Oh, how I have struggled with being both/and.
You can’t be sexy and smart.
You can’t be goofy and smart.
You have to be serious to be seen as smart.
You have to tame your sensuality to be perceived as smart.
When I was in middle and high school I was told I was pretty but dumb. It was a light-hearted saying that was meant to make me feel better about my stupid questions, my bad grades, my inability to focus on homework I didn’t care about.
I wanted to be smart though. It took me years into college before I realized, for myself, that I was smart. But I still had this perception that I had to prove I was smart and the way to do that was to be less pretty, less sexy, and certainly, I couldn’t let anyone see my goofy side. I wanted to be taken seriously and I was willing to hide who I was to be known as smart.
There was no space for my feminity and my child-like wonder to shine without judgment, without taking away from being smart. There was so much I didn’t realize, so much I rejected about myself. I am learning how to unlearn and relearn. I love being able to play with what it is like to be both of all the things.
I am wise and I am a goofball.
I am warm and compassionate and an unapologetic truth-teller.
I am sensual and sharp.
“The two facets are not at odds; they are in complement. They are the umami & the sweetness. The harmony & the melody. The orange & the purple. The masculine & the feminine.”
~Tanya Geisler (link to full piece)
Tanya Geisler gets me. But more importantly, I get myself.