To Be Proud

October 3, 2016

The weight of insecurity drops my heart down to the core of this earth as I recognize myself amongst a crowd of people. I despise my body, which feels as if it is radiating excessively with my flaws. This rock of self-consciousness leaves an unpleasant grip on my chest and an urgent desire to have a central internal force pull in all my bones making me so small until I am no longer an identifiable mark in this world.  

Growing up as a girl in our twisted society, many aspects of my life, if not all, revolved around the importance of physical beauty and perfection. Compliments were geared towards leaving me superficially validated until another person would easily rip that stamp of approval off, along with my pride. My self-confidence was founded on the idea that if those around me were happy with me and gave their endorsements on my existence, than I had worth. If people did not approve of my external self, than I thought that I must be doing something wrong and I should feel obligated to fix it. The uncomfortable feeling of judgment was dismissed because as a girl, I was taught to believe that looking pretty was more than enough. I was academically challenged and am very motivated, yet society believes that that burden of intellectual victory is not enough for a girl and she should naturally feel that the burden of physical perfection should also be achieved.

For me, the word mirror does not have such a simple meaning as an object that displays a reflection. It is rather an object that displays the reflection of my physical form in which I have stared at for minutes, and hours, and days, hoping that the critical glare of my eyes will change the physical form of my body. The time I have spent looking into a mirror represents a scary number in which my potential to grow as a deeper, smarter, and more confident human being has been viciously repressed by my desperate want to be praised and envied on my physical self. The time I have spent looking at my reflection has shaped itself into tears. It has shaped itself into hatred for myself as well as the world, leaving a scar so deep that only a reversal in time and a change in the people can fix.

However, my insecurities are not unique to me, but they are rather a manipulative force used by society to turn many girls into self-doubting, unconfident beings who believe that they need to change in order to be valuable. Not only should we shame society for this internalized oppression of the female body, but we should also empower girls to feel their best being their raw self. We should look to women who have broken these repressive chains as role models. We should grow a love for ourselves that is so strong that the any form of self-hatred cowers in humility when compared to the passionate strength of the female. This world must truly understand that this continued subjugation of a woman’s potential is not only harmful to women, but as well as the whole world because they are restraining themselves from experiencing true growth.

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