Am I Beautiful?

Asalaamu alaikum!

Standards of beauty change everyday, once upon a time skinny was the trend and woman would go under the knife to have fat removed. Now its the complete opposite, instead of having fat removed, fat or silicones are surgically implanted to create the curvy figure. As a woman I often follow certain trends to "keep up" so I'm not left behind. As a hijabi, it becomes difficult but its something I still be beautiful. This is not out of insecurity or low self esteem, but beauty is something we all seek subconsciously. What is beauty exactly?, what is this thing we look for when we look in the mirror, because we are looking for something specific....I just haven't figured out what it is. Well I want to share a story that gave me a new perspective, through the eyes of a senile woman......

Being a nurse can be redundant or feel like routine for awhile then all of a sudden switch and you panic. This day, was more of a routine day, quiet and nothing out of the ordinary. Normally while I push the medcart around I have this one lady follow me with a baby doll telling me stories of her home and how she misses it. Everyday she would tell me how beautiful she thought I was, and how perfect I looked. I was flattered for the most part, but considering she had bad eyesight I never thought much of it. She couldn't really see my features properly, I'm sure I was just a blur and at times I questioned if she understood the cloth on my head was not my hair. She would always tell me I shouldn't be working so much and I should preserve this "beauty" of mine, and still I thought nothing of it. One day, she didn't follow me around, it was a bit unusual for me not to have my walking buddy but because she had dementia, I took it as she must've forgotten today. I went to her room to check up on her, she was on her chair rocking the baby doll and lulling it to sleep. She looked up at me and says "Hey I remember you, you're that beautiful young girl", I giggled and asked "what makes me so beautiful and different from you?" and this was her response......

"you have all your teeth", she said as she showed me her toothless grin. "Your limbs and joints move properly" she said as she struggled to bend her knees up. "You can breathe without it being painful", she said as her voice quaked. "You can see me and I struggle to see you, but I see that you are beautiful" she said while rocking her baby doll "You look like how you are supposed to look like" she said at last, "thats why you are so beautiful".

After a few weeks she started to deteriorate and had forgotten me completely. I wanted her to remember me, to remember my name, and I would try to tell her things to trigger something.....but nothing happened. One day I decide to change her name to beautiful, and she responded with, "you are the beautiful one, you have all your teeth!".