Feeling complete unto yourself can be a feat akin to a magic trick unless we make this a conscious goal for ourselves. No amount of jewelry, diamonds, attention, shopping sprees or high limit credit cards can fill the spaces inside which can be filled with so much more. Things like confidence, self-esteem, purposefulness and direction are terms that are abstract and bandied about so much we often lose sight of what they really mean.
As we mature, it is our social responsibility as women to pass down a legacy to our daughters and granddaughters, our students and young female atheletes, not of Prada, but of pride; not of plastic surgery, but of carving a life for yourself that is meaningful and rich.
Some of our artists, poets and musicians are still admirably fighting for the cause of the the inner wealth of women and while they are hauntingly, achingly eloquent, we need these voices to be louder and we need to march with them in this stand against the tyranny of consumerism.
Voices like Katie Makkai echo out in the darkness of the shopping mall, where little girls gaze up longingly at mannequins and teenagers take three thousand pictures of themselves to post on facebook, just to feel real.
Teaching ourselves and the young women coming after us to treasure our inner gifts and our offerings to our communities is not an angry, hateful gesture, but a healing one. Can we take the lens of reality television off of our eyes and protect theirs so that looking past the perfect teeth and shiny hair becomes the norm rather than the exception? We owe it to ourselves and to younger women to realize that, just being who we are, we are enough.
Aimee Boyle is a regular contributor to EmpowHER. She lives and teaches special education in CT.