After reading Petra Collins’ speech, I thought about how tiresome it must be to always be questioned for your actions.
I used to think that movements centered around women’s body hair and hygiene was not necessarily “useful” to the bigger cause of equality between men and women. Fortunately, after reading what Petra Collins had to say, it opened my eyes to understand why everything people do in the name of positive change for equality is useful. Although I may not post pictures of myself online with body hair showing, I think it is helpful for these actions to be widely accepted so that girls, young and old, can feel comfortable in who they want to be. When we get to the point of where men and women are equal in terms of payment for the same job, I think it would also be nice for women to be comfortable in their body in any which way they prefer.
A word I have grown to really love is ‘autonomy’. Now, especially, living well over 1000 miles away from home, I realize how much autonomy I am privileged to having. The autonomy I have right now is one in which I can do, or not do, anything I please, and I do not have to respond to a question of, “Why did you do that?”. This freedom that I feel right now is one I feel women, and ultimately everyone, should have. I want to live in a world where a woman can post a photo of her in her natural state without being questioned as to why. Autonomy is what I believe everyone should have, and once when we have that autonomy is when we should be able to build ourselves to become the type of person we wish to be, navigating our lives in a way that we find beneficial in a way that meets our values without the force of negative society. I especially want to live in a world where a woman’s actions are not always done in order to spread a “message”, but rather because a woman simply wants to. Not everything I do should be a political statement for the masses, at least that’s a type of mentality I hope to one day be had by everyone.
We are all trying to reach our own versions of cloud nine, and I think in a world where others’ standards of who we should be is the ideal, it will be very hard to attain this. Happiness is felt individually, and because of this fact we all find our happiness in different ways. I think that when we allow one another to find our own sort of happiness, one in which that does not negatively affect those around us, then it will definitely help us achieve a better standard of society. Besides, when you have your own happiness, you are not going to go out of your way to ruin some else’s.