I have a little sister. She's sweet, funny, bright, ambitious, clever, and has these incredibly long, lush eyelashes that make me wonder how I missed out on that end of the gene pool. She got into the top choir at school in her freshman year, reads more than anyone I know, and is constantly at work on 2 or 3 novels at a time.
She is also 15, which means she gets embarrassed easily and, as a keen blusher, regularly. She's perfectly confident singing in front of crowds, or having people edit her writing, but if she has to talk to a boy or receives a compliment, her cheeks pink up and suddenly, she's tongue-tied, which of course makes her even more embarrassed.
Naturally, she hates it, and naturally, I think it's adorable. That's not to say I haven't had my fair share of I"m-so-mortified-I-want-to-crawl-into-a-cave-and-disappear-forever moments, but the big sister perspective has given me a more friendly view to embarrassment in general.
This much-maligned attribute of modesty is actually a wonderful part of being a human, especially, I think, a young woman. It's a part of us that may be discouraging at times, but signals, as Wendy mentioned in A Return to Modesty, that something important is happening to us. When we're ashamed, when we blush, it means we're feeling something! We're feeling the need to protect something; our dignity, self-image, virtue, or even our elbows. To me, that's what modesty is about-- having something you believe is worth protecting, and embarrassment may be your best friend on the protection front.
So the next time you're feeling embarrassed, cheer up! It's part of being a person, modest or otherwise. And remember, your big sister, your mom, or I, still think you're great.