One thing I’ve been experimenting with lately and hence, thinking about, is women and facial hair. I started plucking my hair when I was about 12 and as of about two months ago just stopped. I was told not to pick on myself anymore and to love myself…so that is what I am doing :) If you would have asked me three months ago to go natural, I would have ran away from you!
It’s really fascinating to witness myself and where I feel more or less uncomfortable, who I am around and in what lighting and so forth. It has also been an amazing way to increase my self-acceptance, not hide and release shame. To be able to look squarely at somebody and just embrace that this is the way that I am.
Not that this is where all women are coming from, but this is where I was. You see what happened when I was 12 was that I was picked on by some older boys at school about my facial hair. I did not have the tools then to let it bounce off of me and so I internalized it. Most likely I started plucking that day! I felt like it was a flaw that I needed to hide in order to be seen as desirable…the funny thing is those same boys became my really good friends a few years after that…AND a couple of them had crushes on me.
Nonetheless, the shame started then and it has been very uplifting to let some of it go. It hasn’t gone all at once though and is certainly a process. It has been a process within a bigger transformation that I am going through and one that has involved connecting more deeply with people, opening my heart and being vulnerable. Like, this post is pretty vulnerable.
So now I get to sit with my wild and dark eyebrows and upper lip hair on my sort- of-pale-skin and see how I feel. There is a deep part of me that really likes it. In Yogic traditions, it is said that removing eyebrows damages the third eye.
Maybe I will decide to remove my facial hair again or maybe not.
The power is in the choice.
The point is to make a FREE choice, based on what I like, what I want and who I am and not based on what women are “supposed to” look like in this culture or what is perceived as “desirable” and therefore worthy and valuable.
It has brought up many feelings around being valuable and how I value myself. I have noticed as a woman that value is often measured or given based upon attractiveness, attention from men or other traits that are not my core spark and spirit.
At the same time, I was coming from that place and undervaluing myself. I can honestly say that since I have begun to open up and come out of hiding that I have had many more positive interactions with people, both men and women. So maybe the pressure we put on ourselves is much more than anything outside of ourselves.
Are you a woman blessed with alot of hair? What do you choose to do with it? I would love to hear about your experiences.
Image: Frida Kahlo or a lookalike