This post is part of YummyMummyClub.ca‘s support of the Dove® Celebrate Mom Contest. I received compensation as a thank you for my participation. This post reflects my personal opinion about the information provided by the sponsors.
She is beautiful and I think now she knows it.
It’s not because she’s beautiful naturally, though she is.
It’s not because people tell her she is, though they do.
And it’s not because she’s magazine-cover perfect, because no one is. Not even cover girls.
It’s because she started building her beauty from the inside.
I first met Cheryl when we were both pregnant with our first boys. She usually sat across the room from me in our prenatal yoga class and my first impression of her was that she was perky. And she is, though that word does not even come close to describing all that she is.
She reveled in her pregnancy while I grumbled about back pain, and when her son was born she became a mother in a way I did not.
I don’t mean this as a disparaging comment about my own mothering, just that Cheryl is the quintessential mom. Except there is no such thing. She simply does it her own way and makes it look easy while being willing to admit that sometimes it’s really hard.
Cheryl has since had another boy and she cherishes her role as a princess among men. There’s not much prim and proper about her, though. Just hard work and sweat. Lots of sweat.
Earlier this year Cheryl decided she had a dream of being something other than a full-time stay-at-home mom. This dream was always there, I think, but it rose to the surface and she scooped it up like a fish in a net. She caught it and didn’t let go.
She’s open about the fact that she used to be a size 18, though I was never really sure I believed her. Until, that is, she launched her new fitness training business and posted old pictures of herself to show her journey.
And when I read her goals as shared on her site I knew she really had it figured out.
Loving ourselves is not about looking good. It’s about feeling good. It’s about being healthy. It’s about taking advantage of our surroundings and getting outside for a workout in the fresh air. It’s about raw veggies at 3 p.m. And sometimes it’s about ice cream, and that’s okay too.
I was so proud of my friend when she told me she was pursuing her fitness certification, but when she launched her site last month and I could see exactly what she was trying to do I almost cried. She is living her dream and in doing so she is inspiring other women to live theirs – not by running or lifting weights but by thinking about life as something to be lived, actively, passionately and deliberately.
She encourages women to think about what they can do. She knows we each need to choose our own goals and acknowledges that sometimes we need a helping hand to get there. She – especially now – will be the first to tell you it’s not too late.
“Why choose me?” she asks on her site. “Because I know life isn’t a dress rehearsal, and I’m doing everything I can to make the most of it. I want to help you do the same for yours.”
Cheryl has done that for me in more ways than I can count. She has dragged me out in the snow to train for a 10K. She has dragged me through stair workouts with the sheer force of her perky enthusiasm. And, perhaps most importantly, she has talked me through some of my hardest moments as a mother. For all of that, I cherish her. She is the friend every mom – every woman – should have.
I am nominating Cheryl for the Dove Celebrate Mom Contest as someone who is a role model for women and girls.
Only 9% of Canadian girls aged 10 to 17 are comfortable using the term “beautiful” to describe their looks. However, a positive role model can make a world of difference by helping a girl develop a positive relationship with beauty and encourage her to achieve her full potential. When girls feel they have a role model, they are less likely to let anxiety about looks hold them back.
I see Cheryl acting as a role model for women and girls – her friends, her clients, her friends’ and neighbours children – and it inspires me. I can think of no better way to honour that inspiration than by putting her name forward for this contest.
Visit www.CelebrateMom.ca by September 4th to nominate a mom who’s an inspiring role model to women and girls in the Dove® Celebrate Mom Contest. Four inspiring women will win $2,500 for herself and $2,500 to be donated to the charity of her choice.
And check out more stories on YummyMummyClub.ca about amazing role model moms: www.yummymummyclub.ca/family/mummy/celebrate-a-mom-in-your-life.