Ugh, guys, the aliens are back. The cystic ingrown hairs are making a cozy home out of my chin, the malicious little lifeforms. Every two weeks it cycles. I'm starting to wonder, is this a new aspect to shaving my face (which I've been doing for years) that I'm just going to have to live with?
But that's not the topic of this post. I've been thinking a lot about hiding the hirsutism we're born with versus wearing it proudly. There are women who do this, even for a brief time, and I am so in awe of them. I would feel so intimidated to meet one of them, even though we're living with exactly the same thing. I view this courage in defiance of social norms as something so far above what I'm capable of.
And then I start feeling ashamed that I hide my body hair. And even though it's not right for us to feel ugly or worthless because we don't look the way we're "supposed to look", it's not right to feel there is a "proper way" to deal with it either.
The thing is, what are people thinking about women who openly wear their beards? Even as they challenge the world's boring notions of beauty, they're still subject to certain connotations. These connotations are sometimes positive to people, not just negative. But even the positive connotations are not me. I don't like to bring that much attention to myself, either by being bearded or anything else.
The beard is not who I am, in a negative way. It is also not who I am in a positive way, if that makes sense.
To put it another way, the perceived offensiveness is not who I am. But perceived bravery and defiance is not who I am, either.
I sometimes ask myself, "What am I trying to do here?" Do I hope to be part of a movement to make women with beards acceptable to all people? Is it so we can wear our beards unashamed?
The answer is no.
I want people to stop judging based on appearance. I want them to stop thinking women with beards are ill, or crazy, or in any way less deserving than other people.
And that's a tall order, so I also want all the girls with beards to stop hating themselves and obsess over what the media tells them is wrong with them. I want them to start investing in themselves and feel comfortable being who they are.
So there we are.
Today there's a picture of my chin as it existed before my first endocrinology appointment on my tumblr. Remember, some of the other images on there may not be appropriate for minors. Not that I reblog nudity to be provocative. I reblog it to be honest. ;)