Fighting Approval

I can have the worse cocky attitude you have ever seen, but if you tell me that something doesn’t flatter me I’ll stop and take a second look. Approval is the hardest battle in the #BodyPositiveMovement next to Acceptance. If you’re new to the movement then I should note that the latter is more on a personal level of you accepting yourself. In my experience, approval is a little germ that has crept it’s way into every small crevice of my life. I still catch myself asking my love, my sister, my mom and even my son “what do you think about this,” in referencing a particular piece of clothing, outfit, makeup or hairstyle. When they agree with my idea that it looks good, I have a renewed sense of self confidence because they have approved of my acceptance.

I went natural (hair reference) a year and a half ago. This is a journey within itself outside of the #bodypositvemovement but still a major part in it as well. It is harder to get approval of my natural hair than of my natural body. No one in my family, my cousin aside, is a fan of the natural movement. They accept my choice, but they’d rather I’d slapped a perm in my head than rock my fro to work or a night out. Their inadvertent negativity to my natural hair choice has made me more aware of my innate need for approval. Twisting my fingers through my funky fro one evening I asked my mom, “how does this look?” She held a semi-smile on her face and responded, “well you know I don’t like the natural thing, so you probably shouldn’t ask me.” Being myself, what I heard was simply I’m not you so it doesn’t matter.  She was right! Now anytime I find myself about to ask someone, “how does this look” or “how does this fit,”  I turn the question inward and ask myself.

Do I feel good in this outfit? How does this make me look? Did it make me smile when I put it on? If this criteria is met then I’m good. It is still a growing process as I still find myself catching a whisper of someone else’s discontent hidden behind a cheerful voice and unasked for suggestion like “why don’t you get your hair braided?” Um…because I’m grown, I’m a bitch and I do whatever the fuck I want…anymore questions or suggestions? So don’t bother asking anyone if something “fits right” or “looks good on you” because they are not the ones wearing it, you are! I have stood in the mirror too long before changing and adjusting myself because of the thoughts of others, believing I needed their approval of who I was and what I was wearing. Do you find yourself seeking the approval of others for your choices about you? If so, ask yourself, what bills do they pay in my house? Exactly.





You never know how sensitive self-esteem is until you have to build that bitch up from nothing. Life recently reminded me of just that fact. My self-confidence, self-love, cocky bitchness, self-acceptance, self-appreciation and fuck-what-you-think mindset broke on me all at once. My wall I had built came crashing down. It was not because of something someone said to me. It was neither because of a mean spirited online post nor from just pure ignorance of the human race. It was because medically something ugly was attached to me.

Still in shock, I am fighting tears even typing this. How could something so ugly be on or ball and chainattached to something so beautiful is what I kept asking myself with the results in my hand. I was broken, a defective woman. Who would want damaged goods? Between sobs I searched online for answers to my dilemma, this couldn’t be life. “You’re not alone. Half of America is dealing with this.” These words were supposed to comfort me. They did not. Half of  America was not me.

Brick by brick this wall I had taken the last ten years to build was coming apart. Not only was I defective, broken, I was a fat-nappy headed-black-broken-defective woman. brick by brickDescriptive terms that had went from hurting me to healing me went back to destroying me with the flick of a switch. Two days before my two-year anniversary with the love of my life I was thinking this amazing man was superficial and would agree with my negative outlook and find something better. I was wrong.


He reminded me of who I had become. For a brief second I had lost sight of the victories I had won because I started to focus on one loss. After a couple of days of slumming around I am sure I would have come to the same conclusion, but still the support system is one hell of a thing. This situation did make me stop and ponder still. Was I building my self-esteem or was I just building a wall to shield me from the world?

I was doing both. I had built the wall in order to give me time to work on the only strong-black-womanenemy that mattered, I. While the wall I built battled the world, I was becoming champion of myself. I was winning too. It was just that added weight (no pun intended) to my structure that left me being jumped by everything I was trying to keep out and defeat. Last night they had won, but the fight isn’t over. I needed my wall to fall so that I could better assess the situation. When I first started building, I wasn’t ready for battle yet. I had to strategize and train. They have fucked up now. I want to thank you life for waking this sleeping giant.

Have there been times where your self-confidence has taken a hit? What do you do to continue your #BodyConfidence journey?