Beautiful…

I will tell my daughter she is beautiful every waking day for as long as I live

Her father may tell her

Her brother may tell her

Her boyfriend may tell her

Damn! Even her husband may tell her

But for as long as I live

I will tell my daughter she is beautiful

Because being beautiful is not a status that women have and men acknowledge

Because I want her to see it in herself before anyone else recognises it

Because I want her to believe it before anyone else chooses to do so

No matter her race , complexion, size, choice of dressing, beliefs and whatever else will matter at that time

For when she grows up knowing she is beautiful

She will understand that her beauty is for her and not anyone else’s

She will own it

She will protect it

She will be it

But more importantly, she will know that she is this and much more

She is funny, intelligent, witty, sassy, pragmatic, powerful

This and so much more

And when any other person, be it her father, brother, boyfriend, stranger, admirer, makanga, shopkeeper bequeaths her the title “ beautiful’

She may say thank you as a way of being polite

But really what she wants to say (or might say if she is like me) is “I know”

Not because she is arrogant

Not because she is rude

Not because her mother didn’t teach her manners ( a topic for another day)

Not because she doesn’t know any better

But because she truly does know

She has known it all her life

And that changes everything.

 

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