Thursday, September 1, 2011

Raw Ode to an Internet Advertisement

Don't read this is if you're not ready for honesty that will probably make you uncomfortable.

I see the curves, the shades, the skin of her body, and I die a little inside.
Some days, I sit naked in front of my mirror for almost an hour, turning this way and that to see how the light catches my silhouette, to reward myself with pride and attention for a good day, or more likely, to criticize my inconsistencies compared to her- to them- to what is desirable. My eyes bore into every scar, every hill, every valley of my frame and I wonder why it is that God didn't grace mankind with more graphic visibility for our emotional pain. I would like to believe that if every time a man's eyes bore into her body, a knife wound bore into mine- the way it feels it does- he would not, could not help but restrain. So many minds I can't understand.
My own, a lot of the time.
And men, so organically wired to feed visually off of stimuli, an impulse I cannot identify with.
And "hers." It keeps me awake at night, wondering how she can do this to us, her fellow women, when all we want is to be able to share a love and a heart with someone we believe will value them. How she can do this to the woman who has pledged to give herself wholly to a lifelong commitment of marriage she's been working through for over a decade, maybe longer? How can she do this to a generation of girls growing up in a world that convinces them that the best way to assert their femininity is to lord their bodies over men with sex and sensuality.
I have to wonder. Did she grow up insecure, too? Did her mirror reflect her face, or her silhouette? Does she know the pain of losing sleep knowing that somewhere, someone she loves or has loved or will love is choosing something else, someone else?
Surely she knows- I can use no excuse for a "different brain setup." We are women. We draw the parallels.
I try to believe in a greater purpose- a family to feed, a financial crisis that enslaves her to a cruel debt, an accidental photo shoot? I want nothing more than to hear an excuse so I can forgive us all, and ignore my own guilt, ignore the fact that as a woman I can trace the breadcrumbs of her mentality. Because even on my best days, I too am wired to seek out others to make them enjoy something I have to offer. I work for the approval of at least one guy I meet at random every day, maybe every hour. And most if not all days, I give little to no thought as to who that guy might be, and the fact that he may have circumstances in his life- commitments, struggles, someone special. Things that if I knew about, or even just thought about, would keep me from ever trying to charm him.
Lord have mercy on me for the way I become "her" nearly every day. All I want is the motivation to keep myself and others pure until my dying day. In the meantime, I wouldn't mind any reassurance that I'm not just spinning my wheels in a time and age where purity seems as though it is hardly maintainable and rarely desirable.

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