Most of my life I was quietly ashamed of being too pretty.
When I was twelve years old I was chased by a mob of kids who were following their ring leader. She had decided she was going to cut my face with a broken beer bottle because I was “too pretty”, at a neighbourhood party.
If it wasn’t for my best friend at the time who rushed me out of the community centre on her bike, I don’t know what would have happened.
So today I look back at how I kept myself hidden after that.
How I held myself back.
How I felt that being pretty was disrespectful to others.
That I made others feel uncomfortable.
I thank my friends for teaching me how to defend myself in those days, my brothers for being brutally honest with me in regards to how men see women (which inspired my Tomboy ways).
And I thank all of my male friends who always kept it real with me.
To all of the tragically insecure people who projected and continue to project their self-hatred at me: I feel for you. It’s a damn shame that you don’t love yourself enough to accept the real beauty that shines from within. To know the power you hold as a person, to know your wealth and what you truly have to offer yourself.
I wish for everyone to look yourself in the mirror so you can learn to accept ALL of yourself. Because it isn’t until you accept yourself, that you can better yourself. So you can stop projecting your hatred outwards.
In hindsight, I count it as a blessing that I kept myself hidden.
Because now I am a woman. Not a little girl trying to be a woman, not a girl playing dress up in heels acting like I’ve got it figured out. Not a girl running around half-naked looking for attention. This is all mine. I love my body and my beauty. I work hard for it. I treat my body like the beautiful delicate plant she is. I do not indulge. I am disciplined. I am gentle.
And most of all, I’m very conscious of who I share myself and my energy with.
I’ve been through the fire, and back many times and have come out stronger every time.
So I celebrate me.
And anyone who is into celebrating themselves in a real way.
I don’t turn up for anything but love.
And that’s just real.