She walked into the room, confident in her simplicity. Their eyes followed every crevice, from her smile to her curves. As I silently followed the gravity of their gaze, I noticed a sudden change in the energy of the room. As a collective "we", our hands tugged at our clothes, we shifted in our seats, and our chests rose higher as a reminder of our pre-existent femininity and sexual appeal. With the brightness of her beauty, we could no longer see ourselves.
Beneath the rawness of my self consciousness and an essence of jealousy, I myself thought she was beautiful, but I didn’t think I was allowed to. Society had trained me to bypass all that was right and look for any hanging truth about her that would give me permission to as we like to call it…”hate on her”.
In that moment we all exchanged glances at each other, rolling our eyes at the attention she had grabbed from the men that we clung to desperately for self assurance. In a little part of our minds, we blamed the men for paying too much attention to another woman’s beauty. In that same crevice between self love and jealously we birthed a hormonal reaction. We no longer felt good enough.
Now this probably happened to you last night at the club, or this is going to happen to you this afternoon at your friends wedding. But lets stop for a second and ask ourselves a few questions?
What happened to us? When did we stop lifting each other up? When did we stop realizing that each one of us together make a unified sense of beauty? When did we start to measure someones worthiness of beauty by the flawlessness of her contour, or the realness of her hair? And more importantly when did we give up the ability to admire a woman without perceiving her through a lens of her ability to steal “our” man?
Oh but wait, when did our "save face" attempt at realness result in us double tapping on our “competition’s” self exhibition, while crossing our fingers behind our backs and reserving our backhanded comments for a kiki later with the girls?
Don’t get me wrong, I have been that girl. I write this because I may still be that girl, but I don’t want to be that girl. I don’t want what makes someone great, be what makes me feel any less about my God given greatness. Sigh.
It took me so long to write about this side of me, because the truth is, for the first time I didn’t have a perfectly worded, quotable solution. I wasn't even confident that It was possible to be a woman without measuring my self worth by the flaws of those around me.
So I did something simple.
I pulled together the girls that society said were prettier, taller and skinnier than me. I asked them to come and shoot with me because I wanted to prove that there was room for all of us to shine. I wanted to prove that it isn’t always a competition. I pulled my sisters together, in a final attempt to prove that in all things even, we still had the ability to be beautiful together while being beautiful apart.
I wanted to do it because it shouldn’t feel wrong for a group of girls to get together and forget about keeping a tally on who racked up the most compliments. I wanted to prove that it was normal for women to lift each other up again.
At the end of the day, while I still cannot tell you how to hold your own, or search for the words to make you feel better about yourself… I can tell you this.
There are enough queens, and enough crowns.
So the next time a woman walks into a room, that a man makes you feel is better, prettier, skinnier, or curvier than you...take back the power and be the one to make her feel like the queen she is. Tell yourself, I can't knock down her crown, when Im trying to keep on mine.
Body Positive fashion and lifestyle blogger.