of the "coins of care" that determine just how much beauty we have "earned".

I have come across so many definitions of beauty it is fascinating.  But there are commonalities among them.  All express the notion that beauty is a combination of harmonious qualities that please the senses, often times held beneath the surface, in the soul, waiting to emerge.

That says to me that a person can acquire beauty in its truest meaning by striving to provide others with that sense of harmony that will please their senses.  And when I think that through to its fullest conclusion, that also means that beauty is earned by the way in which we live our lives.

When you have a disease like RA finding people who are "beautiful" is not always easy. Nor is it easy for us to be "beautiful" in the ways I have outlined.  Can we find them? Yes. Can we earn beauty? Yes.  It just takes a little more work. Something those of us with RA are quite used to.

Finding them for me meant not settling for anything less.  I knew that given the demands of RA I needed to surround myself with "beautiful" people and rid myself of those with the "ugly" qualities I had put up with pre-RA.  Once done, my life was so much better!

As to my own ability to "earn beauty", I started to look beyond myself and my RA and that not only earned me "caring coins" but fulfilled me in ways I never imagined.  One example was forming the RA Support Group in our region.  It has been 5 years now and the level of support, joy, fellowship and friendship that has been derived from this endeavor far exceeded my expectations!

The most beautiful people I know are those that illicit in me a sense of joy, contentment, confidence, self-esteem, love, etc. All of the qualities that make my life complete and happy in the truest sense.  They are always present and attentive in our conversations.  They are genuine and true in their expressions.  They are reliable.  They are fair in how they treat others.  They are, in my eyes, beautiful!

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