I go through phases, especially at this time in my life. You know, try out the whole Eastern religions thing, wear tye dye, carry around a dog eared copy of Nietzsche's Beyond Good and Evil, eat tofu, etc. Well, for a year or so, I have been into whatever is placed on the bookshelf at Borders under "Women's Studies."
I'm into women.
Or rather, I'm into what makes us tick. What we've been through, what we currently go through, and what we will face in the future. How we are suppressed, oppressed, and dressed.
I made the theme of last week's V all about "real" beauty. I tried going without makeup for the sake of an article. I questioned females about their outlook on looks. I ended up confused.
I thought I would be "liberated" during the making of this issue. I thought I would welcome my bare eyes. I thought the women I held as role models would live up to my expectations; instead they were just as self-conscious as the rest of us. I thought I knew better.
But we're stuck.
We describe ourselves constantly using negative adjectives. Stupid girl. Ugly nose. Fat thighs.
We subscribe to whatever current trend is out there. And who started this trend? Does this person have some kind of a badge or a degree that makes them "official"? Even if they were official, do we have to listen?
No, we don't. We don't have to place our self worth in a new wardrobe, a perfect hairdo, or whether or not we followed our diet that day.
We can still be good people even if we are wearing a potato sack, sporting oily hair, and eating a donut. In fact, there shouldn't even be an "even." We are good people with burlap dresses, greasy manes, and jelly-filled pastries.
So here I am, sitting at the computer, pumping my fist. But not really. The sad fact is, we are hardly close to believing in our abilities. We can't imagine that underneath all of this unnecessary insecurity lies a strong woman. We will still get hung up, tied down, and spun around. We won't know where or who we are, but we'll try our damndest to find it.
It won't be found in a tube, a package, a smaller dress size, or a shopping mall window.
And as obvious and cliche as this is going to sound, it will truly be found inside. But first we need to step outside.
Best of luck, and I love you.