She hasn’t been featured in a TV movie or show in over ten years nor appeared in film in a substantive role in over 20, yet at her death Elizabeth Taylor remains one of Hollywood’s most recognizable movie stars of all time. Hear her name and you think the Golden Age of Glamour or White Diamonds or scandalous, married eight times to seven men.
In her prime, she was arguably the most beautiful woman in America. Violet pools, her unforgettable eyes, perfectly sculpted brow, creamy complexion framed in black curls, seductive lips that begged kiss, curves that made women covet and men blush–in an era when that was still possible.
As she aged, physical and emotional flaws surfaced–battles with her weight and health, a revolving door of men, and a feisty temperament that often landed her in the headlines.
Yet in the midst of all that, she was known as loyal friend to those in her inner circle, she became voice and advocate for worthwhile causes, and she amassed wealth and success as a fine jewelry designer and perfume magnate.
And when she died on March 23, 2011, a nation mourned and remembered.
So many years past her commercial silver screen success, we still noticed her; we collectively grieved her as one of Hollywood’s best.
Which got me to wondering…what was it about her that we held onto, that made her death a subject of conversation and news coverage for days? Her physical beauty? Her ability to re-invent herself over and over again? Her humanitarian and activist roles on behalf of HIV and Aids research? ? Her strength and determination to pick herself up when she lay puddled on the ground? Her worldly success as a business woman?
Or is her most vibrant beauty found in her brokenness? Do her shadows reveal her sunshine?
What do you think? Was it all about another pretty face…or something more?
And pushing deeper, how can you apply this same line of thinking to self?