So, I’ve had this idea fermenting in my mind, unsure of how to start so I’ll just lay it down here.
We all lie, everyday, everywhere, every time. It’s not always verbal but in many subtle ways. We are so full of deceit that we have begun to accept the lies as truth and carefully conceal it every time we have an audience (sometimes, even when we don’t). Some of these lies are socially polite and arguably necessary but the problem lies in when we do not know where the lies end and truth starts.
A lot of us have not stopped to give ourselves a long critical and honest look in years. We need to invest in a full length mirror and set out a day for self-reflection. Majority of us can no longer recognise ourselves because we haven’t looked in a long time.
Stand in front of the mirror, alone, stripped of a false accent, fake airs, face paint, artificial hairs, nails, your hijab, jewellery, flashy clothes, be nude if you want (but remember to secure your door). Take a good look at yourself. Take a good look, not to look for faults and blemishes. Take a thorough look at yourself and accept yourself.
Take a good look at the short or lanky stature, rolls of fat, stretch-marks, cellulite, hidden tattoos, uneven skin, dark-complexion, receding hairline, increasing paunch or six-pack, crooked teeth, squint, excessive body hair or lack of it, huge nose, hairy ears, flat-chest or saggy breasts, skinny legs, ugly toes.
Appraise yourself. Are you materialistic, not-religious, dependent on others, angry, arrogant, scared? Or you are frightened of the dark, heights, crowds, a broken heart, failure, not being accepted, poverty? Whatever you have a problem with, stare at it and stare hard. Think about what you want to do about it (if at all).
Then, analyse this: if you don’t accept yourself with your flaws, why should anyone else? It’s a very negative but comforting place to be, wrapped up in our inadequacies like it’s a security blanket. Clinging to our flaws can make us feel safe but diffident. And it holds us back from enjoying ourselves and our relationships. It is a fact that these insufficiencies prevent a woman from achieving orgasm because she is too worried about how she looks to enjoy the moment.
So, if you cannot bear what you see, try to fix it. If you cannot, live with it, accept it and embrace yourself. Allah has proportioned you wonderfully and blessed you immensely whether the world views it that way or not. Stop trying to live like others, be like others. Those perpetually happy Facebook posts and carefully-edited Instagram selfies are mostly lies too so stop comparing your life with theirs. No one is always happy and always so beautiful all of the time. That is not normal! Concealing yourself will only make it stranger to those who get to peek in. You may be surprised to realise that when you reveal yourself to the world, it will not cringe back in disgust but will accept you, ONLY if you have accepted yourself. You will bloom with new-found confidence and a beautiful aura.
So, go ahead and step out of your comfort zone and say, ‘Hi. I am ABCD.’ You will hear us chorus, ‘Hi, ABCD!’