Liberation comes in all kinds of skirts.

EmmaKarin Eriksson
Emma Eriksson
Suzanne Kelly
Women Images and Realities
November 29 2007
				    Liberation Comes in all Types of Skirts
	I woke up early one morning and decided to be pretty. Not just pretty-pretty, I wanted to be girly-pink-pearly-perfumed pretty. I ate breakfast and got started on my transformation. I showered, lotion ed, shaved, scrubbed and even put my hair in curlers. I had on so  much glittery lotion and sprays it looked like I had killed tinker bell and used her blood as body wash. I went over to my underwear draw and stared at the black lacy, frilling, thonged, and leopard print panties that over flowed my drawer. After a bit of searching I finally found the cleanest whitest pair of bra and panties. If I was going to do this I was going to do it right. I obsessed in my closet over which of my outfits was the most  fresh, girlie and virginal. I settled on a while Marliyn- Monroe-”7-Year-Itch”-esque dress, so see-through it required 2 layers of slips for my scanties not to sneak out into public view. I hopped into my cowboy boots and slipped on a demure gray cardigan, I was ready to face the world in my new identity... a girl.
	It seemed almost silly as I slathered myself in eight pounds of make up and put on my pearls. How was this liberating for me? How was falling into a stereotype going to make me feel stronger as a woman? I knew the answer would come to me; I knew that throughout that day I would feel a change.
	I went to my first class not expecting anything outrageous, but I was wrong. Everyone was complimenting me on how I looked, my teachers and peers. When I went to get my morning tea at least three different males checked me out. I was noticed for once as being pretty, not as being that girl who is out of her god damned mind. On one hand I felt good, elated, and ecstatic, who doesn't love being complimented? On the other hand I was hurt, was I un-pretty every other day? Was I not attractive enough to look at when I was myself? As the day wore on the compliments and  stares become more frequent and more welcomed by me. I had decided I was okay with all the nice words and ogling from boys. Why had I suddenly switched from resentment and happiness, to just happiness? I started to feel liberated.
	For most of my life I have been “out there.” I have never been considered exquisitely  beautiful or noticeably attractive. That was due mostly to the fact that I hid myself under a cloak of pissed-off bad-girl attitude, which gave people the impression that I didn't want what they were selling, whatever it was. I was rarely looked at by the opposite sex, or complimented, it never really bothered me, I just figured they didn't understand what true beauty was. I was an anarcho-feminist and I believed everyone was beautiful and that most males didn't count as humans, which of course shielded me from feeling worthless or unlikeable by people. 
	With this new found girly-ness I realized several things. One, it doesn't hurt to look nice. It seems like a motherly thing to say, but it is true. You  take the time to look nice, people will notice. You will be respected more, you will be approached more, and most certainly praised more. As I said before, I believe true beauty comes from within, and that everyone should be respected equally, but I do not live in La-La land, I realize thats not how it works. But I have never tried the other side of the rainbow, after this project I realize how nice it is. Another thing which was brought to my attention through this act was, I like looking nice. Odd,  I know, but definitely true. When I put on that dress and those pearls I felt good! I was smiling and wanted to spin around. I was clean and I liked it! In my heart I still wanted to run home and put on some jeans and take off all this frigging eye shadow. I came to the conclusion though that, I can be myself  and be  a girlie girl. Hating stereotypes and gender norms doesn't mean I cant wear a skirt and heels one day, and then the boots and braces the next. I realized that there are always two halves which keep the other in balance, this, oddly enough, was one of them. The dirty yin, and the pretty yang.