Saturday, July 24, 2010

Up close and personal

I am joining a couple of favorite bloggers, Ariella and Ginny, in a portrait challenge.  I take a lot of pictures, but I don't like to be in front of the camera.  The last time I posted a self portrait, for my birthday last year, I had makeup on and took about 30 shots before I found one "post-able".

This time I mustered the nerve to forgo the makeup.  Just a touch of moisturizer.  No photo editing but to crop the photo and increase the exposure, as it was a bit dark.

I have never been happy with my looks.  I have come to terms with them, however.  In my twenties I could spend half an hour or more on makeup and hair, but now it's a ponytail and five minutes with a little blush and mascara, maybe a bit of concealer for the indications of sleeplessness, and I'm done.

I find myself concerned about looking old.  My anxieties about aging always had more to do with a fear of illness and suffering than about wrinkles and gray hair, but having young children has changed that.  I find myself nervous about looking like my children's grandmother.  After all, I had my first three kids between the ages of 35 and 40, and the last 3 between 40 and 45.  My own parents were 19 when I was born.  When my grandmother was my age, I was 9.  When Gemma finishes high school, I will be 64.  I find myself praying that she won't be completely embarrassed by me, and that I can be young at heart and in good enough health to have a lot of fun with her.

I try to impress upon my kids that true beauty is that which God sees.  We are what we are in His sight, no more, no less.  Purity of heart is true beauty.  Simplicity is true beauty.  Piety is true beauty.

In light of that, may we all grow more and more beautiful with age.


  1. Nadja, it is so good to see your beautiful face! And, you don't look old at all! In fact you look about ten years younger than you are at least!

  2. Well, I feel at least ten years younger than I am, so that's good to hear!

  3. i tried to do a challenge like that a few months ago too but i never like the way i look either and gave up.
    regardless i think you are very beautiful just as you are and don't need make-up.

  4. You are very beautiful and you look so young for 45! Really, you look quite a bit younger. Thanks for being so brave in showing this photo, it's very nice to meet you :)

  5. You look great! My dad was 38 when he had his first child. He was the age of most grandpas when we were in high school, but everyone always thought my dad was younger than he actually was.

  6. are so very beautiful...not just saying that because you've graced us with this lovely photo! Thanks for sharing...perhaps I'll have the young ones snap a shot, though I'm looking rather worn of late...true beauty is what's inside, no? Have a blessed day!

  7. Your wistful, elegant beauty exudes from your 45 year old face, dear Nadja.

    My face at 45 is framed by many more grey hairs than yours.


  8. Thanks...I'll be 47 in November, so I am even more thrilled by the compliment.

    I colored my hair for a while, but have been using a temporary color so that I can grow it out naturally.

    And I look a lot older at 4:45 when I get up in the morning!

  9. Hi Nadja! thank you for visiting my blog, it is so nice to meet you! You look beautiful! I recently 'went public' too. Scary! Had my kids late in life too, at age 38 and 40. So now I'm 55, with a 17 and a 15 year old. sometimes wish I still had young kids....

  10. aw!
    my beautiful nadja!
    those kids are keeping you young!
    always so glad to see a glimpse of your sweet face.
    you remind me of a pixie!
    cute. cute. cute.
    i just got a hair cut, so i might do this "self-portrait" thing too!

  11. Pixies don't have noses like mine!


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