Insecurity is a Stinky Rip Tide
I notice the pairs of eyes looking me up and down, followed by whispers, pointing and more staring. The teenage girls are analyzing me. They think I'm slutty, confident, someone they want to be like or NOT... I don't know what they're thinking but damn it's uncomfortable trying to party when youngsters are judgin'. First of all, these girls are going crazy - screaming and reaching their hands towards Gnash & Goody Grace. When the hot musicians are jamming, the girls are in giggly bliss BUT when the music slows down or stops, the girls drop their shoulders forward, search for notifications on their phones and nervously look around the room at other people...mainly me. Now be warned....I'm sluttin' it up - boobs poppin' out of my lacy camisole, my skin-tight skirt was creepin' up high (blame it on the dope dance moves) and my shoulders were pulled way back with confidence. I think I look dope and I'm having fun so it's odd to me that people would be hating so hard but I get it...as a teenager, I was body-shy and uber-judgemental towards other girls (mainly out of jealousy and misunderstanding). Thankfully, a decade later, I've blossomed into confidence and I'm excited to be friends with everybody and I just want us all to feel happy & confident. AND YET, surrounded by all these teenage hormones, the insecurity in the air is palpable and I feel vulnerable. I feel a pull to conform, to not stand out or rock the boat or do things that appear 'slutty', 'immature' or 'dangerous' - to do whatever it takes so they'll stop staring at me. Fuck all that. I've spent the past two years breaking free from that mold so I can have a more fun life and maybe my lifestyle will even be an inspiration to some other girl who wants to break free and be a little weirder too. But in this moment, the pull of insecurity is like a strong riptide current beneath the water and I have spent the entire night resisting the urge to slouch, to cross my arms, to cover up, to stand still, to avoid eye contact. I'm a human and we humans love fitting in. But damn, when you're with a crowd that you DON'T want to fit in with, it's like holding out a metaphorical arm and boldly declaring, "You shall not pass!" Considering how much effort it took me, a confidence 28 year old woman who pushes herself on a daily basis to face her fears, to maintain open body language, I can only imagine the effort it would take a 16 year old girl swirling through the confusing pressures of high-school to stand up tall and proud. No wonder, they're all suffering from insecurity - it's like living in a teenage petri-dish and they're all rubbing their insecurity germs on each other so none of them can ever escape long enough to get a breath of fresh air.
Here's my message of the day:
A) If you're a grown ass woman, stand up tall and be a beacon of beautiful inspiration for the young women who meet you.
B) If you're a young woman feeling insecure, go make some friends with older powerful women and let their confidence will rub off on you.
C) If you're a young woman who's killin' it with confidence - props to you! I'm impressed and suggest you also spend time with older women to fuel that fire and become contagiously confident to lead your friends.
D) If you're a woman of any age and you're judging other women, go look in a mirror. I bet you're judging yourself even harder. Start learning about self-love (it's a big topic to explore), surround yourself with older confident women and the more you love yourself, it will be easier for you to start loving other girls too. Don't be the bad apple in the barrel. Go fix your shitty attitude so you can feel happy.