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Inspirational, Self Image


“i am mine.
before i am ever anyone else’s.”
― Nayyirah Waheed

wp-1464624874342.jpgMine” – tattooed on my right wrist is this declaration. I see it with every action my dominant hand takes. The meaning is lost on so many who see it. “Why would you need to remind yourself of something so basic.” – they ask, with the heavy condescension that I am not yet immune to. Trying to explain myself seems futile. How can they understand that I never felt like mine for so long. I longed to be “his” “yours” “theirs” I was forever giving myself away that I forgot to be mine. The desecration of this temple went like this.

There was Mr Grey. The first person to pay attention to me was granted access to my heart even when he openly declared that the next one wouldn’t love me either so there was no difference. I failed to see that I was always capable of the thing they couldn’t give me.

Then there was Mr Black. He was the personification of my self hate. He called me bitch and pulled my hair even when he never fucked me. He was the least deserving of my being but he was a reflection of how much I could hate myself.

And to my rescue was Mr Green. He was the most like me, so it came as no surprise when I discovered that he too, was lacking in self love. We were on the same journey but we couldn’t take it together. Good intentions weren’t enough to save us from ruining each other.

The direct opposite of Mr Green was Mr Red. He was an embodiment of the world. All I sought to be was a version that would impress him. But I always fell short of this standard. He felt better about himself by putting me down and yet I still believed he was capable of more.

Mr Brown was supposed to be the one. But that one expectation created a million more. People aren’t supposed to be what we expect of them and vice versa. I was too busy trying to mold him that I forgot to mold myself.

And now, there is me! Plato said “At the touch of love everyone becomes a poet.” What he left out was this, with the loss of love, everyone finds a divine entity. Finding yourself after this loss, is that divine entity.

I remain a goddess even when no man worships at my altar.


The New Year Blog Entry!

“When you find yourself drowning in self-hate, you have to remind yourself that you weren’t born feeling this way. That at some point in your journey, some person or experience sent you the message that there was something wrong with who you are, and you internalized those messages and took them on as your truth. But that hate isn’t yours to carry, and those judgments aren’t about you. And in the same way that you learned to think badly of yourself, you can learn to think new, self-loving and accepting thoughts. You can learn to challenge those beliefs, take away their power, and reclaim your own. It won’t be easy, and it won’t happen over night. But it is possible. And it starts when you decide that there has to be more to life than this pain you feel. It starts when you decide that you deserve to discover it.”
                          —      Daniell Koepke


It is the dawn of a new year and I am not immune to the optimistic notion that the year holds infinite possibilities. But none of these compare to the inferred clarity born from retrospection. Putting another
year behind me helps me see some things clearer. I am compelled to leave the darkness and be one with the light. I couldn’t wait for the New Year to be a new person. I woke up one morning in December and I couldn’t be this person that the world had chosen for me. As such, I have developed a strong aversion
to secrecy. The popular misconception that we all adhere to is this: “to reveal one’s self is to become weak.” Must we live in fear? Must we be condemned to a life of fearing ourselves? Secrecy inadvertently gives birth to mistruth. I have spent years choking on declarations of love. My throat is hoarse with regret and my tongue has forgotten the taste of truth. I have a duty to infuse truth within the words I write to create the revolution that our society needs. The truth I offer you is this, whenever we reveal a modicum of truth, it is drowned in ignorance and hate. When I find comfort within this vessel that is my body, I am labeled vain. When my bra strap peeks out of my vest or my thick thighs pour out of my shorts, they say I am inviting sexual advances. Declarations of love are seen as efforts to emotionally blackmail. Kissing strangers that make me comfortable makes me a whore to them. Wearing make up must mean I am insecure with my appearance. Cries for help are seen as a cry for superficial attention. We fail to see the truth because we are searching for the worst in people.

I loved a man who taught me to love the truth through his inability to love me. His was a lesson that opened my eyes to the realisation that people cannot be the idea we have of them. To expect that is to defile the truth. Seek to understand my truth before you define me as your version of truth.


In Defence of Emotion.

I pledge allegiance to the heart hanging on my sleeve, swaying intrepidly amongst these cold waters. I lay my shattered mask of stoicism at the feet of those bothered my ability to feel and show every bit of it. I will feel everything in its entirety and I will be stronger for it. I am without shame, I am without regret.

