Girls should be seen, not heard – Part 4

This piece is inspired by the powerhouse Jessie J and her breathtaking song “Queen”

I love my body

Every curve, every scar

The ripples of my skin along my thighs

A rugged work of art

The slope of my nose, the size of my cheeks; all four of them

Every jiggle with every step

The motion, almost poetic

A song by itself singing what you see isn’t all you get

I love my skin

It’s the armor of my soul

The package that all good things come in

When it’s young, it’s beautiful

And like fine wine, magnificent when it gets old

The bruises make for contrast

A canvas is what it is

What some might interpret as a flaw

Just know, there’s no error on this painting

I am a goddess

A timeless creation

A power and a force surging through the bones of a woman strong and beautiful from deep within

I stand against hurricanes with my roots firmly grounded

I’ve defeated lions and cowards and legions of opponents that surrounded

I am a queen

I may not rule the seven seas

But opposition fears the very thought of challenging me

I have royalty flowing through my veins; the sovereignty that exists in every woman

For I am a warrior, a provider, a caretaker, a fighter, a voice for the silent and a face for the shy

A pioneer, a groundbreaker, a lover and a soldier; a peacemaker and a survivor

I am a mother, a daughter, a sister and a guide; your greatest companion and your dearest friend

I am a woman

A force with which to be reckoned

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Imperfect

I have a tendency

When I cross my hands behind my back to tuck my thumbs in so those standing behind me won’t see them

I do it automatically

Without thinking, I’ve trained my mind to act without instruction

To wear my hair out when I pose for a photograph

And if I put my hair up, leave the sides loose to cut my ears in half

I wear my glasses if I don’t pluck my eyebrows on time

And rewatch every picture I’ve ever taken and scrutinize

I’ve developed a routine

Where my eyes narrow out every single flaw that I’ve been told I have and see only that

It’s beyond me

I didn’t see these things on my own but after years from past straight to today of being told to hide this and that

I do it without question

And find it without intention

I would shake my head at my reflection and say “it isn’t that important”

I repeat it to myself over and over that you can’t fix every imperfection

That the definition of perfection is a social construct; it changes everywhere you go

What one person labels ugly, another finds it a masterpiece

And neither opinions are important if at the core of it all you’re happy

But I still have a compulsion

To only take pictures from a certain angle

An obsession

That leaves me feeling less than alluring the moment I spot something that someone else would dictate as unappealing

A self awareness that becomes animated when someone asks “why didn’t you fix your hair”

A complete destruction of my self confidence that becomes shattered when I thought I was putting my best foot out to be criticized for being less than average

It’s a never ending cycle, a consistent battle between what I hear and what I know

I wish there was a way to tune out the noise

If my strength could just be solely rooted in the thoughts recurring in my mind from the internal voice of my conscience

And not from the words that trickle through my ears, polluting my views with fickle nonsense

Then I could find complete contentment

In all of my imperfections

Girls should be seen, not heard – Part 3

I do not conform to an “ideal” body image

All bodies are beautiful and I wish we, as a people, would realise that by idealizing one over the other would only result in more hurt

Whether it’s fat, thin, curvy or slim

There will be thousands of girls who just wouldn’t fit in

And they will try whatever they can, regardless of the price it costs, the health that would be lost just so they could have “the look”

You push girls to be skinny and someone will develop anorexia or bulimia

Would push their bodies to extreme limits of starvation

To still not get the abs, or the thigh gap

You highlight curves and you will find girls becoming obese, eating everything in sight

Desperate to gain that extra fat on the legs or the butt because drinking protein and doing leg workouts 7 days a week isn’t working fast enough

I know. “That’s not your fault. You can’t control the ones who go to the extreme”

But you can

You keep defining beauty by one fixed picture but one thing you keep forgetting to take into consideration

We are all majestic creatures uniquely designed and there’s no way your one picture is going to have full inclusion

