It’s a scary thing when you see the effects that others have had on you over time; when you never even questioned certain traits or thoughts you have until, one day, it becomes completely clear in an instant, and seemingly for no reason.
I am tired of thinking that the things I am interested in, the things that I find joy in doing, are not desirable by the opposite sex. Hear me out.
This blog is clearly centered around clothing; every post ends with the outfit I wore that day (with the exception of this series, of course). It’s easy to assume that that means I really like clothes and other “girly” things. Should that be seen as a negative thing? No. Is it? Well…I’m not as sure.
See, I’m extremely hesitant to share what I am currently creating (meaning, this blog and my Instagram) with other people or to let anyone know the amount of time or effort that actually goes into this, because I’m afraid they will think it is shallow. I never care anymore what people think of me because I’ve learned to accept who I am and like my quirks; it’s what makes me an individual. However, I still struggle with just this one thing, and I’m not sure why it matters to me so much. I never wanted to be seen as anything less than someone intelligent and interesting and full of substance, but why do I associate loving clothing and wanting to write about it, with being the opposite of “intelligent, interesting, and full of substance”?
Every guy I have dated had an obsession with gaming, and I’m pretty sure most of them still do. They made videos, talked about it all the time, played with me or when I was in the room, even went to competitions. And that is fine. Even though it’s not my cup of tea, why do I not see that as shallow and a waste of time, but they always saw my love for clothing as shallow and a waste of time? To the point of me subconsciously believing it?
Whether I do this as a hobby or something more, it should not looked down on. I should not be ashamed of it. I should not think, “no guy will like a such a shallow girl.” Dear Lord, I can’t even tell you how messed up that is.
Let me tell you a little story. I rarely watch any “beauty guru’s” on Youtube, but last night I came across the most well-known of them all, Zoella. I watched one video on makeup, then another, and one on quick hairstyles because I am atrocious at doing hair. After that, I stopped myself, not because I wanted to spend my time being productive or because I didn’t want to get sucked into the wormhole that is Youtube, but because I thought “I can’t enjoy this as much as I am; there isn’t enough substance.” Then I thought, “but it’s so interesting…why doesn’t it seem shallow?” After that, I decided to click on one more video, this one being a vlog with her boyfriend. My first thought was, “how did she get a boyfriend who was so okay, and even extremely supportive, of what she does for a living?” No, for the record, that has nothing to do with her looks; she’s freaking gorgeous. I also think she’s incredibly interesting to watch and she does not seem to be lacking in depth. But, do guys see that? How did a guy see past, what I assumed was preset in every guys mind, that they don’t like girls who focus too much of beauty and clothing?
And that’s when I realized, “oh my gosh, I’ve just been dating the same sexist jerk over and over again.” I’m not railing on my exes; that’s not what this post is about, but I will say that I have had plenty of guys give me the impression that I should care about beauty enough so that I look “good” (by their standards), but God forbid I actually enjoy it or spend any extra time on it or want to talk about it. Meanwhile, they can play videogames like it’s no tomorrow.
One thing that a person does and enjoys does not define their entire being. Yes, I love makeup. Yes, I love clothing. Yes, I love bubble baths and attempting to do my hair and hey, I also really like Starbucks. So what? I should not have to apologize for that. I know that I have depth. I know that I am intelligent. I know that God made each and every one of us to have different skill sets, and to love different things.
It’s like when people think art isn’t important. Artists are the ones designing whatever building you are in, they designed those billboards you pass everyday, they designed your iPhone you use everyday, they add life and color everywhere, even if you don’t notice it. We would not survive without artists. Art is everywhere. Plus, artists have passion and drive and something to offer the world, just like I know I, among many other women who are deemed as shallow for being creative, also do.
I am studying to be a teacher, I care deeply about the education system and want to give kids a good foundation, I love to draw and paint even if I am not great at it, I am a photographer, I am an avid reader, I am a writer. My favorite conversations are the ones where you have to push yourself and the other person to think deeper, to talk about theories on God and life and everything. I love people despite my extreme introversion, I’m a huge romantic, I have an obsession with everything that is Disney, the beach is my favorite place to think and relax and read, I am absolutely in love with my job at the library. I love my family with my entire heart, and my mom is my best friend.
Does my love for clothing negate all of those things, including everything I did not mention? Obviously not. I am a person, not just some stupid and shallow girl who wastes her time taking photos of her clothes and blogging about them.
I’m not saying that the entire male population has to be incredibly interested in the world of beauty and fashion. All I am saying is that I’m tired of the double standard, and being sexist to my own self because I cared more about if a guy will like me than pursuing something I am passionate about. Here’s the truth, and what dear Zoella and her boyfriend taught me: if he’s the right one, he will see you as an individual no matter what you pursue.
Like I said, I am a romantic. I was the little girl who dreamed of being swept away by Prince Charming. I still want a love story of my own, but I know that it will come when it comes, and if I am trying to be anything other than who I truly am (cue “Reflection” from Mulan), I’ll only be spending time involved in the wrong “love” stories. I will continue to be myself, to pursue what I want to pursue, and love will come when it should. I will not let anyone, including myself, keep me from what makes me an individual.
Again, I want to be completely clear that I am not railing on men. There are both men and women who have equally good and bad traits. The whole point is to remind anyone that they are not defined by one thing they do or do not like. Enjoy what you enjoy without fear of what others think. Also, I wanted to address the sexist idea that I’ve seen both men and women have that certain hobbies or professions a woman takes part in is shallow. If you want to do makeup for a living, if you want to craft or paint sunsets or whatever it is, do it. Don’t let others’ perception of you hold you back.