Freedom in this way

I was watching a movie where the lead chops her hair off after an event in her life. I’ve seen it many times in movies and series. 

Last year, I chopped my hair too. I had long hair and beautiful, according to others. It made me think why did I decided to cut them short. At that point, everything was happening too suddenly in my life and this was the only thing that seemed to be in my control. 

Chopping hair is about control, liberation. It’s about a lot of things to a lot of people. To me, it was a matter of control and how free it made me feel. 

It’s a belief that hair is one of the most beautiful features in a girl. I honestly think that the opinion differs from person to person. 

In fact, that’s not the only thing I wanted to talk about. I have wondered what makes women wear makeup. Now, the answer to that varies. It may be to look a certain way, to enhance confidence, or just because you like it. 

I wear lipstick and I really wear it because it looks good. For some women, it’s more than that. It’s the strength to be. It’s about picking up all your battles and moving on. It’s about leaving behind the problems of the day and taking on the world. 

I’ve met a woman of about 80 years old who had makeup on every time I saw her. I met her in the hospital. I assumed she had issues to deal with and that wearing makeup everyday just showed how strong she was to put all her pain behind and go on as if it’s just another day. 

It’s strange how we women seem like a mystery to the world, how doing hair and wearing makeup seems like a step to be more desirable, how it’s always about pleasing others rather than doing it for onself. 

Who would have thought that strands of hair and those colourful makeup products have stories of each individuals attached to them.

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A feminist’s voice

It really saddens me that many things in life are generalised. We’re all aware of life conditions of women in a patriarchal society. But what about men? Why are they ignored? Just because men don’t speak about their emotions openly doesn’t mean they’re not prisoners of societal mindset. Men face atrocities like harassment, molestation and are raped too. But they just can’t speak up. And even if they do try, nobody listens.

What about men who face atrocities just like women? ‘The responsibility bearers, strong one, less emotional, etc.’ Stop tagging them this way. Nothing in the world can be generalised. You can’t generalise the fact that only women are prisoners of patriarchy because even men who don’t want to conform to the institution are forced to do so against their will. And then there are men who stand up against it.

Maybe it’s time we stop stereotyping. We need to give men the space to be heard. We need to break the mindset that says ‘Be a man’. How do you define a man? Someone who’s strong, hides emotions and is more or less like a robot?

The reason we hear less about atrocities against men is that most of them feel embarrassed to come up to speak about it. Before shutting them up, let them speak.

It doesn’t make me less of a feminist on having said all of this. I support gender equality and I want both women and men to be heard.

And lastly, not all men are the same. Generalising them as same would be doing injustice to good ones.

Every voice is important. Free the voices from the void that you create because they’ll tell you a story that yearns to be heard.

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After waiting for several days, my book is no more enrolled in KDP Select. I can now give it away for free! Why? Simple: spread of ideas. I don’t care about selling my book for money. I want people to read and reflect, to discuss. This has been my intention since the beginning, but being enrolled in KDP Select, I didn’t have much choice.  I realised it doesn’t let me give my book away for free for as long as I wanted, which I hadn’t known well enough before enrolling. I now have the option and I’m going for it.

Blue Ashes is a chapbook containing poems about love, loss, grief, death, inspiration. I’ve always loved metaphors and I’ve used a lot of them in this book to convey my message.

Click here to download the book —> Blue Ashes 

Carpe diem!