It’s been a little over five months since theStitch launched and we’re as determined as ever to change the narrow and often harmful definition of beauty that we’ve been force fed by the media. With your help we’ve begun to change the conversation and have highlighted others who are doing the same. We passionately believe that beauty means so much more than how you look; it isn’t a shape, it’s an attitude.
The way we look is largely a function of genetics, but often, life deals us a blow that can change how we look – sometimes just temporarily but often more permanently. But does that change a person’s beauty?
There’s a wonderful South African Zulu greeting, “Sawubona,” that means “I see you.” The significance of those three words at their deepest level means “I acknowledge your humanity, your dignity and your personality.” Even without knowing the person, South Africans greet each other in this way. It’s a way of saying “I know there is more to you than what my eye can see and in this moment I acknowledge you.”
Jumping over to Australia, “Women’s Weekly Australia” saw the humanity and dignity of Turia Pitt when they asked her to be on the cover of their July magazine. Three years ago Turia was caught in a brushfire while running a marathon in Western Australia. She suffered burns on 64 percent of her body and was not expected to live. But Turia defied the odds and survived.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Turia spent 864 days in the hospital, enduring more than 100 surgeries, had fingers amputated and had to learn to walk again. Yet the physical feat she endured was not the most breathtaking part of her story. It was that someone can suffer such pain and be so visibly scarred and have the strength of spirit to call themselves the luckiest girl in the world – which is what Turia said in the accompanying article of her July Cover.
When Editor in Chief Helen McCabe met Turia as part of their Women of the Future judging panel she knew Turia had to be on the cover.
“Any attempt to describe the magic and beauty of Turia seems to get lost in platitudes or clichés. Yet I have never met a more remarkable person.”
Australians agreed, giving the magazine its highest grossing numbers yet (2.2 million versus their average of 1.8), beating out covers that had previously been graced by Nicole Kidman and Prince William and Kate during their first trip to Australia.
“Being on the cover of The Australian Women’s Weekly is a huge honor. I feel very humbled,” Turia said. “For me, it sends the message that confidence equals beauty. There are a lot of women out there who are so beautiful but don’t have the confidence, and that’s what gets you over the line.”
On her website, she says her time is spent training for an Iron Man, doing yoga, studying for an MBA and travelling the world giving motivational speeches. She’s also released a memoir, Everything to Live For.
“Never, never, never give up. Live life to its fullest. Be determined. Persevere,” says Pitt.
Turia, theStitch sends you greetings: “Sawubona.” We see your humanity, your dignity and your personality. And we see your beauty!
theStitch | #EYOB