Remembering our early pubescent days, I and my cousin Eva always used to play with our dolls. Her doll was tanned and my doll was fair.
I never liked her doll as she looked like me, and she never admired mine as it looked like her. I was an eminent child and an eye candy for everyone.
My relatives used to praise my beauty in gatherings and I bestowed many expensive toys as if I was a daughter of a barrister, but Eva was treated as an ordinary child with no special treatments, appraisals and toys.
However, I felt that Eva and everyone else was much more beauteous and enticing than me because they were much fairer than me in complexion. In our early vicenarian days we both got married. She got settled in the same city but my fate made me move from West coast towards East coast to get settled with my husband where my fate and my life both changed completely.
I was no more a different person as I used to be back in Florida. I was no more eminent for anybody here in Calicut as everyone had same complexion as mine.
I remember spending a larger time of my life in achieving a fairer complexion by using harmful creams full of mercury, trying out DIYs that would rash and irritate my skin.
In contrast, Eva and girls from the west rubbed harmful oils and melanin infused creams on their faces and bodies in order to be brown and tanned.
I remember avoiding going out in afternoons and I was irrationally so dumb that I missed many mornings and their dawn choruses thinking that the sun’s twilight could also make my complexion dark whereas people in the West used to lay all day in the harsh UV sun and burn to a crisp, so that after few days the red and extremely painful burn would die down and would eventually leave a brown tan. We feared that our complexion would keep propagating infinitely far away in all of our generations, which obviously happened.
Today after spending eighty-three years of my life when I see my grand-daughter look blanched and white similar to Eva, I feel no good as Eva was blonde because of her genes but my grand-daughter makes herself blanched every month through impregnating herself with harmful whitening injections.
Inversely, my cousin’s grand-daughters are busy rubbing toxic stains dyes and impregnating synthetic melanin infused hormone injections into their skin to achieve a darker sun kissed brown look.
They do all this with the help of “Aestheticians”. I wonder why these Aestheticians even call themselves “Aestheticians?” The word aesthetician originally means “a person who appreciates beauty” not a person who “alters beauty”.
But my God, who can claim this when people themselves are agitated to get rid of what God gave them and become what God gave others.
I feel that our generation is blanched from inside, blanched or maybe burnt, like the burnt coal which is about to turn into ashes.
If we ruminate, we are not thoughtful about what we are bestowed and blessed with, maybe “we” from the beginning of generations from Eve to Eva have not learnt to cherish and regard, of what we have.
We swallowed our lives thornily in ceaseless glitches of pain and un-comfortability trying to chase a venturous mission for which we were not made for and never stood comfortable in our skin nor embraced it, and never realized that we are the envy of half of the planet residing opposite to us!
And we did this for whom?
Is a question un-answerable for me, my daughter and my grand-daughter and for Eva, her daughter and her grand-daughter and for the gross commonality for setting a norm of envying for what we do not have.
We all are murderers of the beauty we were born with. I wish there would have been no mirrors though which we could never have been able to see ourselves, and each other together and could never be able to dare to defy ourselves and discriminate the differences between us and envy upon it generation to generation.