Growing Up With a Gorgeous Mother Made Me Hate The Beauty

My mum's beauty was my burden

Photo by Ghaly Wedinly on Unsplash

II didn’t realize how beautiful my mum was until I wasn’t around eleven or twelve. For me, she was just my mum. Kind, loving, caring, and sometimes angry. Being pretty and gorgeous meant nothing for me, and I didn’t notice someone’s appearance. I saw others by the way they were. Most of them were sweet to me as the waitress from the local bar, who gave me extra cream on my hot chocolate. Some were rude as the older neighbor on the second floor who always complained when we were playing under his window.

My mum had me at sixteen, so she always seemed like my older sister. But on top of that, she looks like a model. Grandma and I enjoy watching photo albums when I come to her house. In all the photos, you can observe my mother’s beauty. As a kid, she had curly blond hair and blue-green eyes with long eyelashes. She seemed like the kid model who smiles at you from Gap commercial with shiny white teeth.

When my grandma turns the pages to the teenage pictures of my mum, you notice how she is growing up into a stunning woman. She was a dancer, town goddess, and the best student in her high school. She could get in any university with a full paid scholarship.

Nothing was standing in the way of her bright future.

Nothing, except me.

I had a good childhood, growing up with my mum’s unconditional love and support from my lovely grandma. And as I already mentioned, I didn’t understand my mum was gorgeous until this particular day. We had a school break, and I was playing with my classmates.

Near us was a group of older boys and their leader was the typical school bully. Suddenly he pointed at me and screamed so loud that the whole playground heard him.

“How much money your mum makes with porn?” he said and started chuckling.

My mum doesn’t look like a porn star and she doesn’t wear mini skirts or a cleavage till the floor. But she also doesn’t dress like a typical mother and hide her body. Her figure is shaped like an hourglass, with D cups and big booty. She is a sporty person who loves working out, pilates during the week, and hiking with me on weekends. She prefers high heels, tight jeans, and silky blouses.

With a new perspective, given by the bully, I started observing people around my mum, and I noticed signs everywhere.

When she picked me up at school, all the kids would stare at her, especially the older boys who seemed fascinated. In the restaurants, I could feel the stabbing eyes at my back when we walked to the table. During food shopping, retailers would come offering their help, and they would watch her with big puppy eyes, as they would want to say: “Please, love me and give me attention!” Even when we went walking, there was always a jogger or two who came to flirt with her.

My mum usually just smiled and rejected them nicely. I guess she was used to all the attention. But I wasn’t. I just enter this world of beauty, and I already hated it.

Being a teenager with a supermodel mum was strange for me. I was a loner, shy, and cautious. The girls at school start using makeup, wearing provocative clothes, and they wanted to be attractive. Their only intention was to catch boys’ attention and getting adored.

For years, I had a first-row seat for the movie named Living with a goddess mother. Men were dancing around her and trying to impress her. When we went out, people were staring — women were judging, and men were drooling.

This tremendously changed the meaning of beauty for me. It made me sick, and I didn’t want to be pretty. I don’t know if it was because of my shy personality, or was it because I was living in the shadow of my mother.

But I realized something — people don’t care what it is inside the box because they only notice the beautiful wrapping around it.

Adults were not the only ones impressed by my mother’s appearance. The girls wanted to be my friends so they could hang out with her and learned about beauty tricks and boys. I can’t blame them because she was like an older sister they always craved. I would pretend to listen to their conversations but honestly, I didn’t care about the newest hairstyles or how you can cover the pimple using only a corrector.

The boys would use a sneaky technique to come closer to her presence. They wanted to borrow my notes or help me with studying. They would come to our house, and at the moment when I would tell them she is at work, they would disappear.

These experiences would make me even sicker of the beauty world. It doesn’t matter who I am or what I’m thinking, till I have my supermodel parent. She was my world ticket — I could use her to get everywhere, and without her I was nothing.

I wasn’t jealous of her and our relationship was great. Maybe I would feel different if I would crave other kids’ acceptance or affection. But I was a lone-wolf, and I never blamed my mother for being born pretty.

Things changed when I went to a high school far from our home. Nobody knew my mum, because she never picked me up. I escaped from her supermodel curse and fame.

It was just me, the shy girl with an average face and regular clothes.

The fact that nobody knew my mum was a refreshing change for me. I transformed from the nervous mouse to the social butterfly. I found new friends and met them after school. But I never invited anybody over to my house because I was terrified of breaking the spell.

