A lot of times I hear people make different sort of comments about my dark skin. I’ll hear them call me names such as “Blackky”, Charcoal”, “Dudu”, “Ebony”. e.t.c. and deep within my heart a spring of insecurity bubbles. “Should I see it as a compliment or am I being mocked?”
It makes me wonder why sometimes we feel comfortable accepting some people’s compliment, and actually believe it is true but with others we simply feel we are being mocked?
What is the determining factor for what is meant as a compliment and what is actually a slur? I mean if someone told you that you looked drop dead gorgeous, would you look at yourself twice in the mirror to be sure you were truly deserving of such compliment, or would you accept it gracefully?
If on a bad hair day, you are complimented for having a pretty hair, would you give the person the “bad eye” for mocking you or blush and say “thank you”? What do you do on a day when you feel particularly pretty and then someone makes a negative comment about your look, do you smile in confidence and say “I am beautiful & I know it”, or do you start to doubt if you actually looked good?
I grew up as a young girl with a battered self esteem, and even though I was told I was pretty, I never saw myself in that light. I didn’t look like the regular light-skinned, slim, tall attractive girl, so I put myself in a box and tagged myself “not-so-pretty” and if by any chance you called me pretty, I would have you labelled “enemy of the year” because I simply felt I was being mocked.
Over & over again people kept telling me I had very gorgeous eyes (now I know I do), but as a young girl, I really didn’t see the big deal, they looked so regular. To make matters worse, I had eye-bags.So I’d stand in front of the mirror and ask “what could be so pretty about these eyes?”
My complexion was another issue. While some people thought I had a beautiful ebony skin, other people thought I was simply too black to be called pretty, some even thought my skin color was as a result of poor hygiene. Some may have been sincere compliments, while others may just have been wicked mockery, but the major difference between who I was then and who I am now is simply my mindset. The opinion I have of myself is right up there just below what God thinks of me and that is so much higher than what any other body thinks. I also remember somewhere in the Holy Book where my maker calls me a masterpiece. Wow! Then I am truly one.
I don’t really care if you think I have a big nose, or if you think I am too skinny, or that my ears are wide and flappy. Your opinion of me is yours. I can accept it, appreciate it, I can even respect it; but I would not base my decisions or actions solely on what you think about me. What should matter most is the opinion you have of yourself, and though it’s normal for people to make their comments, they should not draw the standards for you.
So now, If you ask me about myself, I’ll tell you that I am a beautiful dark-skinned young lady, with a slim petite body to die for. I have gorgeous eyes with beautiful round cheeks. I am smart, intelligent, creative and playful.
Henceforth, when somebody makes a comment and you’re not sure if they mean to mock you or they’re just saying the closest thing they can think of, don’t get mad or insecure. Smile, because you already know too well that you are a ‘masterpiece’.