Good morning! It’s 8 am, and I am up writing. After I took my puppy out, made coffee, and stretched, I settled into social media land to catch up. I dug a little into these articles/blogs on Facebook that people are posting. One from Susan Speer titled “To Christy on Facebook, who doesn’t need the Women’s March” (which was amazing), and the original one by Christy arguing for women who didn’t march this last Saturday.
I dabbled in the comment section, reading arguments from people on both sides. I dipped in a little, commenting support for the ones that put themselves out there, and even tried to understand and kindly talk through it with the opposing side. It just usually ends in disbelief and disappointment.
My mind goes on a rampage.
This morning’s rant in my head over coffee went a little like this:
These women… I don’t understand these women. Not only are they a part of this powerful gender, but they have daughters, nieces, sisters, mothers. My friend was so right the other evening when she asked, “Where’s the anger??”
I remember over Christmas, a group of family friends was gathered around having drinks, laughing and carrying on. Someone brought up Trump (I swear it wasn’t me) and began talking about the “cry babies” who lost. It got dark fast when the “it was only locker room talk” argument came up. I was mostly quiet through the conversation up until that point (other than a few eye rolls and sarcastic coughs), but went louder than all of them when I calmly said, “How about the guy who beat the shit out of me when he tried to rape me?”
“I bet in the locker room he said something along the lines of women liking it a little rough, and how you have to show them their place.
Or how about the guy that actually was able to rape me by shoving his penis in me with his pajama pants on, so it ripped me a little?
I bet he said something similar to what Trump did. How he couldn’t help it, he had to have just a little taste. Something along the lines of women not really knowing what they want until you give it to them.
You guys are right, though, harmless.”
They chimed in their disapproval a little at that point via “Oh, stop.” Or “That was so inappropriate.”
What in the actual fuck. Why are the WOMEN that I consider family silencing the hurt of another one while the men do one of the following: keep eating and pretend not to hear, make a joke changing the subject, or grunt their objections by mumbling “dramatic”?
And this is a somewhat open group, considering the backgrounds of most, with a Southern scenery. They show up with love and kind hearts, with humility and an open door policy I’ve rarely seen in other places down there.
Which then makes me wince at the thought of what other girls endure in a harsher, more closed off environment with worse consequences for being honest and brave.
Locker room “banter” is just paying the check for your friends so you look good. It’s a tiny shake of the aftermath of an earthquake so intense that it shifts WHO a woman is. Her whole being is affected. Her energy, the life in her eyes, the way her soul reaches out… her light goes dim. How heartbreaking is that?!
I call it “the shift”.
If you’re an empath, you can feel it in the room as if it belongs to you. If you’re one that has only been here a short while, you’ll wonder why she’s moody or quiet these days. If you’re ancient, it’ll bring you to your knees when she walks in the room.
Why do I feel the need to apologize to these people from Christmas? Have I been so conditioned to be silent about the heavier realities, that I immediately feel guilty that I shared? Why shouldn’t my story be told, because it’s hard to hear?
When people talk with me about it, it’s sometimes met with a hug after. Like an apologetic sentiment. I don’t need hugs (although by God I’ll take them, they’re the best things in the world). I don’t need to be held or healed. I need anger. I need action. I need these women to stop following in what their mothers did, which was to cover up the scars of a lifetime of stifling, beatings, forced submission, and an array of other tactics used to quiet the wild woman.
Then there are indifferent women who also argue feminism. They say it’s the hatred of men, and that is why this outcome is so hard for all of us women to accept.
Feminism was never about hating men. It was about empowering women while extending an all inclusive hand to anyone who also wanted equality. Men were, and are, especially important to this movement. They are absolutely welcome in this war for equality and women’s rights. It was never about hating them and fighting against them. It was about inviting in and loving the ones who support us, and fighting wars against the ones who didn’t with love until they were well enough to see the truth.
How can these women sit back and watch, much less SUPPORT, Trump?
