I spent yesterday trying to figure out how I wanted to participate in the various protests going on around the country on behalf of this very important day and I finally figured it out. I'm going to write this post. Because there's nothing more threatening to patriarchy than an intelligent, confident woman speaking her mind on a platform she created.
For one, women are physical beasts in the best sense of the word. I think we are so fantastically beautiful, capable and strong. The evolution we go through in a lifetime from menstruation to pregnancy to breastfeeding to menopause is absolutely phenomenal. We are capable of creating and sustaining life. MULTIPLE TIMES. And we can do it while working in fields and with men who are dangerous living in our homes and we survive. (I know sometimes we don't and we shouldn't have to no matter what, but we are still beasts). We go through all the difficulties of high school but we bleed while doing it. Sometimes I think our culture is so picky about women's looks because if we weren't objectified, do you have any idea how powerful we would be? Women work hard and do things no one else wants to do. We don't have to and shouldn't have to unless we want to but we are beasts all the same.
All the changes that our bodies make are just markers for what we've brought forth. So my boobs are saggier. They look that way because I spent nights nurturing my crying infant. Night after night after night. No, I don't need to go under general anesthesia to "correct" them. THEY'RE AMAZING. I'm so pleased with their function and their beauty. I have stretch marks. That's because my firstborn took over and crowded me out. And you know what? That kid is a force to be reckoned with. I'm happy that wherever she goes in life, I will bear the marks of being her mother. I'm proud. There is no shame in your body changing, whether it's because you brought forth life or because you grew too fast as a kid. Your body is your home and loving it might take a lot of mental work because we've been constantly told it's subpar. But it is worth the work to love it, I promise.
I know we're not just what we're capable of physically. Many women choose not to procreate or want to and are unable. That does not in any way make you less of a woman, nor are those of us who have procreated any more important or valuable. I just think the female body is the most incredible thing. And I refuse to degrade myself because in fulfilling one of its incredible capabilities, it changed. Our culture worships the 19 year old body. And my body was really nice at 19. But 35 rocks too. And I'm planning on 75 rocking as well. We are beautiful.
We are so much more than our bodies. Many women weren't born women and I don't want to overemphasize our physicality (it just happens to be really cool). I think the female spirit is very resilient. I feel like we bear more longer. And that's not to say "yeah for female suffering!" because we need to end female suffering. In a lot of ways, I think female suffering is about keeping us unaware of how incredible we are. To continue to emphasize our dependence or physical differences (notice I did not say inabilities) is to continue to be in control of us. And so we see so much female suffering in the world. We belittle, degrade, rape and abuse women. And women realizing their incredible-ness doesn't save us from oppression. We have to knock that shit down brick by brick and I'm gonna. You should too, especially on behalf of so many who can't.
One of the ways I love taking power back in my life is in my business. I work for myself. And no one can take my business from me. No one can fire me. No one can limit my income or tell me how to do my job. And I get to use my time as I see fit. I recognize that this is a huge privilege. So I don't really like "bootstraps" talk about women and economic abilities because there are so many things that women do that are not honored or properly compensated. And some women support their families in critical, non-monetary ways. Many of my friends have young children and husbands who are rarely home. So much would not work without their constant presence as the "glue." But it's something I'm really passionate about when I recruit for my business. I LOVE to help people live in a way that gives them more independence. Everyone should have more choices. I hate to see anyone backed into a corner. And if you work for yourself, even if you have an additional job with a boss, it often opens up possibilities you wouldn't otherwise have both in finance and personal development. I love empowering people to take back their life and live however they want to.
So on this very important day, I want to say, women should do whatever the hell they want to do. Women should have kids if they want to. Women should not have kids if they want to. Women should get married if they want to. Women shouldn't get married if they want to. Women should work traditional jobs if they want to. Women shouldn't work traditional jobs if they don't want to. I think women innately are more aware of how our choices affect our families and our communities at large. And I guess what I'd like to do for women everywhere today is to give you permission to make the choices you actually want to make. Live the life you want. And if that's not possible, try to find a way to get there in time. I know I say this from a place of privilege. I'm in a stable family with a supportive husband. And my kids are getting bigger. But you (women) deserve the best, the most, everything life has to offer. Don't worry about being selfish. Don't worry about taking center stage in your own life. Take it. Own it. It's already yours.