23 Promises Every Girl Should Make To Herself And Keep Forever
When you are young, you learn a very important, very sexist lesson. You learn that things are different for boys and girls. You learn that things are different for men and women. You learn that things are different for moms and dads.
You learn that the rules are rewritten, the expectations redirected. You learn that there are good things and bad things that come with being a man; you learn that there are good and bad things that come with being a woman.
You learn that women are braver than what men, society and the global community often give them credit for. You learn that your body is viewed through different lenses by different people.
You learn that you’re expected to apologize, even when you’re not wrong, and you learn that sometimes you are just to be seen and not heard.
You learn that life is not always fair and that it is less important to be smart and driven and talented and more important to be pretty and ditzy and to smile wide with fresh white teeth and glossy, gooey lips.
And then somewhere along the way, if by choice or if by experience, you learn that most things society has bothered to teach you are, fortunately, wrong.
You learn that it is not the color of your hair that matters, but the vibrancy of your intellect. You learn that it’s not your bust size that matters, but your brain power.
You learn that yes, those child-bearing hips will one day make great babies and that you have a power no man will ever understand or steal. You have the power to make another human life. (Granted, you do get a little help, but still.)
When you learn that the doctrines that society sits so comfortably upon are wrong, you feel empowered, invigorated, righted beyond belief. You feel alive and strong and hungry.
You feel taller and faster and braver. You feel womanly and feminine and intimate and vulnerable. You finally feel like you should have, all those years ago, long before you ever learned that there were differences woven into the world, that there were paths that were separated just by sexual orientation.
And so you start making promises. Promises to carry you through the highs and the lows, the summers and the winters, the goods and the bads. You make promises not to apologize, not to be silenced, not to be withered into submission just because you’re a woman.
You promise, instead, to fight back, fight harder, to laugh louder and longer and slap sexism back into its seat whenever it dares to stand against you. You promise to be a force to be reckoned with — because you are a force to be reckoned with.
You make promises to be more accepting, more appreciative. You make promises not to make the same mistakes again, but to at least make them once – so at some point, you’ll know better than to make them again.
You make promises because you deserve to be hopeful.
You deserve to be optimistic. You deserve to be everything that you want. You deserve to be happy, to be full, to be fed and loved and clothed and sad and scared and excited and terrified.
You make promises because you believe that, yes, something this rich can stay fresh, that something this loved can stay alive, that something this strong can weather the storm.
So to the girls who don’t yet know that there are differences in this world — to the ones who are learning, slowly, that there are certain paths we’re told not to walk, to the ones who are too scared to fight back against the walls keeping them from the greener grass on the other side: Don’t hold back, don’t feel confined to the box you’re currently standing in; don’t feel limited to the rules people tell you to follow; don’t feel like you’re not worth more.
You are. You are ambition, you are power, you are sugar and rain and strong coffee and cheap cigarettes.
You are determination, you are beautiful, you are ice when the world needs cooling and heat when the winds roll in.
You are honey and cinnamon. You are poise and you are praise. You are the makers of promises, the dreamers of dreams.
So dream. Promise. And do it unapologetically because you are everything that is exciting and intoxicating about tomorrow. You are every reason to hope.
1. I promise to love this body, through good and bad, to respect it, to treat it with kindness and to feed it with appreciation always.
2. I promise to stop and smell the roses – to savor how I look and feel today and to accept that it’s never going to get better than this moment, right now, right here.
3. I promise never to be foolish enough to believe that there is any reason to be anyone other than me.
4. I promise to date the Wrong Guy, the Right Guy, the Mr. Right Now, the Mr. He’s-Just-Not-That-Into-Me Guy. I promise to date the guys who make my heart feel full of gladness and the guys who sometimes treat me wrong.
Then, I promise to know better and stick the douchey guys on the bench.
5. I promise to make mistakes – lots of mistakes, to go eagerly down the wrong road, to venture way off course. I promise not to play it safe.
6. And I promise to forgive myself wholeheartedly. I promise not to punish myself forever for things I did when I was sad, when I was happy, when I was young, when I was drunk, when I was lost on side street after side street in a European country where I didn’t even speak the language.
7. I promise never to keep my mouth shut, to speak up when I know my voice needs to be heard, to shout louder when it’s ignored. I promise not to apologize for how I feel, for what I believe in, for what I stand for.
I promise never to offer an apology just because it’s easy or expected or even encouraged.
8. I promise – today, tomorrow and every day – to put myself first, to chase after the things I want and never to settle for anything less than I know I deserve.
9. I promise never to confuse the man who loves me for my body and the man who loves me for my mind – and I promise never to settle for a man who doesn’t love me for both.
10. I promise to value my brain. To feed it well, with words and songs and lectures and books and movies and recipes and birthdays. I promise to cultivate and nurture it. To watch it grow strong.
11. I promise to pay it forward, to do what other women have done for me to other women.
12. I promise to give everyone a chance, even though it might be terrifying and risky and stupid and scary. I promise to step outside my comfort zone often.
13. I promise to know that being a woman always is enough. I promise never to feel limited or objectified or to feel that my body is the only thing people are interested in.
14. I promise to call my parents, even though I only have five minutes to talk and even though I’m about to lose service because the subway is beginning its slow dive underground.
I promise to ask them how they’re feeling, to miss them, to love them and to argue with them, to disagree with them and always, always to look after them.
15. I promise to drink too much, to sleep too late, to dance too hard, to stretch too long, to sing too loud and to eat too many nachos every time I have the chance.
16. I promise to be proud of how far I’ve come – even though I’m still going. I promise to look back not with pity or vengeance, but with gratitude. I’ve made it this far.
17. I promise to forgive and not to forget, to let time heal the wounds and to carry what I have learned so far with me as I go forward. I promise not to let that sadness drag me down.
I promise not to wish ill on past lovers. I promise to send them light, to let them go — and to move forward.
18. I promise to cry my eyes out each time my heart is broken, each time my emotions are wronged, each time it feels like I’ve singed every artery capable of love.
I promise to let myself have the time, space and Netflix it needs to grieve. And I promise not to apologize for it.
19. I promise to put on the too-high heels, the too-bright red lipstick and the too-short dress and not to mistake my femininity with “asking for it” or “sluttiness.”
I promise to celebrate these curves, this ass, this shape, these boobs, this skin-baring midriff because they’re mine.
20. I promise to be patient when things don’t go my way – to step back and realize that it’s all a process, and a journey like this doesn’t come together all at once, but piece by piece.
21. I promise to allow myself the opportunity to be jealous. To sit with it and to ask it questions but never to be governed by it. I promise to see it as room to grow and not the concrete tied to my ankles, holding me down.
22. I promise to make plans for tomorrow and today and for three weeks from now. I promise never to stop planning, always to want something more, always to plan for something greater and bigger and more exciting than the things I know today.
23. I promise to love. Always. To give it and to receive it, even when the giver isn’t worthy and when I don’t think I am, either. I promise to let it flow freely from me because it is the one thing that is bigger than I am – that will always be bigger than I am.
I promise to love even though it is the single most terrifying act any of us will ever do. I promise to give love and to take love when I need it least and when I need it most.
Note: I will accept the truth even
I will accept the truth even if it hurts so much. I will cry if I needed to, just to let things out. Diin sa imo ang gusto mo, treat me as your baby sister, your friend or more than friend? Ky whatever you’re decision I will respect it. But your actions is beyond treating me as your baby sister or friend. Ky feeling ko more than friends. That’s why I’m confused with that. Sometimes I got a doubtful feeling that you might be playing with my feelings that slowly grows within. I don’t know what you want but I know what I wanted and that’s spending more time with you. Maybe our mistake is we do intimate things like hugging and kissing. I allowed you to do that to me because I like you, I like you. No words can explain but I like you. I know you love me and I’m really flattered to hear those words from you and I felt really happy that someone is actually taking care and loving me for real. And it felt so good that I’m praying it would last forever. Actually I could be that someone who will love you and take care of you if you let me, because you deserve to be treated that. I understand if you don’t want committment or any label into our relationship for now. I know you’re scared because things are fast but we could start again. If you will give another chance for us, but this time to let things slow down. We could always see each other to have friendly dates to make things slow. I admit that I really enjoyed listening to your stories, meeting your friends and really I just enjoyed being with you. And I admit since sa tanan nga lalaki ikaw lng gd ang nagpa feel sa akon sng real hug kg kiss, and it feels good that someone is actually taking care of me. I’m not in a hurry since I want to get to know you more. If you need more time to think, I will give that to you. If you need for me to give you space or distance for you to think over what you really want then I will give that to you. Take time to think. I could wait. I went out with you because I know you’re worth it, and honestly you are the only guy I’m seeing now. Moments with you are wonderful, the best days I had. And honestly you deserve my first kiss but I will not give that to you for now baka it will make things more complicated and confused for you. I will only give that to you if ready kna or you know what you want. If you feel you don’t deserve it then it’s ok. Atleast you’ve been honest to me. Wala ta ka gina reject because I know you’re worth it. If you want to stop this just tell me right away para hindi ako ma hurt gid nga grabe. Always remember whatever your choice I will respect it. You only met someone like me once, take the chance to make things right.