“My daughter is fat and black.
She doesn’t look like her siblings.
Even her brothers look nicer than she does.”
I’ve been taught to hate my body ever since I was young.
“You’re fat, black, and you have eyes as small as buttons.”
“Look at all the other girls. You’ll never get married.”
I am olive-skinned.
There’s nothing special about my features; I look like any other Egyptian.
I have oily skin.
I’ve had acne since I was a teenager,
And I didnt know how to deal with it.
I was bullied at school a lot as a kid.
“Wash your face! You look dirty.”
“You look like so and so, but she looks cleaner than you!”
These are the kinds of things I would hear as a kid from my colleagues and sometimes even my own family.
Mama likes to make remarks about everything:
“Why do you look like that?”
“Why do you look pale?”
“Why are there dark circles under your eyes?”
“Why are there dark spots around your mouth?”
“Why are you eating like that?”
“Why are your fingers so long?”
I attended university outside of my governorate.
I used to brush my hair in the bathroom,
Because I didn't want any of the other girls to bother me.
I started realizing there were a lot of people like me,
When I started being active on social media.
These girls weren’t ashamed of their hair.
They went out in public with their curly hair.
I even read articles about the experiences of girls with curly hair.
It made me ask myself if my hair was something to be embarrassed about.
Why was I scared?
These stories gave me the courage to accept my hair as is.