Why You Should Be The Woman You Want To Be On Your OWN Terms – NOT A Man’s
To My Dearest Sistas in 2013,
It is okay to be who you are. It is more than all right to love who you are. It should be the standard to assert your womanhood – on your own terms.
It is all right to throw the primitive ideals of patriarchy down and stomp them with every inch of your high heel (or ballet flat, or combat boots, or Crocs if you so choose to wear them)! It is all right to gather your own thoughts and think them, speak them, shout them out to the masses. It is your right to have a voice, to be who you are because you want to be.
Where we were once taught (and honestly, are STILL taught) to think and behave in ways that appeal to men because, you know, “landing a man” is the ultimate goal – we can choose another way of thinking. We can choose to find ourselves attractive, smart, resourceful, courageous, vulnerable, funny and BEAUTIFUL on our own terms. We can choose to see ourselves for who we truly are, not waiting for the male species to validate pieces of us and throw away the rest. It’s all well and good to be appealing to others but it’s so much more important to love ourselves for who we are regardless of who else does. A man’s interest is complementary to how highly we already think of ourselves. Gone are the days where we “present” ourselves before men hoping that we will be the “chosen one.”
We have been taught to give up so much of ourselves in pursuit of love and then we wonder why we have little to no clue who we are or what we truly believe in when a relationship ends. We have forgotten about ourselves. We don’t even know what we like about ourselves. We do not exist solely to be aesthetically pleasing to the male species. Our existence is not wrapped up in just making everyone else comfortable. We do ourselves the greatest injustice when we pretend to love football to “catch” a man. Or when we pile on the makeup just to seem perfect in someone else’s eyes. Do you really love football? Love it on your own terms. Do you really enjoy makeup? Wear it, don’t let it wear you for someone else’s visual pleasure. This letter is not a feminist rant, rather it is an argument in favor of self-love, self-nurturing and self-understanding as the thematic thread we should begin weaving through our lives.
We can join the school of thought that dresses sharp, keeps their hair done and makeup on point (when we choose to wear it) because WE ARE FLY – NOT because we are fiending for someone else to say we are. We choose not to sleep around because we care for our bodies and spirits – NOT because “good men don’t marry who*es.” We speak our minds (respectfully yet assertively) regardless of how some men may not like that quality in a woman. We cook because we want to or, in my case, because we like to eat, not because “cooking is the way to a man’s heart.” We think of ourselves it terms of ourselves and the God that created us. And if a good man has any sense at all, he’ll dig it.