This isn’t 1950, where the Information Age was absent, and all you had to move on was what your husband and his friends said. You can see it. Hear it. Feel it.
I just want to scream, “WAKE UP!! PLEASE!! We NEED you!!”
Is it our job to try and help them, to teach them? To paint a picture of what that other side looks like? Or are we wasting our time with what looks like petty back and forth arguments over social media to women who refuse to budge? We all get shit for it if we do, but if we are silent, aren’t we a part of the problem?
Before I came to Colorado, I was a very sheltered woman. One who judged the people around me based on my belief system growing up. Anyone/anything different than me was bad. If it wasn’t within my box of (incorrect) knowledge, it meant it was unsafe. And therefore, wrong. It took a few years of learning to love myself, therapy, stepping out of my comfort zone, educating myself, making friends with what scared me, and healing through some of the strangest (yet most beautiful) avenues to really understand what had held me back.
I had been so wrong.
I wasn’t stupid, I was uneducated. I didn’t know any better.
If education and love are key, shouldn’t we speak out to the ones that are in the dark? If so, how do we do this without insulting their intelligence? How do we welcome them without judgment?
In an era when almost all communication is done in the absence of each other, we are missing a key ingredient needed for a gentle platform for change – warmth.
Right when I’m close to letting the absence of change quiet me a little, I see these amazing women. These women who are not from the Information Age. These women who lived through the Silent Era, and lived to tell the tales. The ones who still have a voice, and had one long before it was somewhat safe or brave.They are wheeled around in the crowds at protests yelling “We’re still here!”, while their daughters beam at them from the back. They are talking to me in coffee shops when they see me reading “Women Who Run With the Wolves”. They smile back at me at work, as they look around and realize I’m one of the only women working in an industry that’s run by men. They speak at rally’s, on the news, in the streets. They are the walking living proof of growth and change. You can’t deny that it’s happened, and is still happening when the proof walks among you.
These wild women are everywhere. The original ones.
They are the reason we fight. The muse for all of us learning what it means to fight with love. They are both the goddesses that presided over these wars before us, and the source of strength that continually inspires us to keep going, to pave new pathways, to fight smarter. They are the birthplace, the womb, the ether regions most of us strive to reach.
Why am I so bothered by the unaffected crowd? The indifferent ones.
Elie Wiesel said, “The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference.”
So, it was not the breeding of hatred that bothered me, as much as the absence of action – the lack of concern? I don’t disagree with that.
It also feels like something else, something more.
What was missing?
A friend once told me, “People get uncomfortable with the truth, but truth is art. It is the most precious thing we have. It’s the only way to begin transformation.”
And there it was. Staring me, and all of us who have begun to dig into the hard parts, right in the face. I found this to be both beautifully raw, and deeply hard to accept. It’s far more difficult to take an honest look at yourself, and have to admit that you are the problem. That it starts with you. Looking at other people’s faults, calling them out, is the safest bet to avoiding personal responsibility. We’ve all done this.
When I began this tedious work on myself, tearing apart the areas of my heart that had hardened so that I wouldn’t have to look deeply at them, I hated every bit of change. Any new area being picked at made me recoil in fear and shame.
After years of internal soul archeological digs, I am now in a space where the thought of being ripped open to make room for new growth makes me grin. It means the Universe is playing with me again, and I am about to be humbled in some very beautiful ways.
My point being (yes, I had one), if we can encourage these women to take that first step into the unknown, out of their familiar, the work of truth and healing can begin. Our job, then, begins with helping make a safe space for them to cross over. A space full of unconditional love. A place of rest. Imagine how tired these women are, imagine what they’ve endured, what lies they believed about themselves. It is our job now to harbor them until love bubbles over, and anger can surface.
This is where they will find the revolution.
For all of you who have been fighting, and continue to do so: thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
As for the rest of you, we are here waiting.
Claim your place in this. Own your truth.