To be a woman is not to be free and equal, but caged and categorized into deeply worn gender molds, criticized for every inch, every millimeter of your skin.
To be a woman is to lose ourselves. When we are trapped inside the chrysalis of pink fabric and expectations. When the most beautiful things we tell ourselves are the echoes of married men’s cat calls. When the standard of beauty is based on how we are perceived – how are we to know how to feel? How are we to love ourselves when self-loathing dominates our make-up-crusted skin? How are we to douse ourselves with the last drops of hair dye and nail polish – not knowing if the color is right, not knowing if it increases our attractiveness, not knowing why we do it. How are manicured hands and perms supposed to be improvements when we don’t even have self-worth?
How are we to love another without society’s love? Why do we even need society’s love? We are shamed and judged – scarred and broken on the inside, masked with expensive perfumes and designer clothes. Rejection and bias shade in the bright eye shadow covering our tear soaked faces – water proof make up exists for sorrows.
We must fit the ideal image of a woman to be accepted. To be a woman is to succumb to the definition of woman - that unrealistic expectation of beauty, that standard we use to compare ourselves to others. Insecurities run deep because we think perfection is shown in magazines through engagement rings and kisses, through love and day dream – to be a woman is to feel unwanted.
We are blank canvassed hung out to dry like sopping wet laundry – tumbled and rinsed until we fit in. But our clothes cannot fit, they are tight and revealing to expose every flaw on our body. To be a woman is to fret over every curve and follow each one down the road of fat shaming. To be a woman is to trace stretch marks until you sketch a new woman.
To be a woman is to lose the inner princess, the inner warrior you felt as a child. To be a child is to be shielded from the harsh whip which keeps a figure in shape. To be a woman comes with prejudice and less pay. To be a woman is facing discrimination for your biology. To be a woman is to withstand expectations. To be a woman is to be strong and firm. To be a woman is not to conform but rise with hope and create change for a brighter tomorrow.
To be a woman is to endure.