A wish for International Women’s Day
As I re-read the post now, I can’t help but cry. Bawl, really. The sentiment still holds true although I’ll admit I have work to do on the brave part. In fact, if I’m being completely honest, I haven’t done enough to take my own advice. I owe it to myself and to others who are less privileged to be better. I’ll start by being better at being myself.
I came to a significant realization last week. One thing that I had been doing my whole life was not being myself around certain types of people. Specifically, people in traditional positions of power, those I felt could never relate to me, or those I felt were superior to me. Ever since then I’ve felt awkward around these people, never being fully aware as to why. Now I know why. I think this stems from being taught as a young girl to respect my teachers, my elders, and the like. I think it also comes from an insecurity that developed from being told who I was wasn’t good enough. Don’t be yourself, be who we want you to be; agreeable, responsive, and far from a pain in the ass.
Once I realized my habit of censoring my personality around some people, I was also able to notice another reaction. I could link my disingenuousness with a physical response that I can only describe as a feeling of contraction. That awkward sensation where your muscles tense and your brain ceases to function properly. You can’t seem to figure out what to say because you’re filtering everything that comes to mind. Every move and comment and gesture is choreographed and second-guessed.
As of right now
Going forward, I vow to be myself no matter with whom I’m interacting. God save you all. Someone doesn’t like me? Oh well. Take the vow with me. Do you. Say what’s on your mind. Be kind, but be honest. Speak up for yourself. Speak up for others. Never compromise your values. Say the things that come to your mind. Say the stuff you’re afraid to say. Let your true personality show.
My wish for you on this International Woman’s Day is to take off your armor. To all the little Wonder Women out there, no matter your age, I hope you find the courage to be yourself so you can live genuinely. Wouldn’t hurt to carry a lasso either, but only if it feels right.
It takes a lot less effort to be you, so be you.