This….. is NOT me. (Image source)

Sometimes I wish I were more feminine. Throughout my life I’ve been a tomboy – always loved sports and the outdoors, never cared for dressing up, doing the hair and makeup thing. I tend to fall into the role of “one of the guys,” and I like that role; I’m comfortable there.

But sometimes I wonder if being so much of a tomboy hurts me when it comes to relationships; if guys see me so much as one of them that no one ever considers dating me. I see a lot of couples on campus and around the city, and I can’t help wondering when I’ll have the chance to be in a good relationship – something I’ve never really had. I’m always in a relationship for the wrong reasons, or with the wrong guys. I’ve gotten so sick of that that I’ve become picky – no longer do I date just for the sake of dating somebody, anybody.

In my new life here, I can see myself slipping into my place as “one of the guys” – of the few women in the capoeira group, I’m the only one who trains seriously and who challenges the guys in the roda – and I’m questioning if that’s such a good thing, especially here in Brazil where the gender identities/roles are a little more separate and distinct than in the U.S.

But what to do about it? Wear more skirts? Waste a half hour doing my hair every morning? That’s just not me. Plus, I look ridiculous in “feminine” clothing… I remember trying on dresses for the senior formal and thinking, these muscles do not match this outfit… I look like a freakin guy in womens’ clothing.

Never before have I been very self-conscious of my body, but lately I’ve been starting to be. Guys might find my arms impressive, but certainly not attractive – ask guys what they like about a woman, and they’ll say “nice curves, nice eyes, nice smile, nice bunda,” but certainly not “biceps bigger than mine,” unless they’re the kind of guy that likes to be dominated by a woman, which, despite my forceful personality and penchant for playful violence, I’m so not into; I’d much rather submit to a guy who’s a strong, wise leader than have my way with him all the time. Anyway, I wish I could have all my strength without the cut appearance that makes people ask (or assume) that I do a lot of either weightlifting or steroids.

This rant isn’t really going anywhere. I’m not going to turn into a dolled-up girly girl anytime soon, and there are more important things to worry about than appearances and relationships (or lack thereof)… namely, how to get Nestor back for the six tesouras de costas he’s given me in the last week.