Category Archives: ladies

One Hell of a Hairy Woman

July 13, 2014

Guest Post by Dana Sukontarak

Last night, I came across an article about why women should have their vaginas waxed before birthing a baby. After reading the title, I was certain it would be a parody article, a way to explore the many ways women are held to ridiculous and brutalizing beauty standards. Much to my chagrin, it was not. This woman really believed waxing your nether regions was a warm-hearted courtesy to the delivering doctor and any onlookers, as well as a “non-negotiable” for all women.

The author compares it to brushing your teeth before seeing the dentist. I’m sure if a bloody, 8 lb. baby were preparing to smash its way out of your body by way of your mouth, it wouldn’t matter if you brushed. It also wouldn’t matter if you had a little mustache hair. Just saying.

Dana Sukontarak

Dana Sukontarak

For a split second, I did sit here, contemplating my prickly pubes and my long hair with split ends to my scalp and my dirt-encrusted, two-years-unpainted fingernails and my 25-year-old ghost town of a womb—wondering if I really am a woman. A woman wouldn’t wear sandals without a pedicure. A woman doesn’t fart (and laugh about it). A woman would never consider letting a medical professional deliver her baby while there were unsightly scraps of (gasp!) hair around. I’m no expert in childbirth, but I’m pretty sure your pubic hair won’t be a topic of conversation at all—it will probably also be the least gross thing anyone sees that day. It’s pretty unlikely any of your Twitter followers will happen into your delivery room and start a hashtag about #YourDisgustingPubicHair.

This is what I want for women—to consider the bigger picture of all things. Will a freshly-waxed vagina in the delivery room really help you, or the doctor, or any women? If anything, it will only help perpetuate the mannequin standards we unfairly impose on women, ourselves included. A woman who is preparing to bring life into the world deserves a back massage and crudité platter, not to have her pubic hairs ripped out at the root so that no one is possibly offended.

What I want for women is to take pride in our bodies while still understanding that our bodies are not the true essence of us. They are temporary, they are fragile, they are ever-changing. The more you realize how fleeting the physical is, the more things shift into perspective. Pubic hair is no biggie.

What I really want for women is for us to broaden our ideas of beauty. Why is body hair gross? Because we said it is, and now it is? Why should we aspire to having a Barbie waist and a really big, somehow undimpled and unrippled ass? Why do any of us pay to enlarge the sacks of mammary fat we carry around? Why is it preferable to some women to pay hundreds of dollars for someone else’s hair, than to wear their own? Who decided which looks better? Our opinions can’t help but be influenced by society’s prevailing beliefs—unless we are aware of the forces at work and mindful of how we interact with them.

That said, wax if it makes you feel better about yourself, but at least think about why that would make you feel good in the first place—and whether you would feel like less of a woman if you didn’t.

I’m one hell of a woman, if I do say so myself. Hairy, too.

Dana Sukontarak is 25 years old and lives in Hyattsville, Md. She graduated from the University of Maryland in 2012 with a B.A. in Journalism. She enjoys reading fiction, writing non-fiction, and learning about the world.
Twitter: @SQUIDGYPSY
Blogs: www.danasukontarak.blogspot.com, 50 Books in 2014, small suggestions

I Don’t Want To Be Your Muse.

March 10, 2014

“I do not wish women to have power over men; but over themselves.” Mary Wollstonecraft

Happy Belated International Women’s Day to you and yours. And, an even happier National Women’s History Month to everyone. This month has me feeling all rah rah for estrogen, or maybe that’s just every day of my life. Oh, well.

On Saturday I stumbled upon Thought Catalog’s “30 Greatest Quotes About Women” which is where I pulled the Mary Wollstonecraft wisdom from. I think there’s this misconception that feminists want to torch our bras, overthrow men and revolt against the entire world. That’s why I like the Mary Wollstonecraft quote. Because most days, I just wish women would seize the power over themselves that they rightfully deserve.

Too many women, self included, are always waiting for people to tell us that it is OK. We waste so much time tip-toeing our way through life and patiently waiting for someone to say, “Sure, you can do that” and “Yes, it’s your turn.” And 24 short years in this world have taught me that life does not work that way. You want something, you grab it. You need something, you better leap across buildings and teeter on tightropes until you get it. If you wait for other people to give you permission for what you know is rightfully yours, you may wait forever.