You pin us against each other and it doesn’t matter who has the lead

We’re still fighting the same war; SHE against SHE

I have heard skinny girls bash bigger girls because of how they look in that dress and thick girls bash skinny girls for bodies that aren’t “realistic”

Stop stop STOP STOP

Stop criticizing each other into an early grave

You’re just jumping from image to image

It’s never going to work

Go to the gym, do yoga, run, dance, eat clean, get enough sleep, take care of yourself and whatever “body image” comes out of that

THAT is the ideal body! Skinny, thick, no matter what it is

What’s the point of killing yourself to attain society’s image of perfect if you’re not going to live long enough to enjoy it

Your body, every shape and form, is the “realistic” body type

Don’t kill yourself, kill the hype

And every idea that tries to materialize beauty

A house built on a good foundation will stand, so stop worrying so much about the paint

You can put how many coats of paint you want, it’ll mean nothing if you’ve got a weak structure

Every single girl and woman out there is beautiful and that is not determined by the models on the runway or the celebrities on the magazines

Take care of yourself and not for any image but because you deserve it. You deserve to live a long, healthy, fully satisfying life

Every single one of you is a different star in the sky, so shine your own light

Scars

Scars from the past are unforgettable

People might forget they’re even there;

They might see it but not remember how you got it

But you do

You remember every scar, every story, every ounce of blood, every stitch

Every second leading up to the moment you got it

And every moment you waited for it to heal

And even if you cover the scar up, that’s one thing that’ll never fade

And that may not be a bad thing

Own your scars, they’re your unique signature

May be messy, may be imperfect but they’re beautiful marks of strength and power

-Behind A Simple Face

Girls should be seen, not heard – Part 2

I don’t remember a time when I trusted someone

Every boy had the potential to hurt me, every friend was just trying to use me

I knew it wasn’t true and I have people who I trust now

But there are days when all logic is tossed out and I just sit waiting for betrayal

I could tell you it was because of things that happened in the past that made me fear any person, boy or girl

But when I say that or even think it, I tell myself I’m just making excuses

I feel weak for being a victim of my past and I know it sounds ridiculous

I feel as though it’s inexcusable to still feel hurt and pain and hold on to something that happened long before I had proper memory

It’s not justifiable to lash out, to project any anger, irritation, frustration that stems from years of pain because I’m grown now

I’m grown and I should have a little maturity

I feel as though no one would understand if I spoke up or they’d think I’m being petty,

Unreasonable; that I’m exaggerating because they don’t know what it’s like or because everyone has it worse

Or because someone has been through the same thing and they’re alright now so why am I still kicking a fuss

I’ve never spoken about it, only to a select few

Two of the people even told me it was my own fault and somehow I believed them

For some time, I honestly thought I wasn’t a “victim”

Because it was my own doing…

Now, I only speak about it to one

But even when I do, I can feel it being overdone

Even if no one tells me that I don’t have any right to feel this way

I do

I tell myself I shouldn’t feel this way

I tell myself I’m exaggerating and holding on to something that isn’t really a big deal anyway

I tell myself to just move on and forget it already

I tell myself I’m prolonging it as though I’m asking for pity

I tell myself that it’s a tired old story and I should just put it to rest

I tell myself to just shut up and stay silent

Girls should be seen, not heard- Part 1

She stays silent when her thoughts are racing

A trick she’s developed over the years

When she was told that her words were valueless and her thoughts even cheaper

She lurks in the darkness and the shadows cast by the bright places

Careful not to make a sound

Because no one wanted to hear her when she had so much to say, so she kept it to herself; it was much safer

She battles with her own emotions, unable to comprehend them and even less able to express them

She doesn’t know how

She hushed her voice so many times that even she can’t hear herself anymore

She cries without tears and shakes without vibration; actions when others saw them assumed she had lost all compassion

They could never understand

She had her lips sealed tight, every thought created, every emotion generated trapped behind a steel door