Sometime in December 2014, I had a date with a guy, who would eventually become my boyfriend for a little while. We were going for a wedding and I had nothing to wear—literally no aso-ebi slaying outfit to put on. I was in full panic mode until I called my mum and my elder sister. Together they rustled up a fantastic outfit for me. Anyone who saw me that day would never have guessed that except for the shoes and the underwear I had on, nothing was mine.
I put on a bit of makeup but I didn’t look good enough (at least I didn’t think so). I cleaned and reapplied so many times that at the end of the day I just gave up and went to meet my date; I had already kept him waiting for a while. I remember that day clearly, he was all smiles when he saw me coming down the stairs but I was full of doubts. What if’s, what about’s. I didn’t look good enough. Everyone spoke about how nice I looked that day but I just couldn’t accept that I looked good with makeup that was less than ‘on fleek’ and clothes that didn’t look like they were made for me.
I took a lot of pictures with his phone (I had to change my dp! I was going on a date) and I deleted most because I didn’t look nice—I would have deleted all but he was upset that I would delete the pictures that he felt were nice. So I stopped, but the insecurities didn’t stop.
As impeccable as my date was, I didn’t have fun. Not because he wasn’t amazing or anything but because I could count so many things that were wrong with me; I was thinking of how big the wrapper was because it was my mum’s and I was wondering if the Buba really looked nice on me since it was my little sisters.
Dancing wasn’t even an option; I was too worried about how stiff I will look to everyone. The only time I danced in public was when I was with my friends. It was easy to hide among them as they are really good dancers, it is always a blast with them. For the while, we were in conversation and just being us, I forget my insecurities and flaws.
I was scrolling through my library yesterday and I came across one of the pictures from that wedding. I had to do a double-take; I mean I didn’t realise how beautiful I looked. Looking back, all the insecurities and fault finding robbed me of having fun and turning up at that wedding.
Low self-esteem can take a lot from you if you allow it. It not only takes your confidence, it takes the fun out of life. It takes away years and happy memories from you. It cripples you till you lack the capacity to think and stand on your own
My name is Adebanke and I refuse to lose to my demons.