September 12, 2013 Oh, Bananas
I originally wrote this for my daughter and her friend’s blog several years ago. At the time they were both just starting middle school. I think the message is one that needs to be heard no matter your age.
Being in middle school is filled with many challenges and complications. Not only are you more aware of what other friends and peers are thinking, wearing, and doing, but it also seems that your body changes everyday. I know in our house, my tween seems to grow everyday. However, it seems her body isn’t growing “evenly”.
One week it seems her feet have grown two sizes. The next week her shorts are a little shorter. The following week nothing seems to fit, and her feet have grown two more sizes.
As a mom, I have the privilege to sit back and watch as my girls blossom and bloom into beautiful (and very individual) flowers. There are many changes for us ahead. Changes physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Perhaps you are also going through some of these similar changes.
To help us (and yes I said “us”) prepare for these changes, we are reading a fabulous book together called “Preparing Your Daughter for every Woman’s Battle” by Shannon Ethridge. “Wait a minute,” you might be thinking. “Battle? I thought we were talking about womanhood.”
Yes, we are talking about. . . (dare I say the “P” word?) Puberty. What you may or may not know it that there is battle going on all around you. Perhaps you have already noticed the bombardments of messages about sex. As your body changes from childlike to ladylike, you will encounter many ideas and thoughts about boys, dating, and your body.
I really enjoyed a recent chapter we shared called “Flattering Curves Ahead.”
Do you see this fruit in the picture? Don’t worry about which one you like to eat, but look at the fruit and think about the shapes of the fruit. Which fruit has the best shape? The long, tall banana? The round, bumpy orange? Perhaps the pear-shaped pear? Obviously the “best shaped” fruit is the fruit that is shaped the way it is supposed to grow. We don’t think it’s odd to see a long banana, but if the banana was big and round like an apple. . .now THAT would be strange.
It’s the same way with you. Think of yourself as a piece of fruit. We don’t decide how fruit will taste simply because of the color on the outside. It is what is on the inside that helps us to know what fruit we like. Take this pear, for example. When I eat a pear I do not like it when they are hard and crisp like an apple. I like pears to be soft and sweet. If it’s too soft, like a banana though, it isn’t going to be good either. It’s not the shape of the pear that makes it delicious, but how the pear has matured and grown.
It’s the same with you. No matter how you look
or green. . .
You are beautiful you!
Make no apologies for how you look.
Consider this Bible verse:
You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb.
Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!
Your workmanship is marvelous
and how well I know it!
Your beauty, your true beauty is found on the inside. Even though it may seem like there is some other girl who has it all:
the perfect hair, the perfect laugh, the perfect friends
it doesn’t make YOU any less important or wonderful.
This last fruit is a mango. I remember one of the first times I ever saw a mango. My brother had brought it home from the store and it called it an alien fruit. It was a strange sight to see, like some sort of alien egg. Sometimes mangoes are even different colors and shades. The seed on the inside is even strange. (It’s like a flat disk.) Despite the oddity and uniqueness of the fruit, it is still a fruit.
The funny thing about fruits is that I don’t like all fruits. In fact, there are probably fruits that you like that I don’t. There may be girls you know that you don’t really like. Or maybe, there are girls that don’t really like you. It’s okay. In fact it’s more than okay. Because when it’s all said and done, we are all a little fruity. Learn to love yourself for you who are, not what you look like.