The Dissident

23.JPGI was never taught to love myself – that´s not something most latin, catholic, conservative mums teach their daughters. With their best intentions in mind, they “educate” us to fit in, to follow the rules (be a good girl), to join the crowds of women, who came before them, and grab the endless cross they´ve been carrying around for centuries.

-Why don´t you join us, sister? We need you to help us bear the burden. You´re a woman so be one of us.

I nod and wish them good luck. They envy me, love me, hate me for that.

Life taught me to love myself. I´ve been living and paying attention while at it. That´s all it takes to learn: doing it and paying attention to the causes and the consequences.

Although the exterior world still lifts its eyebrow every time a woman declares “I LOVE MYSELF”, I´ve learnt to shrug my shoulders, let the ignorance go and laugh above it all. Never, ever, apologizing for the beauty of (all) that I am.
I hope our daughters, and the daughters of their daughters, drop the cross. It´s about time.

Joana Saahirah


Photos taken at home by my sister Ana Samuel

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