I pledge allegiance to myself, the only person with permission to tell me what to feel. I permit myself to cry when I am faced with an excess of emotion. I permit myself to speak up when I am hurt by another’s actions or words. I permit myself to seek love within, always as a first resort.

I pledge allegiance to my mind, frozen in a perpetual battle with my heart. You will reign over me on some days, and it will be glorious, for I will feel these emotions and let them pass. I will not stew in self pity or anger. But most importantly, I will be no slave to my emotions. They serve my existence not vice versa. I will find the clarity to see manipulators for what they are and know when to leave people in the past. I will find understanding in the knowledge that I am different and I never have to change that.

“Something is always born of excess: great art was born of great terrors, great loneliness, great inhibitions, instabilities, and it always balances them.” – Anaïs Nin



fear of women began early. I was 7 when I learned that I would always be
compared to my sister. I was initiated to a twisted ideology that beauty could
not be appreciated without comparison. Your qualities had to be
“better” than another’s to be accepted. I’m still trying to figure out why I had to be forced to be a part of this “beauty contest” 16
years later and I have shuttered this Hall of mirrors. Seeing beauty in others
is seeing beauty in myself.

fear of men began with a metamorphosis. Shedding the naivety of childhood, we
are perceived as women from this change. Breasts and hips usher you into a
world of objectification. And this gave birth to a new shape of lies: That my
relevance to a man was defined by how attractive I would be. Imagine being 13
with barely any clue on how to exist in this new realm, only to be perplexed
further by the constant reminder that your breasts are not big enough, that
your hair is not long enough, that every fucking thing you have no control over
is not good enough. And then you get older and learn your relevance is tied to
your existence. But learning this isn’t enough. You must unlearn the lies you
were subjected to. And I wonder, do you ever unlearn anything. Because
regardless of all the knowledge and self realisation I have gathered to date, I
still feel an overwhelming feeling of inadequacy when a man tells me I’m not
slim enough to be his type.

fear of love began at 18. I kissed a boy and I wanted to kiss him forever. My
concept of love was tied to the fleeting and human idea of “forever”
and then it wasn’t anymore. I remember little about him but something in my
inner being says it wasn’t real. How else can I explain someone telling me I
was unloveable? And you remind yourself it isn’t true. But sometimes our fears
manifest into reality simply by giving them a forum in our minds. So it was
that the rest after him couldn’t love me. And I hoped it was because they were
not capable of it, but they went ahead and fell in love with others, never me.
I am yet to comprehend this twist of fate. There were others that carried the
cross of loving me but until I distance myself from my fear, I will never know
this love.

all the things I know, I can’t seem to trace the beginning of some fears. I
woke up one day and they were in bed next to me. I carry them around trying to
make sense of them. But sometimes there is no sense in fears such as fear of
your true self. So you hide from the world forgetting that it is the only
version of yourself that you can ever be at peace with.


“Human beings are not born once
and for all on the day their mothers give birth to them, but … life obliges
them over and over again to give birth to themselves.”
― Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez
At birth I was given gifts from my parents that I had no say in. I
came into this world with genetic predispositions. I have my mother’s smile and
my father’s dark skin. So it was no surprise at 7 when I asked my mother why I was
black and she wasn’t. She didn’t hesitate, she didn’t stutter, she simply
called me a “black beauty.” I came into this world with the skin tone that I absolutely
adore. But then again, I came into a world that took it upon itself to regret
this on my behalf. They always say to me, “If it only it had been reversed.” And
to that I always say, “Then I wouldn’t smile as much as I do, and I wouldn’t love
words the way he does.”
I want to be grateful for all compliments, but it’s hard to do
when people almost always single out my hair. They say, “hey at least you have your
mother’s hair.” So they cussed me out when I took to the scissor. They almost
never see that I have my mother’s feet and her hard to live with paranoia.
“Why him?” they casually ask, when I single out the boy that makes
me weak in the knees. They never see that they usually remind me of my father,
stoic with incredible talent and the ability to make me laugh till my sides
The truth is, although people always say these things to me, I never
say anything back, but I wish I had said all this before it fucked with my
head. Because it is okay to tell someone that you like your hair the way it is
and that extra weight does not change your degree of self love. I have known at
an early age that we won’t always be what the world expects us to be. But it
took me 23 years to learn not to let that trifle with me. (Totally didn’t intend
that to rhyme)

“If I didn’t define myself for
myself, I would be crunched into other people’s fantasies for me and eaten
– Audre Lorde