I’ve been called headstrong more than a few times in my life. But, if being a woman who is unafraid to create and hold down her own shit makes me headstrong, that is an adjective you can gladly add to my list of traits. I don’t want to be anybody’s muse. I don’t want to be the trophy wife. I don’t want to be somebody’s ride-or-die. I am not the muse. I am not the trophy. In the words of Olivia Pope during the latest episode of Scandal, I am not a prize. I am a person.

Maybe that’s why I roar my way through life because I get tired of the incessant rhetoric that women are objects or awards. I get sickened by the constant “single girl shaming” and the idea that until or unless you have found a life partner, you are somehow incomplete. I say fuck that. Fuck all of that.

I don’t want to marry rich; I want to be rich. I don’t want to be the muse; I need a muse so I can keep creating really dope shit that people want to read and hear and see. I don’t want to be the trophy; I want to win all the damn trophies for all of the hard work I put in. I don’t want to chase men; I want to chase my dreams. I am not dying to be loved; I am dying to be understood. Being understood is the first step.

I wouldn’t ever be a good muse, anyway. Muses are meant to be gazed upon. They are meant to be seen and not heard. I wasn’t ever designed for that. But, women? Women are meant to speak. Women are meant to roar. Women are meant to shout. Women are meant to create. Women are meant to move and jump and dance. Women are meant to be heard and not just seen. I don’t want to be a muse. I want to be a woman. I was designed just for that.

Xoxo,

Tyece

Lena Dunham Looks Good In A Bikini And So Do The Rest Of Us

February 18, 2014

Wildflowers Unscripted Writing Challenge Day 18: My body

I realize this is the third blog post I’ve written with Lena Dunham’s name in the title so excuse me while I fangirl out for a bit.

You don’t have to be an avid viewer of “Girls” to know that Lena Dunham shows her bare body on the show quite a bit. If you are an avid viewer, however, you know that in the latest episode, Dunham spent about 90% of it clad in a bright green bikini and not much else. People have a lot to say about this woman’s body. But bodies are not political statements. They are very personal storehouses. And, that’s all I want to say before I dive in to talking about my own body.

There are certain inevitable truths we have to accept in life. One of the truths I have had to accept after 24 years on this planet is that my ass will never reach the appropriate level of curvature to qualify as a great ass. I know. It’s a difficult fact to stomach. But, I think I have finally reached the final stage of grief and accepted my very narrow ass.

That doesn’t stop me from spending every night dancing in front of the mirror in my underwear. I shower at night and as I get ready to do that, I blast music. Sometimes it’s J. Cole. Other times it’s Taylor Swift. Maybe it’s Mobb Deep or Adele. It doesn’t really matter. But, it’s one of my favorite parts of the day. Me in the mirror with my god awful dance moves and my narrow ass just dancing away.

I don’t think you can talk about your body without making light of it. Because I don’t think you can take your body that damn seriously. We exist in a world that already does enough to police how we fucking use our bodies, who we decide to let touch them and how we choose to adorn them. The world already takes our bodies way too seriously. It’s a sin for us to do the same.

Accepting our bodies is an ongoing, uphill, non-stop kind of battle. At least for women. Some days you wake up and you’re bloated. Some days it feels like nothing fits. Some days you feel hot and some days you feel, well, not. There’s hardly ever any consistency in our feelings about our bodies. We want rounder butts, flatter stomachs, slimmer thighs, bigger boobs. And, while the science of Spanx and the redemption of an ASOS bodycon dress can help us along the way, the skin we are in is pretty much there to stay. It may change. It may stretch. It may shrink. But, it is still there.

A beautiful body is one that is completely accepted by its inhabitant. That’s why Lena Dunham looks good in a bikini; the mere fact that she’s not afraid to put it on is enough. It’s nice when other people like our bodies or when they want to cuddle up next to them in the middle of the night. But those things don’t really count for shit if we don’t love that same body. I know; I sound like a walking ad for a Kotex commercial.  But, trust me on this one. It’s your skin. Those are your limbs. It’s your place laced with your scars and coated in your memories. It is your body. Believe in it or doubt it. Appreciate it or analyze it.  Let people do whatever they want with it, say whatever they want about it or choose to own it and all of the rhetoric about it. This is your body. It’s not going anywhere. Love it or hate it. But loving it makes this life so much easier.

Xoxo,

Tyece

Words About Me/My 2014 Vision Board

February 1, 2014

Writing Challenge Day 1: “About Me” done creatively (collage, poem, etc.)

Detalis for the challenge.

Detalis for the challenge.

