She spent so much time consumed by what other people thought of her that it never occurred to her that she could spend that mental bandwidth on learning what she thought of herself instead.

She sought acceptance from what others said about her. She believed in her heart that her self-esteem came from their approval of her.

She didn’t know that her sassy sense of humour was a mask. She didn’t know that her confidence was falsely attributed to the value others placed on her.

She was told to grow a pair {of balls} and to stop relying on others. She didn’t know how to rely on herself.

And then one day, an older woman told her to push her shoulders back, lift her chin, put her hands on her hips, legs widened in a superhero pose and last, and most importantly, to stick her tits out for they are all the balls she needs.

She was me ten years ago.

Ever since this pivotal conversation, I’ve looked at the world through the lens of what I think, questioning always, why is this important to me?

The blows to my confidence bounce off my chest because my heart is protected and my spine is strong.