Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Salute to the Good Girl (Stay Beautiful.)

Nothing about filling the big shoes of a grown up are as exciting as it seemed when I was just a little girl.  Of course, life post-21 has it's perks, however it's not as glamorous as I anticipated it to be.  I can vividly remember watching my older cousins get dressed for parties in fabulous outfits right before my set bedtime and hear them stumble into the house at wee hours, hair messy and clothes reeking of sweat and the poison I wasn't old enough for.  Sometimes they'd quietly make an entrance with an attractive companion, who would only be there for a few hours.  Or staring into the TV whenever I had the time to do so, envious of all the things big girls had the permission to do.  From my angle, it was a life full of constant fun and freedom. I was completely convinced that my life would unfold in a way that would reach beyond boring homework, limited recess, and degrading chores.


In high school, I didn't quite posses the same exact passion to grow up I had then, but I was still in a hurry for college life.  It didn't strike me that the load of responsibilities would gradually increase and life wasn't going to magically get easier.  Coming from a semi-strict background, I believed my parents were overbearing; I could not wait to experience what life was like away from them.  I thought everything that came out of their mouth was bologna and every revolt to be treated more like an adult was the right thing to do. Little did I know, which I eventually learned the hard way, was that 99.9% of the time, they actually were right and were probably the only ones who really had my best interest at heart.
[Disclaimer: There was a point in my life that I can recall being so innocent. I didn't do anything but go to school, participate in sports, and work easy, yet well-paying summer jobs. Sober. Virgin. Pure. Went to church every Sunday. Never really was the party type. Although a lot occurred to strip that characteristic away from me, for a long time, I held tight to that good girl mentality.  Not saying that I regret anything, but deviating from that image caused a lot of unwanted problems and ill-thought decisions, which leads me to expressing myself in this way.]
Finally, I was free.  I jumped at the opportunity to attend school out of state, as well as every other opportunity that followed to prove that I was indeed capable of independence. By 19, I had my own car, own apartment, and worked and went to school full time.  Even though I called home everyday, I still only had me, myself, and I to answer to.  It felt great, but the feeling was only temporary. Not to say there is anything wrong with that, but there was no real need to rush those things. Long story short, I had it all, lost it all, moved from home, moved back home, and in between time, wasn't that good girl anymore, not because of how established I was, but because I allowed myself to be swallowed by the independence and wasn't handling my obligations in responsible ways.  For instance, careless spending and heavy drinking became the normal. I opened myself up to engage in sexual activities with the wrong men (when I originally vowed to save myself for the man God designed to be my husband).  So much happened that made me grow up so fast and as much as I prayed for forgiveness, I continued to slip into bottomless holes, afraid that I would never find the courage to forgive myself.   

In retrospect, I admittedly have quite a few incredible and not-so-incredible memories of drunken nights and college life, accompanied by bad/impulsive decisions, but sometimes I just wish I could go back to being the good girl who just did the right thing, especially when I meet girls my age who are.  Regrets aren't good to have, but if I'm honest enough with myself, I know that I do have a few, even though those mistakes helped to mold me into who I am today, the woman I take pride in.  The amazing part about where I've been has to be the lessons I've learned that I am able to pass on to others.  I am far from perfect, but as a young woman whose been through so much in journey thusfar and bound to see more, I do at least have a stronger voice of experience that could make me a good candidate to advocate, empower, and stand behind the "good girl" that this sex-driven society likes to look down on. 

Every time I have the chance, I will reiterate to the little girls in my life the beauty of innocence and how hard it is to get it back once lost. It's okay to not smoke or drink. It's okay to be called a nerd (intelligence is sexy, therefore, quite cool). It's okay to be the last of your friends to have sex. It's okay to not want tattoo's just because everyone else, including me, has them.  Everything that glitters ain't gold and the right people will respect you for standing up for yourself when you feel the pressure to follow the crowd.

Because of the school of hard knocks, I will be able to tell my future daughter(s) why I'd want her to stay innocent as long as possible. Hopefully, I will marry a man who constantly validates her and whose parenting aligns with mine to have a two-force effort to steer her in a positive direction. We will tell her things like:
  • Realize the importance of education
  • You are loved
  • Stay focused and be serious about the pursuit of higher learning
  • Choose friends/associates wisely
  • Make mistakes, but don't repeat them
  • Her body is sacred and she is worth waiting on 
  • Do not step out of the refinement of being a lady when consuming alcohol   
These are just a few of the plethora of things my parents tried to drill into my head. I am not downing them as parents at all, because despite what I've done, I've always subconsciously knew better and I do think they did a great job. If she is anything like me, stubborn and impatient, I just hope that one day she is able to stand at the same cross roads I did, but choose to not take the potentially dangerous path, because her grace may just be different. As long as she is willing to walk through life at a naturally steady pace and is able to grasp the complete concept of staying true to who she is, I can guarantee the quality of life will be significantly better in the long run.

Young girl, know that everything in life happens at the right time. When your life seems hard, it is not the end of the world. You are uniquely and wonderfully made, so always remember if you are committed to being strong, confident, and staying beautiful and you will have the natural, divine ability conquer worlds.

Chymere Anais


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1 comment

  1. You are an awesome writer and have a knack for storytelling! I LOVE! I also love the advice you hope to give your future daughter(s) some day, I hope to do the same. Life is full of relatively simple lessons but the road to getting to that lesson proves to be the hard part. I really enjoyed reading some of your insight!

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