I remember growing up having an enormous appetite that my parents used to commend and me being a mommy’s and daddy’s girl, eat I did. After class 8 I had this, should I call it cute? No, I won’t brand it anything as that never crossed my mind. I had this belly and I recall vividly that after meals I’d be so full that the only thing I did afterwards was sleep. I’ve always been useless after meals, especially supper. This perhaps explains why I stopped taking a heavy supper since I have to stay up and function as an adult. So many things to be done.
I had this cute long sleeved white, warm, night dress that had cute little pink flowers all over it and whenever I would wear it to bed, my tummy would stretch it out and no, it never even crossed my mind one bit. Imagine my shock when I grew up(after high school) and started hearing phrases like:
no, tuck you tummy in honey.
With that tummy you shouldn’t buy a body con dress.
Oh no, I’m planning to start hitting the gym, nimenona aki! (I’ve grown fat). Says the lean bodied lady.
Where did we lose it? Is it the magazines? Social media?
The thing with cameras is you can always position them at a certain angle to bring out your best features. So you tuck that tummy in a little, you pop the butt backwards, smile and voilâ, your end product is a goddess (which you already are without all the posing by the way). When you scroll your social media and see your friends all poised and sharp, you start hating on yourself.
Why do my things rub against each other? I want a thigh gap like her.
Why do I have to sweat so much after walking a short distance? She doesn’t.
She’s doing well. I’m not.
Stop. Stop. Stop.
Stop comparing yourself with others. We all grow at different paces and no, there’s no perfect women. By virtue that you’re female, you have the estrogen hormone in your body that is responsible for your feminine features. Trevor Noah, in one of his stand-up comedies said that black is about size and shape. That with a black woman, you can gently slap the right butt cheek and wait for the wave to hit your hand on the left butt cheek hehe. So why are you trying so hard to strip yourself of what makes you you? Your femininity. It’s your biggest strength. Joan Thatiah in her book, Things I will tell my daughter, elucidates that we live in a society where everyone else, who has no experience whatsoever in being a woman, takes it upon themselves to tell you how you should live your life.
Be yourself. No, not like that.
You shouldn’t speak like that, ladies don’t do that.
You should smile more often, it’s unladylike to frown a lot.
I say, tell them to buy a journal and write their opinions in it!
Be you. The world will adjust.
Love your body. If you want to be better a version of yourself, hit that gym, start the morning runs but do not do it because someone body shamed you.