So, I really hope I’m doing this right….this is my first time having a blog, and this is my very first time trying to post to it; so hopefully at the end of this anyone that wants to read this can; and it won’t just end up floating around lost on the interwebs, and leaving me feeling like I’ve completely wasted my time.
I guess I should start by introducing myself. My name is Mandy, I’m from small town Oregon and just moved about as far away as possilbe (to big old Miami, FL) for college to escape the harsh winters, and to try being on my own. My parents are wonderful and have been married for nearly 40 years; they have very conservative/traditonal values, and those have shaped a lot of my values, and views on how the world should be.
I’m telling you all of this, and will be sharing so much more, because I don’t believe in keeping things all bottled up and to yourself. You have to get issues out in the open if you ever hope to work thru them. But alas, I’m just a new girl in a town that I really don’t fit , at a college with a culture that is completely aginst the grain to the way I was raised, and with all of what used to be my support system what seems like a world away…so I’ve decided to turn to you internet to listen to my woes. I doubt anyone will actually read this, and that’s not really the point anyway…I don’t expect to change the world; I just want to a chance to get things off my chest, and I don’t feel like sitting down with a “traditional” diary, besides how judgemental can the internet really be???
So, now down to the heart of the matter…the breaking point of my recent angst pivots around Halloween. I found the cutest little pumpkin at the grocery store, and bought it with the intention of giving him a little face just like I’ve always decorated pumpkins growing up. When I was little I dressed up so many times as a fairy, or a princess, and even once as a cowgirl; we went door to door, and would collect a pillow case full of candy…those were the days. As teens we stopped going door to door, but we still dressed up; usually as whatever was popular that year…wizards like Harry Potter, or in more recent years as vampires; and we would make smores, or rice crispy treats, and one overly ambitious Halloween we made both, and we would have a slumber party and watch scary movies.
This is my first Halloween since leaving the safety and security of my little hometown back west, and to say that things are different in the big city would be an understatement of colossal magnitudes. This is also my first post-highschool Halloween; I guess deep down I have to admit I knew it would be different than what I was accustomed to, not so childish as a group of girls staying up late and watching cheesy movies. But come on, didn’t we skip a few steps along the way somewhere…almost every costume on the shelves of these party stores is missing the ‘ume’.
Now, before I go any further let me say that I don’t judge the women that want to wear these costumes at all. If you feel comfortable as the Sexy Swashbuckeling Pirate, then go out there and rock it girls; but somewhere along the way this has become the norm, it has become expected of women to more or less bare all in the name of a good time, and any woman that is hesitant about doing so is looked at as a prude, or as being stuck up. Somewhere along the way creativity, and imagination has given way to ‘just show more skin’; and the increase in peer pressure for young women to decrease what parts of their bodies they keep covered steems more from other women than from men.
I choose not to join any of the sororities when I got to campus, again I don’t judge…I wasn’t a party girl in highschool, and I don’t plan on being one now. I have several friends that are in sororities and they’re great girls, and even better friends. I’ve been invited to a couple of the parties Halloween night here on campus, but both times when I said that I would be more comfortalbe with a costume that wasn’t quite so revealing I was told that I wouldn’t really fit in, and that I should loosen up and learn to live a little. I’m absolutely fine with them having their fun their way; I’ve since decided to have my fun my way…I won’t be attending any parties this year; instead I’ve decided that I can watch scary movies all by myself, besides I have a flashlight if I get scared of the dark, but all of this has left me wondering…
What happened to the women that came before me fighting for equality? fighting to be taken seriously? fighting to be seen as more than just their body? What ever happend to the sisterhood? What happened to women banding together and being up lifting to each other? How is it after years of fighting to be more than just sex symbols we would willing take ourselves right back to that starting point?
I hope no one came here expecting some grand answer at the end…Lord knows I don’t have one; I just hope to feel not so lost someday.