I have this idea, that’s definitely not an original idea by any means, but it’s an idea that is terrifying and widely unaccepted. Radical, reckless transparency. That’s right, I’m talking about being see-through, being honest about how you feel, honest about your shame, and the ugly parts of your life.
Now, this is radical because “social media.” What do we see when we scroll through our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter? Carefully crafted images with words beneath them to ensure that you get the right idea. I have been one of those people. I have many of those posts sitting on my Instagram as we speak. I have written, copy-and-pasted, posted then quickly deleted, and shamefully sat in my aloneness because I thought I was the only one having this experience. What do we not see? The dirty dishes in the sink, the twisty-twirl of hair you made in the shower this morning, the negative self-talk, that fart joke you told that made people think you were weird seven years ago, the way you pull out all of your underwear and leave them on the ground every morning-without fail, and the way you identify with that Body Positive Blogger that posted on her Instagram about how ashamed she was for being fat.
I mean, I understand why we do it. I understand why it’s radical to propose the idea of being transparent in a world that will rip you to shreds for being honest. But Dude, it’s necessary and it feels so liberating to get it out there. The first time you are thanked for putting your stuff out there, you begin to see how silly and crippling shame over our human experience is. We go through very similar things and feel so very alone all of the time. We are so focused on how our skin color is different, our bodies are different, our socio-economic situation is different, and we completely overlook how we are similar. We miss opportunities to connect with one another.
When I first made TheCurvyBrokeGirl a public blog, a distant relative that I had only ever known on Facebook gave me a call. She expressed that her daughter and I had gone through some of the same issues and she had no idea. She asked me to speak to her daughter and to give her some guidance. If I had never shared my struggles, that individual would have lived with the shame of being alone and feeling “flawed” and make no mistake, I would have to.
Liberate yourself from the stupid belief that you have to appear to “have it all together.” My friend, I can assure you, the ones that seem to have it together, most def do not. They struggle with imperfect bodies, relationships, friendships, work situations, vacations, cars, vaginas, and dicks- just like you. The more we talk about the things we are ashamed about, the better we feel, the more room we make to grow into a better human, and the general consistency of our human experience becomes an ooey-gooey brownie one.
I can say that being myself means that people love me more often than they used. Now, I’m not scared to make friends. But the truth still stands, a lot of people still think I’m weird and crass and loud and probably a little bit crazy? But I have learned that the most important opinion of me, is my own opinion. Every time I insult a woman, every time I make an oppressive statement, every time I am inconsiderate or selfish, any time I lie about who I really am, I am ashamed of it. Saying or doing any of those things to impress another human takes me away from my convictions. My opinion of myself is changed and I begin to question my beliefs. I don’t want to be that person. I would rather be recklessly myself than a copycat.
-The Curvy Broke Girl