Today kicks off the From A Wildflower and Twenties Unscripted February Writing Challenge. In the name of honesty, I should tell you I wasn’t quite sold on doing a writing challenge this month. Aside from my day job and blogging nightime life, I’m in the last four weeks of planning and producing my first art and performance showcase. So, tired is an understatement. I know; isn’t this such an optimistic start to the challenge?

But, I did a writing challenge back in August and even though I was exhausted and close to hurling my laptop out the window by the end of the month, I felt good. There’s something vainly fulfilling about saying that you wrote every day for 30 or 31 (or, in this case, 28) consecutive days. And, if anything else, it makes you appreciate the breaks you take from writing to unwind and trap new inspiration. The beauty of this month’s challenge is that we’re not being asked to produce 500-700 words the way I usually do when I write. There are short pieces, poems and even visuals built in to the month.

In fact, today’s topic called for us to do an “About Me” in a creative way. So, I decided to spend an evening surrounded by a bunch of my magazines cutting out words from them that I thought represented me–who I am, where I’ve been and where I’m going. I also think this collage will serve as my 2014 vision board.

collage

There are two quotes on the photo that are a bit tough to see, so I’ll type them out:

“What I like about young people is the potential is there but not developed yet. In a way, they’re sort of abstract.”

“I think people think I’m harder and more arrogant and cocky than I am because I know how to put on a front, but it’s nothing like who I am inside. To be honest, I’m really, overly, scarily sensitive.”

If your mental stamina hasn’t run out yet, consider joining the challenge. And, be sure to tweet me at @tyunscripted and my wonderful wildflower crew at @fromawildflower when you post. And use the hashtag #wildflowersunscripted. Don’t worry; we won’t crucify you if you miss some days. Well, at least I don’t think we will. That wasn’t part of the deal when we set this up.

Let’s write, fools.

Xoxo,

Tyece

I’m Not That Girl.

January 7, 2014

Crazy. Deranged. Out of her damn mind with a few screw loose. There are a lot of unfavorable terms we dump on women who display emotion. I’ve written about this before. And, then I wrote about it some more. But, as my sister relayed a conversation she had with a friend not too long ago, a newfound spark for the subject hit me.

“She said she wasn’t ‘that’ girl. She didn’t want to be ‘that’ girl. But, I told her you are a girl. Therefore you are ‘that’ girl.”

That was the advice my sister gave her friend when they were getting into the weeds about men and all the other luggage that comes along with them.

But, who is “that” girl? What the hell does that even mean? It’s certainly a term I’ve used before, whipping up this image in my mind of some woman who is needy and codependent, jealous and insecure. A woman who digs through a man’s social media accounts or drives by his house to see if he’s there when he doesn’t answer his phone. A woman so unsure of herself, so unable to find herself, that she loses all dignity and sanity when it comes to the opposite sex.

But, I don’t know why that’s an image I so quickly sashay away from, because the truth is I have never been “that” girl. At least not the one I just described. Most of us aren’t. Or, maybe we were, but we grew up. Or maybe we were some iteration of that, but we learned. We moved on. And we were never “that” girl again.

Zemanta Related Posts ThumbnailJust like a woman who loses herself when it comes to the opposite sex, maybe we, too, lose ourselves when we try so hard not to be “that” girl. Maybe when we try to arm ourselves with a layer of nonchalance and a shield of I-dont-give-a-fuck, we lose all of our color and whatever else makes us, us.

Because, we are limbs with warm red blood surging through our veins. So we are fallible. We are prone to mistakes. Susceptible to unexpected heartbreak and sometimes only a step away from emotional volcanos. We hurt. We break. We crack. Because this life doesn’t give us training wheels for quite long enough. We make messes. We spill. We blunder. Because this life is a no-helmet kind of sport. We feel. We connect. We attach. Because people are our bandages and connectedness is what heals our otherwise gaping wounds.

So, maybe we shouldn’t worry about not being “that” girl. Maybe we can only be whoever the hell we are supposed to be while we are here. Whatever the hell that looks like. Sounds like. Tastes like. Feels like. Maybe we should just attach ourselves to others while we are breathing bodies and pulsing hearts and wired minds with the good fortunate of being alive. Maybe we should just tell people how the fuck we feel. Maybe it’s awkward and uncomfortable, but my God, maybe it’s worth it. Maybe life isn’t a rom com and people don’t always tell us they love us back, maybe they do not love us at all, but that doesn’t make us any less for telling them. Maybe it makes us brave. Maybe it makes us human. Maybe it makes us “that” girl and maybe that’s not such a bad thing after all.

Xoxo,

Tyece