I find myself very beautiful. I'm happy to find my own face pleasing in the reflection But I'm always surprised when other people find me beautiful, because I don't expect them to see what I see. I expect them to use the measuring stick that society has provided: long hair (preferably blond), symmetrical features, perfect nose, perfect teeth, pouty mouth, big breasts, small waist, smooth limbs, perfect posture, graceful movement, and many other ideals that I have never seen reflected from my mirror. I'm quite aware that I fall short in every category, that I am not the definition that a random man means when he pictures a "beautiful woman." So I've never considered myself as a beautiful woman, though I, myself, have always taken pleasure in my beauty. I rarely wear makeup, and never much. I like how I look. I always smile when I meet my own eyes.
When someone else finds me beautiful, I am taken aback, as though they've caught me naked. They've seen me, when I didn't mean to be seen. They've recognized my beauty when I thought the cloaks and filters of social expectation had me shielded. I fear my beauty being recognized.
Humans have a strange relationship with beauty. They crave to set eyes on it, to feel it through senses, as a key component of happiness. Somehow, people start to feel owed the beauty around them as a way of filling other gaping holes, and that includes beautiful women. If I am a beautiful woman, people will want something from me that they otherwise would leave alone, if they found me plain. They will expect me to be ways that I am not, to comply with behaviour that I don't like, to play out the role they envision for me. All that expectation will clang loudly in my ears, drowning out my own voice, and I will become something ugly inside. That is my spin-story of what it means if I am a beautiful woman. That is the root of fear that gets triggered when someone notices what I know, and realizes I am beautiful.
I duck away shyly. I can barely meet their gaze. It's like they've found out my secret and I'm not sure I trust them to keep it.
Tuesday, December 5, 2017
getting tested past the edges is the only way to know where they are.
it's good it's bad it's up it's down
it's coming through for each other and letting each other down and blaming
ourselves and blaming each other always knowing
neither is fair
neither is true.
what's happening but loving
and needing to leave
but having to stay
until pressure breaks the seams
and I run home to lick my wounds