Another word for “graceful” is “elegant.” I’ve always loved that word, and how much more intriguing it would be to embody such a description. When I think of graceful I think of someone who extends grace to those around her, who accepts people and genuinely loves them for who they are.
C.S. Lewis wrote about such an elegant woman in The Great Divorce,
But I have forgotten. And only partly do I remember the unbearable beauty of her face.
“Is it?…is it?” I whispered to my guide.
“Not at all,” said he. “It’s someone ye’ll never have heard of. Her name on earth was Sarah Smith and she lived at Golders Green.”
“She seems to be…well, a person of particular importance?”
“Aye. She is one of the great ones. Ye have heard that fame in this country and fame on Earth are two quite different things.”
… “And who are all these young men and women on each side?”
“They are her sons and daughters.”
“She must have had a very large family, Sir.”
“Every young man or boy that met her became her son – even if it was only the boy that brought the meat to her back door. Every girl that met her was her daughter.”
“Isn’t that a bit hard on their own parents?”
“No. There are those that steal other people’s children. But her motherhood was of a different kind. Those on whom it fell went back to their natural parents loving them more. Few men looked on her without becoming, in a certain fashion, her lovers. But it was the kind of love that made them not less true, but truer, to their own wives.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Great Divorce
An elegant woman builds people up, especially her significant other or husband, but everyone who happens upon her path in life – she takes time to encounter them, to embrace them with her very essence.
She is patient with people who would normally try others’ patience, she extends her friendship freely and nondiscriminantly.
She does not play favorites based on looks or popularity, but holds those close who she can see into their heart and tell that they are good.
She’s sees good in others even when (or rather especially when) they aren’t able to see it themselves – she believes in them.