For the longest time, I was always told who to be, how to talk, how to act and how to think… for the longest time I only knew who I am from what people told me “Stop smiling too much” “Don’t talk to these people” “Don’t wear this, it shows that you’re BOLD” For the longest time I had these perceptions about what being a woman is, and I was Miss Goody Two Shoes. Without exposing too much about my life and my childhood, I can tell you that I know what it’s like to feel lost without others reassurance, without being told which path to take, which direction to go and how to feel about certain things.. I thought I had no choice but to be this person, because being anyone else or revealing the true side of me that I wanted to explore is somehow wrong..
I was made to believe that I HAVE TO fit in, and I wanted to fit in. I wanted to feel accepted and loved, like most of us. Back in school [yes, here comes the cliche part] I was always an outcast, the weirdo, to the point that I was bullied for simply saying certain things and I was bullied when I tried to fit in and I was mistreated. People used to talk about me all the time and I saw it, even when it was happening behind my back. I knew they laughed at me when it came to sports, or practicing any creative talent like art. The way they talked to me, treated me and laughed at me made me feel like an outsider. And if I’m being honest, I was desperate to be loved and accepted, so I just stayed in whatever so-called “friendships” I had, because being an outsider made me feel inadequate. A couple of years later, I stopped being friends with them and decided to sit alone. Why? I felt alone when I was with them and I was sick and tired of trying to fit in and try to be funny because I thought that would somehow ‘impress’ them… I gave people SO MUCH power and control over me that I lost myself in the process.
After that, I thought for the first time I made a real friend. Then she betrayed me in a way that broke me and my confidence, YET again. My relationship with the man I loved the most fell apart… I didn’t know how to survive without him because I got used to getting a text or a call almost daily.. Because I let HIM define for me what love is.. I didn’t know how to wake up without the usual ‘Good Morning’ text and I REFUSED to accept love from anyone else, because with him, I thought that it’s the one of a kind love, and it probably was, but our moments passed and it became very unhealthy which I recognised YEARS later. I still hated myself and I thought my confidence and happiness were somehow dictated by him. So, how did I find myself? How did I develop this personal power and become so incredibly invincible?
I decided to stay single for a while, almost 2-3 years because I didn’t know who I am outside these people. I didn’t really know what makes me happy other than “him.” So I took a few steps back and just started looking at the world with an open mind. I set my own rules as to what is right and what is wrong, and what is in between. I asked myself what is love? what is the kind of love that I want? And I told myself “Answer these questions clearly and honestly, because no one will be able to answer them for you. ‘HIM‘ is not good enough of an answer.” As I have seen a lot from this world at a very young age, I matured and grew up quickly. I realised that I put my happiness and self-esteem in other people’s hands, which is unfair to them and to myself. My happiness is my DECISION and it is MY responsibility.
So what did I do? I was struggling that time deeply with depression, low self-esteem and anxiety. I had suicidal and self-harming thoughts that were very much deeply disturbing. It was a very difficult phase (as in years) of my life because I hd to pretend I’m okay with my family and then fall apart when everyone sleeps and they never found out I was severely depressed and suicidal..
Anyway, I started to focus on myself in every aspect, because if I can’t be happy with me, how can I be happy with anyone else? How can I not bring my insecurities to the next friendships and relationships? I decided to discover myself a bit more by going out and meeting different people from various background to identify what types of people do I want to be around? Which characters and personalities do I feel like I can feel safe and comfortable around? I didn’t just focus on myself socially, I focused on every aspect of my life- My mental health, my physical health, my body, my social life and my spirituality. I started reading empowering articles, watching videos about different aspects of my life that I wanted to be in control of and read about the law of attraction and how to reprogram my subconscious mind (that’s a whole other blog).
After educating myself in different aspects and areas of life, I started to set my own boundaries and rules. All these steps helped me develop my confidence and self-love. I chose to define my own self-worth and I understood that I had to set standards in order to be able to identify the types of people I want to keep in my life and the ones that I should definitely eliminate. The process of finding myself is how I also discovered my quirks, embraced them and loved them till this day… You DON’T have to JUST settle. You don’t have to be “yessy”.. Now I understand that this seems like a ‘rebellious’ phase and people usually look down on ‘rebellious’ people, I assure you, it is NOT a phase, I found myself and my identity based on what I have experienced and felt, based on all the different paths I walked through. I didn’t JUST follow what society and culture says, because I am my own WOMAN! I have a voice, so why the heck wouldn’t you use it?! USE YOUR VOICE AND LIVE IN YOUR SHINE!
Listen, I don’t want you to think that I am living in La La Land and all of my life problems have vanished. Even though I have accepted my body, there are parts of it that I am still insecure about, I still have social anxiety, body dysmorphia, and minor physical issues (PCOS/IBS). On the other hand, I have also battled through severe depression and general anxiety. I CHOSE to be assertive and use the voice that I have been blessed to have. I CHOSE to be tenacious till I got the job that I want where I want. I chose to not hurt as much or grieve as much when someone leaves, or when I leave them. So who am I? I am the most amazing person in MY world, someone beautiful, smart, down to earth, goofy, funny and inspirational. I am someone who makes me laugh like no other and I genuinely enjoy spending my time alone in tranquility and comfort. I am a strong and independent feminist who believes in her power and ability go above and beyond. And I love that person with every fibre of my being, and believe it or not? NO ONE can take that away from me. I put on a crown and remind people of who they’re dealing with!
P.S.: Remember that there is a fine line between confidence and arrogance or narcassism. Establish the difference and set your limits. Please contact me if you ever need anyone to talk to. And remember, not being okay is okay! If you want to seek professional help, there is ABSOLUTELY no shame in that. Mental health is as important as physical health.
P.S.#2 (yes that’s a thing now 🤓): You can’t tell me how to be a woman 💋
Also, watch this ONE MINUTE instagram video uploaded by Expired N Fabulous