I used to roll my eyes at women in the gym or at the start line of races with caked on make-up.
I said it.
I never understood it.
Why? Why do you need to be so perfectly put together before you sweat and dirty up half that stuff?
Why are you so insecure that you need to hide yourself while you're working to make yourself better?
Why are you so desperate for male attention in those places? Do you think he is really going to notice your hard work instead of your hard eye-liner?
As you run, don't you want to be admired for more than how pretty you are?
Then experience made me grow up.
I had posted a picture on social media of me on a trail with my pup. A male commented,
"Why do you need to be prettied up with all that lipstick while you're outdoors? You can't possibly be a true outdoorsy girl with that look. I bet you're afraid to break a pretty nail, too!"
I had no idea what to say. Do I
A. Ignore and/or delete his ridiculous accusation so that I don't even justify his asshattery?
B. Explain to him that I forgot my chap-stick and a lip-gloss happened to be in my coat pocket?
This man doesn't know me. He doesn't know my circumstances for wearing what I wear. He has no right or reason to berate me with why I chose whatever lip color I freakin' wanted. I certainly don't owe him a justification, so why did I want to give him one?
Why do I care?
Then it dawned on me that I was no different than him- I just kept my mouth shut.
I was spending all this time internally judging and hating on women that took time out for themselves without knowing the full story. And even if I did know the full story, why the hell should that be something to judge? Does it hurt me or others? No. Then I needed to let that petty girl-hate go.I decided to ask around, to help myself be more open-minded. Some of the responses I heard were beautiful.
"I have a big scar on my face that people stare at in the gym if I don't cover it up. Them staring distracts me from my workout. It's not an issue anymore." - Jessica
"Make-up time is mommy time and my husband doesn't question it. It's the only time during the day at home that I can shut the door to the bathroom and focus on me. Even on days I don't want to wear make-up, I will if I need my mommy time." - Sarah
"I never wore much make-up until my mother passed away. Growing up I remember watching her do her make up every morning with her coffee on the vanity. Now I do that. It makes me feel closer to her. I miss her." - Jen
"It's fun. It's another form of art, just like drawing. But I get to be my own canvas. Make-up is a form of self expression just like a tattoo is, but I get to change it up!" - Emma
"Because I'm insecure. It makes me feel more confident."
To my surprise, most of the women I spoke with never mentioned or hinted that it had anything to do with men. It was about them. If having you feel more connected to your mom before a race encourages you, why wouldn't I want that for you? If you feel insecure, I absolutely want you to do what makes you feel more confident.
Right then I realized that I was being a bad woman.
No more girl hate for those fit chicks that look perfect in photos because they took the time for themselves.
No more girl hate for those fit chicks that can rock bright red lips at the start (especially when it's still bright red at the finish! How... How do you do that sorcery!?).
No more girl hate for something that has nothing to do with others, doesn't hurt others, and doesn't impede others.
No more girl hate.
Now, someone teach me how to put on eye-liner.