The Quest for Beauty


Dylan knew something nobody else realized.  She knew there was something inside her.  Something trying to find it’s way out.  Something beautiful.  And she just knew, if she could find someway to let it out, it would touch other people.  Maybe even help them.  There were only two problems: 1) she didn’t know how to get it out, and 2) she didn’t exactly know what it was she needed to get out.  But she knew something was in there.


One day, she heard a beautiful song.  “Maybe,” she said, “my beauty will come out as a song.”  So she sat down at the piano to  compose a beautiful song.  The only trouble was, she didn’t know how to compose music.   It didn’t matter to her, she moved her fingers along the keys just like she had seen her sister do.  But her mom came in and told her to quit pounding on the piano.  “Maybe,” Dylan said, “my beauty isn’t a song after all.”

But what could it be?

A few days later, her mother read her a bedtime story.  Dylan noticed her mother sniffing.  “What’s wrong?” she asked.

“This is such a beautiful story,” her mother smiled through her tears.  “It’s been my favorite since I was your age.”

A story can be beautiful?  Dylan thought.  Oh, yes, I will write a beautiful story.

The next day, Dylan sat down to write.  But she didn’t know what to write about.  She kept thinking about the story from the night before.  “I can’t write a story that’s already been written,” she decided and put her pen and paper away.

How was she ever going to let the beauty out?

A few days later, her parents took her to a play.  The play made her laugh.  At the end everyone clapped.

“Beautiful,” she heard someone behind her exclaim.

Beautiful?  Dylan thought.  Maybe I can be an actress.

The next time her school had a play, she tried out.  But didn’t get a part.

That night, her mother heard her crying in her bedroom.

“What’s wrong?” her mother asked gently.

“I don’t know how to get my beauty out,” sobbed Dylan.

“Your beauty?” her mother asked while dabbing Dylan’s tears with a kleenex.

“I tried composing a song, but I can’t even read music.  So I tried writing a story and I couldn’t think of anything to write.  So I thought I’d be an actress, and I didn’t get a part in the school play.  Maybe there’s no beauty in me after all!”

Her mother hugged her gently.  “There’s beauty in you.”

Dylan looked at her mother.  “You have to say that, you’re my mother.”

Her mother smiled warmly.  “Hey, I happen to know it’s true.”

Dylan looked down at the floor, still unable to believe her.

“Some people have to compose a song, write a story, or act in a play to let their beauty shine, but you don’t.”

Dylan sniffed. “Is that supposed to make me feel better?”

Her mother hugged her again.  “You don’t need to do all that, you have a better way to let your beauty out.”

“I do?”

“Of course.”

Dylan waited for an explanation.  “How?”


Her mother gently clicked foreheads with her.  “Through your smile and laugh.  Everybody loves your smile and they love to hear you laugh.”

“They do?” Dylan asked hopefully.

“They do.  People tell me all the time what a warm smile you have.  I know for a fact, it has cheered up many people.”

“It has?”  Dylan couldn’t help but smile.

“See,” her mom grabbed a hand mirror off the dresser.  “See what other people see?  That right there is the most beautiful thing.”

Dylan couldn’t help herself and looked in the mirror.  She had to admit, It was a pretty good smile.  She might even say, it was beautiful.

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