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Imperfect Me

November 6, 2017 ·

 Wishing peace on everyone, including myself. It is peace that eludes me and I realized that as human beings we find ourselves seeking peace and are ironically destined to be eluded by it for the most part of our lives. My present restlessness is the mundane yet prevalent dissatisfaction with my physical self. I have these lofty thoughts and aspirations of transcending my baser instincts and serving humanity and yet this one is the most resilient of my vices. I have by the Grace of God managed to push past the many hindrances in the quagmire of my mind, but this loathing of my physical self is something that not even my experiences at Turning Point, Joyspring or the Mile have put to rest. There is countless evidence of the negative stereotyping that the West has bombarded us with through the likes of popular media, depicting woman as stick thin waifs with size 32 bodies and perfectly sculpted faces. The stick thin bodies have given way to curvier, fuller Kardashian type forms with more sexual overtones and unforgiving raunchiness. Personally, I have always favoured the waifish form, which is unsurprisingly furthest from my own rather strong athletic and almost boyish broad shoulders, narrow hips and rather unfitting larger feminine appendages. Not a popular shape in any culture- lol. That, coupled with what I have been told is a very pretty face, but in my own view, rather big and full, I have suffered with poor self-image even when I was younger, prettier and thinner than I am now. My misgivings of course, have little to do with other people’s opinion of me and everything to do with my opinion of myself. I am angry because I allowed someone else’s view of beauty to influence me and measured myself against unrealistic stereotypes. I am angry because I am a slave to the unsavoury whiles of physical perfection. The search for physical perfection is an insidious toxin that poisons the minds and self-worth of women. I can bet that even the most beautiful women on the planet suffer some sort of insecurity about being imperfect. I recall reading an article about Charlize Theron many years ago, in which she admitted that there are days when she feels fat and unattractive. Charlize Theron! Queen of Hollywood glamour and ultimate feminine beauty. What is it that makes us obsessive about the way we look? I qualify the ‘us’ with ‘some of us’ because I am in awe of those women who have successfully defeated that demon of desirability. I question whether it is a desirability for male attention. In some cases, this may certainly be true. Very often though, it is the desire to compare with other women. To be as good or better than one’s peers. Is it not even more basic than that? Everyone loves to be admired. It feels good when someone says you look great! You’re so pretty. We grew up being pleased as little girls when we had our best dresses on and were told by everyone how pretty we looked. So much so, that it eventually becomes the measure for validation and worse yet, self-worth. Let’s face it, the world loves good looking people. We all want that advantage. Although I detested being objectified growing up and was more insulted by comments about my sexiness and my legs on the netball court (which I thought were horrendously muscular, yet the boys loved them – go figure!), I still enjoyed the compliments about being good looking. The problem is, whether I believed it or not, I needed to feel pretty and gorgeous. The world loved pretty and gorgeous. If I did not feel those things, then I was not good enough. This subtle toxin permeated even the most rational parts of my brain and sunk deep into my consciousness. I am still struggling to shed the incredible burden it has placed on my existence. I cannot bear to look at pictures of myself. As dissatisfied as I am with my physicality, my distaste of the horrendous image of me cast in photographic images far exceeds my unhappiness in front of a mirror. Alas, as penance for my vanity and fear I am cursed with being one of the least photogenic people on the planet. On the odd occasion that I do photograph well, you will find those pictures on my social media profiles. Yes, I am ashamed. Yes, I seek to be rid myself of this burden and to accept myself. I am aging and one day I will be looking like a grandma and that is how life is. I would love to release myself unto the process without fear. I continue to strive. One thing is for sure. None of this silliness can hamper my life purpose. However, to maximize my service to humanity, I must fight my own demons. May God guide us all to rectitude. Thank you for sharing in my journey. With love and humility. Radia💙