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The "Empressive" Woman

The "Empressive" woman is royalty. She unapologetically owns and walks in her truth yet is humble enough to embrace her flaws. She leaves an everlasting mark wherever she goes. She is not simply "a look", she's an essence.

Growing Up Ugly

(click the title twice to leave a comment to the question below) 

Me done know nuff people ah roll dem eyes lol, “b**** please, you just want attention, you know you were never ugly”. 

I’m asked a plethora of questions. One, “How do you have so much confidence?” (a classmate nervously came to me for advice on giving presentations, according to her, I shined in front of a classroom, I told her “picture everyone naked” lol, she lightened up). Two, “I wish I were beautiful like you, but I’m not and I feel worthless”. My response is always “Don't be beautiful like me, Be beautiful like YOU” 

Let’s rewind.

I was always a cute child; piercing eyes, thick hair, with the silkiest dark skin. Everyone felt that way, and so I felt that way too. I was definitely “di boys dem sugar", even at 10 years old, I felt confident. (In retrospect, insecurity was burgeoning; my grandma recalled a time that I came home crying because my breasts were small in comparison to other girls). Then, it happened, I came to America, and realized I was ugly nuh f*** lol. Many of us went through an awkward phase and grew out of it. I am 27, I’m still growing out of it. I was tall, skinny, with pimples, and it didn’t help that I was teased for having a thick accent/dialect (I tried to lose my accent so many times). I didn’t have fancy clothes, and my west indian mudda, even though she could afford it, didn’t buy me any pink Jordan to “gallavant ah merica” (roam america), but she always pushed education (thank you Queen). Being bullied was something I knew too well.

 

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High school was a bit better. I had beautiful friends (my besty at the time won prom queen/prettiest girl) but I never felt pretty. I met my first love, this handsome Jamaican rude boy, and I couldn't believe that he liked me. I felt like a million dollars, but still so insecure. I never had problems with my skin color (I was a dark version of my mom & loved it). I had issues with my weight, height and face. It was so pathetic that I would wear extra tights under my high water jeans in the high heart of summer to appear thicker. I was the tallest one of my friends, so I never wore heals and always bent my knees in pictures. My gait and posture was worst. I walked with my hands folded, my head to the floor, my mom would say “pick up yuh head”. My face? Let’s not start with that botheration. My grandmother came from St. Vincent one year, and I broke down. I was contemplating surgery. Yup, I had researched it, brainstormed ways to get surgery using my insurance (I was about 19). She pulled me aside and said “So you ah say God mek mistake pan yo, you ah insult God?” 

 My insecurities were so complex that’s its hard to encapsulate. It manifested in the ways I treated other women and men. When you’re insecure about yourself, you live in an incessant state of comparison. You make yourself feel good, by shading other women. You feel threatened in the presence of “gorgeous women”. I never realized this until I grew more into my journey and I met my current king (he’s a healer and made me face my demons).

When I say I grew up ugly, I'm speaking about internally. Here’s the thing, it didn’t matter who told me I was beautiful, a lot of people did. In fact, I don’t recall anyone blatantly saying I was “ugly”, but that didn’t matter, because I thought I did. You can seek out all the validation you want, but the ONLY opinion that matters is YOURS. How do you feel about you? Think about it, physical beauty is subjective. What’s “beautiful” to one person isn’t to another. So how do we measure and define it? Whose opinion counts? clearly ONLY yours. Another good news, beauty is not an accomplishment. I say beauty in the sense of what people consider beauty (again there is no one characteristics that makes one beautiful) Your physical appearance, is a GENETIC DEFAULT, it’s not something you can help. Fortunately, there are other things that are beautiful about you. In a sense, these other qualities helped me through life; my personality, light, humor, brains, my ability to listen, to make others feel happy. I never realized how beautiful I was. Those qualities will live on even when I wrinkle. They will live on in my grandchildren and their grandchildren even when I’m gone. What’s beautiful isn’t tangible. It’s a feeling, it’s an experience. I’m not 100% there as yet, I still have insecure moments, but overall? I walk with my head high higher, I praise other women much more, and I rock the taller heels……Most importantly, I bring my truth; a hot mess with empressiveness… I just arrive.....

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