This post was written by my close childhood friend Maya. Not only is Maya incredibly smart (she is about to begin an Arts/Law degree at Macquarie University) she is also one of the most generous, genuine women you will ever meet. I asked Maya if she would write an article for The Beauty Breakdown and she replied within the hour like the champion she is. This is what she wrote.
In this modern world of ours, where we celebrate the resting bitch face instead of an open heart, where we put people with plastic faces on blinking pedestals, and luridly worship the insipidity that is physical beauty- its apparent to me that we have lost something.
As a woman of today, in my own personal Western demographic, opportunities exist that have literally never been experienced by any other generation of females in history. Period. We are so lucky in my world, with unbridled access to education and to unlimited universal information. Yet, for so many of us, this isn’t enough.
‘Role Model’ is a term thrown around a lot these days. You see models use it all the time in interviews, earnestly clasping their fists and saying “I just really wanna be a good role model to young girls. when l was a little girl all I ever wanted to be was a supermodel”. Honestly, I am impressed with these women who are ambitious and driven, with concrete goals that they have achieved, yet it really does concern me how many young girls want so badly to be this, known for their outer world, instead of their inner one.
In history, there have been so many incredible women who have changed the world fundamentally, yet, as is sadly often the case, they tend to slip under the radar and are left, floundering and forgotten in the wash of history. It’s a real shame, because sometimes a gal wants to see another gal recognised whose greatest accomplishment isn’t just perfeeeectly applying magenta rose eye shadow in number 8. Perhaps, instead, someone who wrote literature so beautiful that its capable of making a heart stop in the healthiest way possible, or someone who explored, alone, the uncharted depths of the Amazon, or physically stood up to the Taliban. They are out there.
Let me introduce you to some of em’.
- Charlotte Bronte – This young woman is my absolute favourite writer of the moment. Her expert storytelling, her multi-layered poetry, her avant garde feminism are all things that make my heart sing.
“It is my spirit that addresses your spirit; just as if both had passed through the grave, and we stood at God’s feet, equal — as we are!”
For such a young girl, who had lived all her life separated from majority society in the early 1800s on a misty moor, she really knew what was up.
- Octavie Coudrea : This French woman lived in the early 20th century and after her husband died in her arms next to a Brazilian river, she a) made a coffin for him out of a broken boat, and then b) proceeded for the next seven years to explore intensely isolated areas of the Amazon. She led expeditions into the depths of the jungle and discovered essential information about this wild expanse of the earth.
She said “I’m an explorateur – this word can not bear to be feminine…” which really goes to show her courage and conviction in a time in which women were seriously subjugated..
She helps me to realize that I too can have the bravery to travel unheeded and alone into the heart of the world, collecting information and self growing beauty along the way.
Malala Yousafzai: This young lady motivates me everyday. She cuts through the sheer stupidity of popular culture and insists on talking publically about things that actually matter. She risked her own life for education, which is an easy thing to write, but such an insane thing to do. Her dedication to female empowerment is awe inspiring
I can’t believe her courage.
We need to realise that we, as women, are so capable. Of great bravery and sacrifice, of intrepid adventuring. Of abundant kindness and serious depth of character. Of intelligent and creative innovation. There is so much more to you than the wings of your eyeliner or the circumference of your thighs. We are floating on a giant rock through SPACE and honestly the way you look really just doesn’t matter that much. What does matter is realising that the Kardashians although admittedly entertaining, are not #goals. That you have the power to change things in the world, and your spirit matters so much significantly more than the way your arms look in that sleeveless dress. You are enough.
We need to understand our own power, and not allow it to be stripped away from us. In this world, where after Googling ‘amazing women’ the first options are ‘Amazing Foreign Women- LoveMe.Com’ and ‘Amazing women- Mail order brides, Ukraine Girls for marriage’ we need to come to terms with the fact that at the end of the day, beauty decays. Wealth can be lost. Youth disintegrates. All our postmodern pointers of success are doomed.
However, what remains, what we are remembered for by those who we love, and by the moral heart of society is our essential nature. Our passion, our Love, our zeal, and our steadfast conviction to do what is right.
At the very severe risk of sounding like a LIVE LOVE FAMILY FAITH HOPE board from a 2 dolla shop, I’m telling you to believe in yourself. Look to our foremothers and feel assured that your value does not rest in anything as material as your image.
The world is waiting for you.
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