I have been called a tomboy in the past because of the way I do certain things. To some people, I walk like a boy, dress like a boy, and cut my hair like a boy. While there are people who deliberately choose to be tomboys, it has never crossed my mind to behave like a boy. But then, in our society, once you deviate from the typical definition of femininity, the boxed roles, and expectations, you are seen as a tomboy.
Interestingly, many things I do are just things I want to do. Some of them come to me naturally like the way I walk, for example. I walk fast. It is something I have been doing for as long as I can remember. As a focused and goal-oriented person, I believe in getting to my desired destination as fast as possible. It saves time and seems to shorten the distance too. Some other things I do are just the choices I made. Like my hairstyle, for instance. Low cut suits me perfectly and is far more comfortable than braids for me. I also love that I can pour water on my head every day. I love these choices because they make me me and it has never occurred to me that I have been trying to be like a boy because that’s not my intention at all.
When I hear people comment on my choices, my looks, my pictures and they keep asking if I’m trying to be like a boy, it is tiring and sometimes really annoying. It is like all of my moves are policed. I mean, I take a picture and I get comments like ‘’Your poses are masculine”, “Why are you trying to be like a boy?” I wonder when expressing myself freely and doing me the best I can become trying to be like a boy.
The truth is that some so-called traits can be entwined and can be displayed by either of the two genders but most but most people (men and women alike) suppress these traits when they don’t conform to the societal definition of being a man or being a woman. People are forced to conform to these standards of femininity and masculinity so that the narrative. When women and men who embrace their personality rather than conform to stereotypical definitions of masculinity and femininity are seen as misfits,oddballs, rebels or radicals who need correction.
To hold onto these constructs is to suppress and stifle our individuality, disregard our personality, our strengths, and our weaknesses. Enough of the social conditioning already.
Let’s see through these lies and start living our truths. None of these things should determine who is masculine or feminine enough. We are who we are regardless of our strengths, weaknesses, likes, dislikes, and preferences. Enough with the unnecessary rules and shaming. Let women be. Let people be.
I love my femininity and I embrace it wholeheartedly but I will never subscribe to self-limiting definitions that will sabotage my possibilities of living to my full potential. I will embrace and enhance my femininity as much as it is in my capacity. I prefer to embrace my natural self without fear or shame. I would rather have the complete human experience and be seen as lesser than try to fit in and deny my unique personality, passions, and preferences full expression. I never try to be masculine and I just try to be me and do me. I choose to keep doing me and expressing myself as naturally as I can because no rules were meant to cage me.