Illustrations by Trisha Carpena
Miley Cyrus’ song “The Climb” has never sounded more true than when you’re actually climbing. It's my climbing jam, along with a few One Direction songs in my playlist. Now while Miley's song can be interpreted overcoming an obstacle in life or a journey but to me, the song is about literally climbing a mountain and here are my stories.
Just recently I climbed Mt. Tibig and going up, it was really steep early on which made it even more tiring to climb up the rest of the way. Somewhere along the halfway point, there was a clearing and our guide pointed out the summit and I thought, "oh my god, I'm gonna die. That's too far. I'm never going to make it there alive" But guess what? An hour later, I made it. Every climb I do, I've heard myself go: "I can't do this" "I think I'm dying" "I can't believe I agreed to do this. Again."
Now I'm not saying I'm a pro or anything like that because I'm not. My first climb was Mt. Pinatubo in 2009. Back then I didn't know the extent of what we were going to do. I thought it would be an easy climb. It wasn't. My next climb after that was February of this year. Even now, 5 years later, no climb is an easy climb. My only form of exercise is going up and down the stairs in my house to eat my meals. But you don't need to be fit to climb a mountain. My dad always tells me whenever we climb, "it's all in the mind." If you think in your mind that you'll make it, you will.
The Philippines is full of places to explore if you know what you're looking for. This year, my cousins and I promised ourselves we'd climb one mountain every month. And so far, we've stayed true to that promise. Before our climbs, we research mountains we'd want to go to and plan our trip going there. Usually our climbs would be 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 hours depending on a mountain's difficulty and since we're beginners, we take mountains that are at most 4/10. (Find out more at www.pinoymountaineer.com)
The most rewarding and my favorite thing about mountain climbing for me is seeing the view at the summit. I usually take a minute to rest after reaching the summit and just take in the view in front of me. I always get awed by nature’s beauty. I’d think that just because I’d be climbing a mountain in the same area of another one, the view would be different but no, they’re not. It’s always different to me. Each mountain has its own quirks like one would have this amazing view of a lake or another I’d see a mountain range going as far my eyes can see. I love feeling like I’ve gone into a different world where nothing about the real world bothers me just like how I feel whenever I read my books. I'm unplugged, just me and the trees and the view around.
Peace out and keep the faith.
- Ana Matti
Illustrations by Trisha Carpena
“Free The Nipple is a film, an equality movement, and a mission to empower women across the world. We stand against female oppression and censorship, both in the United States and around the globe”
This radical campaign was created in 2014 by Lina Esco as a way to fight the patriarchal views of women and women’s bodies by society, especially through media. It is without question that there is an existing double standard between men and women, and objectifying as well as degrading the female anatomy only makes society conditioned to think that this form of censorship is okay.
The most common assumption about Free The Nipple is that it is only about accepting public nudity; well yes, that is part of it, but some people fail to realize that it is more than just being able to show your breasts to the world. It is about having the choice over your own body. It is about letting mothers breastfeed their infants in public places. It is about treating women better than before and equal to how society treats men.
The way we view women’s breasts needs to be changed in order for society to be one step closer to achieving total gender equality. The over sexualization of women’s bodies contributes to why we don’t view our own biological attributes as natural; instead we are offended and ashamed. This is because of the influence of the patriarchal society. When girls flaunt their bodies, they are slut-shamed and deemed to be “attention whores”, but when men show theirs, and especially if they are seen as physically attractive, they’re praised. Why is that? Why do we prefer one nipple over the other? Why is it too hard for society to accept all types of bodies?
This is exactly what Lina Esco wants us to fight for. If we cannot even view a woman’s body as natural, how can we expect a world without sexism in the future? We need to deal with the little issues because if society becomes more open-minded about such campaigns as Free The Nipple, then there is a high chance that they will start becoming more open-minded about other feminist advocacies as well. This is also why we consider Lina as our girl of the month, because without this movement, a big number of people wouldn’t come to the realization that it is important to support and fight for a woman’s right over her own body.
Not to mention, the film [also directed by Lina Esco herself] itself perfectly sums up what she and the rest of the people behind Free The Nipple want to address.
It is true that society is so used to seeing inhumane and violent acts to the point where it is practically normalized, yet a woman’s body is the one perceived as offensive by most people. It’s disappointing that society would rather watch all these other films and shows that dignify violence than to see a woman’s perfectly natural body in person.
Women have been fighting for their rights for centuries, it is time to realize that this modern patriarchal world would crumble if we don’t let women become as free as men. So we thank Lina Esco for her efforts in wanting to attain an equal society.
Check out Lina Esco: Twitter | Instagram
Check out Free the Nipple: Website | Instagram | Twitter
- Reign Gonzales
illustration by Trisha Carpena
click photos for sources
Everyday girls with not so everyday lives and weekly inspirations for the soul.