When I was young, I was made to believe that women is God’s second best and that our existence depends solely on men. Wasn’t Eve created for the pleasure of Adam? As I can remember, God saw how lonely Adam was so He then decided to create someone for his companion. Therefore, we wouldn’t be here if not for men’s loneliness.
Please do not be mislead. This is not about religious beliefs. This is about the society and the way it sees women and its effect on my younger years. Though most of the world has shifted the way they deal with the female population, the impact the past left on my growing up years relatively hit me more than I am willing to.
When I was young, I stayed away from “taking care of one’s self”. I wanted to be reckless. I wanted to behave like rowdy boys behave. To run like I’ve been chased by dogs, to climb like there’s no danger of falling and to be able to match whatever talent the male population has dominated (which is almost everything).
I competed with boys back home in every game and would curse myself for almost always falling short – for being a little much weaker, slower and sensitive. Though I hid any trace of emotions back then, somehow my eyes would always betray me and I hated myself more.
I never learned to care much about me in a physical sense because I was under the impression that men don’t care about aesthetics so why should women care?
I used to cut my hair short because I didn’t want to be seen combing my hair like I am obsessed with it. I wore baggy pants and convince myself that it makes every movement easier when in fact, i just wanted to avoid skirts or skinny jeans because they are “too woman” for my taste. I did not want to learn about make-ups when I was in high school and college because that’s too feminine.
But, in the long run, this way of thinking impacted my self-confidence. No matter how much I defy the expectation society has on women, it creeps into my nerves and I coil myself into oblivion. I made my existence as unnoticeable as the dust in the middle of the dessert because I was not comfortable with myself.
Therefore, women need not to meet anyone’s expectation (even God’s if ever He has those kind of expectations which I highly doubt so). She only has to live up to her own comfort. She must give herself enough attention that would let her move with ease. She must do things that would bring her confidence.
After reading Manly Women it opened my eyes to reasons why I was reluctant about my feminity like I was almost willing to change what I was given. It dawned on me that my childhood years affected my opinion about becoming the real me. It affected my acceptance towards vulnerability and sensitivity. I realized these are not women’s weakness but they are weapons. Weapons that make us uncover ourselves more and understand women’s nature.
I encourage all women to make a promise: to embrace our sexuality. Let’s make a promise to love ourselves. Let’s promise to take care of what was given to us and to make ourselves better. Promise to do things that will bring us confidence instead of shame. Be proud of the fact that you are a woman and of the things you can give to the world like warmth.
This piece of art where we thrive would never be a better place to live without women’s presence. May all of you, remember that.
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