I Refuse To Be Defined By Anyone Who Doesn’t Have The Ability To Appreciate My Unique Beauty. I’m me. I’m Okay With Me.

After all of the female protesters, some recent idle gossip and after that gossip found its way to me today, I was thinking:
I want to start a crusade for the victims who suffer from the effects of self-righteous judgment that comes from within their very own social circle or community. I’ve decided I’m an expert on the subject and could lead the crusade brilliantly.

Apparently, my clothes & personal style is a wonderful topic for loose-lipped whisperers who aren’t intelligent enough to have a conversation without it involving tearing someone down. How sad that a woman is forced to question who she is or her very own persona based on idle gossip that seems to always make its way back to the intended target. BAM!
Not that I owe anyone an explanation or I have to defend me to another living being, but I have to wonder if these same folks know that my normal wardrobe is Nike shorts & a hoodie—ooooh that’s so risqué. Totally hot gossip worthy material! It’s kind of hard to work like a rented mule while wearing itchy sequins or stilettos.

Social media only gives you the highlighted reel instead of the behind the scenes. It’s easy to think I’m prancing around in my kitchen in a pair of Louboutin heels and a prom dress.

I ain’t. In fact, “a” picture doesn’t sum up my life. If a photo had that power, some of y’all would be in a heap of trouble and what you’re wearing would be the least of your issues. True story.
My clothes or shoes, or the loose-lipped folks discussing the topic is not a new issue for me…which always makes me roll my eyes. I’ve been dealing with it for more years than matter, when it should never have been an issue in the first place. However, through the process of defending what I pulled out of my closet for the day–you know–the same closet that doesn’t hold one item purchase by the loose-lipped folks, I’ve learned quite a bit. For instance, don’t ever make the mistake of wearing shorts and changing from athletic shoes into a pair of authentic western boots when you’re in wet pine straw–you know–conditions that the boots are made for, because that may or may not make you a strumpet…and not the kind that accompany your hot tea or coffee. Also, do not wear a heel higher than an inch, any garment that has any type of color or shine, and for the love of all things sacred, do not take pride in yourself or any part of your appearance because you’ll be publicly lynched. I’ve learned that you’ll be better received in pajama pants, a stained teeshirt, a messy bun….sans makeup.

I’ve never worn anything or been photographed dressed in anything that would allow an opinion to formed, my morals to be questioned or have my integrity weighed int the balance. Trendy? Yes. Trashy? Nope.

I don’t buy my clothes at “You’re Too Old To Be A Stripper”.

Most come from a department store, in the women’s department–not teen–which must mean they are age appropriate, trendy clothes for adult women. It doesn’t seem to matter. I’m convinced I could be in a moo-moo and folks would still bump their gums. I suppose there are people out there who are just not happy unless they are tearing folks down.

Ahhhh…but it just isn’t my clothes. Three weeks ago, a woman decided it was open season to psychoanalyze me based on a bag I was carrying. A really big bag that all of my music gear will fit in. A bag that was a free gift for purchase from a department store. A bag that must be a faux pas because it made the horrible mistake of including shiny silver sequins. This woman said verbatim,

“You have your big flashy bag that says “LOOK AT ME!”, but you’re too snobby & insecure to look back with friendly smile….and that makes you snobby and unapproachable.

Huh? I was summed up by my free gift bag with purchase all because of some bling. She never considered the fact that I needed the ginormous bag to carry all of my music material into a place where I gave my time & talent–for free–and had to supply my own equipment. She only saw the bag. The bag that must scream I’m insecure, unapproachable, and “really” bothered her. Her words, not mine. How could my bag have an effect on another person is beyond me, but it did. Unbelievable.

I wonder if these tongue waggers realize I didn’t wear shorts until after I married because of verbal abuse that led me to believe I should be living in a Bell Tower and only coming down to have my hump analyzed? I wonder if they realize it’s not common to see me in sleeveless or v-neck tops because I’m built like a linebacker for the Packers? Nah. They don’t bother with any history or facts about a person, it’s way too easy to judge someone based on a single shiny sequin.

That—in no way defines —me but, it certainly defines them.

After much consideration, I’ve pondered: Should I be wearing beige & black in hopes of not being judged or offending people? Should I post a social media poll to have an outfit approved before donning my highly offensive turtleneck? Should I post a disclaimer with every photo defending me with an apology for dressing in anything other than yoga pants & my husbands sweat shirt? Nah. I’m sure there’d still be room for judgement.

I’ve found that these tongue waggers are typically the type who have crossed arms as they make a face like they smell a bad smell as they approach anyone who doesn’t fit into the narrow box of what they declare as appropriate & normal. They are generally unhappy. Bitter. Negative. And mean.

My question is:
Who do you think you are? Why would you think you have the authority to judge or make anyone a topic of your conversation?
My other question is:
Do you have any idea what your words do to another human being? Your tongue is your most powerful weapon. It’s small & it’s concealed. If your weapon is not wielded correctly, it causes a lot of damage. Your tongue is used to create thousands of words a day. Each word you speak has the power to harm or heal, hurt or help. There’s usually not a lot of healing or helping. Simple fact.

Do whispering people–mostly women–get some sort of reward from tearing down other unaware, innocent people? Is my taste in clothes affecting you in some negative way that I’m not aware of? Are you mad that I’m gutsy enough to step out of the box and shine–thank you sequins–while you’re huddled in a corner wearing your black slacks & sensible shoes? Because I’m certainly not judging you or your style or fashion choices. Personally, I really don’t care and my time is too important to waste on such absurd nonsense.

I’m not going to protest while dragging my poster board around like it’s my cross, but I’m also not going to apologize for being me.

If you’re using your social time or lunch hour to discuss me or my clothes, that makes you a fan. So, thank you. If you’re staring, I’m assuming you’re taking notes on how to be awesome.

Otherwise, you’d be “tending to your own knitting”.

I’ve never been one to blend in with the crowd. That’s not a horrible thing. That doesn’t make me immoral, tasteless, or a lady without class. However, you judging me & discussing me in a negative way makes you petty and desperately needing interesting content for conversation.

Instead of ripping someone to shreds while you–clearly–continue to have one foot on The Throne, use that energy to brighten someone’s day. Instead of being a stumbling block of hurt for a fellow human being, consider your words before you spew toxic hurt that’s impossible for you to take back. Malicious gossip hurts. Judgement hurts. Don’t you ever point a finger without acknowledging the three pointing back at you.

I’m not sorry for wearing clothes that completely cover my body, but may shine a little. I’m not sorry for not being like you. I’m not sorry for having a personal taste or style that isn’t appealing to you. I’m not sorry for being me. My “I’m Sorry” button is broken. I’m okay with me.

To those of you who enjoy living your life stepping out of the box while adding some bling, ROCK ON, SISTERS! Put on your flash and be okay with it.

I refuse to be defined by anyone who doesn’t have the ability to appreciate my unique beauty. I’m me. I’m okay with me.
-T

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