Stay Woke— especially when it comes to yourself. In the words of Queen Bey herself, “a winner don’t quit on themselves.” This is a lesson that I wanted Paige, the main character from While He’s Sleepin’ She’s Creepin’, to learn sooner than later. Although she was beautiful, smart, and loyal to her man, Paige was a full-figured woman who clearly didn’t know her worth because she put up with so much disrespect from the one person who was supposed to have her back no matter what. He disrespected her in every way imaginable. But for me, it was the cringe-worthy way he spoke to her that set me off. I mean, could you imagine putting up with a man saying this to you?
Didn’t think so. Even though a man has never disrespected me in this manner, I could relate to Paige because as a black woman, there are many times I feel inadequate—especially in the looks department. Of course, I think society plays a huge role in this, but I often times feel as though black men have the same sentiments as Sy’Heir (Paige’s trifling boyfriend). Read how he describes his jump off:
Look at that.
Perky B cups - ain’t got it
Flat, toned belly - ain’t got it
Plump, round ass - ain’t got it
Natural, long, coal-black curly hair- ain’t got it
Sleek Baby hairs - ain’t got it
Light right skin tone - ain’t got it
Biracial - ain’t
It’s easy to subscribe to these beliefs and to believe you’re less than when you don’t fit the description of what has been traditionally deemed as attractive. I was proud to say, however, that although homebody was clearly sleepin’ on her, she didn’t quit on herself. She bossed up and began to act like the queen she was. Here’s how.
1.) Maintain positive relationships with people who will lift you up.
Nori was Paige’s bestie, and she always wanted the best for her. Because of that, she hated Sy’Heir and told her every opportunity she got. She supported Paige’s decision to stay when she wasn’t quite ready to leave, but Nori reminded Paige of her worth every step of the way.
2.) Improve your physical health.
Paige mentioned a few times throughout the story that she wanted to get in better physical shape, and anyone who’s struggling with self-esteem should consider getting into better shape—not for superficial reasons—but because specific ‘feel good’ endorphins literally help you feel better, increased physical activity fights off those unwanted feelings of anxiety and depression which many of those with low self-esteem suffer from.
3.) Become assertive and learn to say no.
When a woman’s fed up... whew!
There came a time when Paige had had enough of the lies, cheating, belittling, and physical abuse. She let that man go, and I can’t say that I didn’t enjoy the scene where she kicked his a$$...literally.
If you find yourself suffering from low self-esteem, try taking a page outta Paige’s book and try one of the strategies she implemented in your life. Even if they are sleepin’ on you, it’s your job to wake ‘em up.
To read While He's Sleepin' She's Creepin' by T'Ann Marie, click the following link: