At 16, I was quite confident that in a few years, I will have mastered the art of loving myself, prioritising myself and my choices, and being able to shut out anything that puts me down. But, as I grow older, I only realise that it’s a never-ending process ー finding that balance between my mind and body.
It’s tough to accept and say out loud that I have let people make me feel disgusted by my body hair (my NORMAL body hair). That I still can’t get myself to step out in a dress until I have shaved or waxed my legs. And that sometimes, I even worry that my pimple makes me look ugly to a point where it ruins my mood a little. And, the only thing that has changed in the last few years is that along with these thoughts, there’s one more.
“Why am I allowing these things to affect me? Shouldn’t I make such choices because I want to and not for someone else?”
And I believe that the growth lies here. The important part of my journey isn’t to completely achieve this, but it is to be able to question it first.
From body hair to what I look like, I have at some point given into the unrealistic standards set by people I don’t even know of. On so many days, the painful part is to watch my mind fight between: “I feel good physically, and that’s enough.” and “I have to do more than just feel good, I have to look good.” And, even when I do convince myself that my personal parameters are all that matter, there’s always something out there to make me feel like I’m not doing enough.
And now, if you’re wondering where’s the growth in my journey and what the “pride” point is, then I really do have one for you. After all of these mind battles, I’ve begun (begun, not achieved) to find a balance between loving myself and working towards altering parts I don’t like but ON MY TERMS. This beginning, this realisation is the highlight of my journey.
As we come together through #PaintoPride, I only wish to say one thing. Our insecurities might never leave, but we’ll definitely learn to throw them in some corner as we grow to understand that it’s our choice and our life. And now, I’ll go back to shaving (or not) only because I WISH TO.
This is my #PaintoPride story, what’s yours?
The Blog is written by Chandni Menda.