The fact that made me so brave and open was simple — I knew people wanted to be my friends because of me. They didn’t have a secret plan and endure with me only to come to my mum.

This simple fact made me grow from my shell to have a social life. I had a secret life, and I keep my mum away from school. She was always asking why nobody come over, and if I want that she pick me up. I lied, hide, and manipulate. There was no way I will let her in my world and take the attention.

One day, when the loud school bell rang and set us free, my friends and I run out. We were loudly talking if we should grab a pizza or burger behind the corner. I could feel the fall wind coming through the open school doors along with the whispering.

“Who is she? Wow, look at her. Damn, what a bomb!”

Older boys were staring with open mouths and bulging eyes. I didn’t need to seek for a reason for their admiration, because I knew.

I knew before I saw her long black hair, symmetrical face with blue-green eyes and full lips. She was standing at the end of the street with her beige heels, pencil skirt, and silky blouse. She seemed so innocent and happy and she started waving when she noticed me.

I could feel everyone’s eyes on me and my friends started asking: “Is this your sister? Omg, she is gorgeous! Can we meet her?”

The story of my life was happening again. I found a lousy excuse and I ran to the car with the rage burning inside me.

My mum drove away and she was excited: “I finished earlier today and I thought we can spend the afternoon together. Were this your friends? They looked so nice. Why you ran so fast? Are you ashamed of me?” she laughed, but I can feel her nervousness.

As she would know.

I explode and cover her with the rage that grew inside me for years: “Why you need to come here with your tight clothes and pretty face? You destroyed everything! Can’t you just be a normal mum? Can you be ugly for a change?

Her hands were shaking on the wheel, and she was on the edge of crying. She was trying to talk with me but I was furious. Everything changed at school and my friends annoyed me with a million questions about her. The boys I didn’t even know came to chat with me. The whole world -once again- demanded a piece of my mum.

I went to visit grandma two days after the incident. She knew I could tell by the way she looked at me, but she didn’t say a word. We drank strawberry tea when she opened a white envelope with the photos inside. The pictures I never saw in the albums.

Grandma sat close to me, showing me the first photo. There was my mum, with a tired face, sitting behind the kitchen table full of books. “She just had you and was studying too hard, trying to finish high school. I told her to slow down, but she didn’t want to. I know she wanted to prove the whole town that she is more than just a pretty face and teenage mum.”

Then she revealed the next photo of my mum with a dark face and puffed eyes. “Here,” grandma began with a quiet and sensitive voice: “You had less than two years. Your mum tried to make some friends, mostly that you would have some company. She was trying with other mums in the kindergarten and the parks. Nobody wanted to be her friend. Other women saw her as a threat because she was pretty, single, and so young.”

Grandma’s voice became thinner, and I could feel the years of pain kept in her. In the next photo, there was my mum in the casual outfit, with a big smile and sparkling eyes: “This was her first day at a new job. She was so proud. I was so proud! Little that we knew that the boss was a pervert and he employed her only to harass her. After that, she cried for days.”

She threw the picture on the table as it would burn her and grabbed the next one. I almost felt from the chair! There was my mum, with red eyes and a shaved head!

“She had a mental breakdown. The only thing that kept her up was you” my grandma looked at me, and her eyes were watery. “She applied for every possible job around here. Nobody took her seriously or they only wanted her because of the looks. In the last interview, the boss told her she is just too pretty. He said they are looking for brains, not beauty. Can you imagine that? They didn’t even give her a chance! She had both, the brains and beauty, but somehow her beauty took over everyone’s brains! She came home and shaved her head. Her strong long hair was lying around the bathroom floor, and she told me that maybe without the hair, people would finally see what is under them.”

My grandma rubbed her eyes while my heart was racing. Looking at mum, having a Britney Spears episode made me ashamed of myself. I didn’t have a clue about her demons!

My grandma hugged me tightly and whispered in my ear: “My girl, one day you will understand that being beautiful is not always so beautiful. It can become your weakness and not strength.”

Later, when I returned home, I held mum tighter than ever.

I cried and apologized, and then looked her for the way she was — beautiful, smart, fun, and with unconditional love for me in her big heart.

My mum was judged, loved, and hated for being beautiful for her whole life. I want to be a person who sees her inside beauty and her wonderful personality. My mum doesn’t need another admirer or enemy, but she needs me to love and accept her for the way she was born.

Writer, reader and over-thinker/ I write and then I write a bit more/ I'm not settling for breadcrumbs, don't need the bread, I want the whole bakery

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