There has been quite a bit going on politically regarding women’s health and rights. I would like to tell you all about the jams I have made and the infused vodkas and all sorts of cute, easy and fun things. But there is so much that I want to write about and I will save all of the cute stuff for later, ok maybe I can make this kind of cute. Hella pics.
Here is what I think. As women we are brought up in a culture that thrives on our insecurity. It tells us that we aren’t good enough, pretty enough, smart enough. We read magazine articles and see images that craft what we should be. But we are too emotional, unstable, and crazy. We can’t do certain things because of our sex and we are only as worthy as our sex. It pins us against the world, but the deeper more sobering reality is that it pins us against each other. Competition and judgement aren’t part of our dispossession, they are symptoms of a society that makes women feel that they have to prove their worth. Women competing or judging other women is too often considered a norm in workplaces and in social situations. This is a result of a society that has pushed women down repeatedly and denied their true strengths. I really believe that genuine power and true beauty are a threat to societal social norms. If you make women feel like they are inferior and their worth can only come about through their obtaining the unobtainable they more easily manipulated and ego driven. Thus more easy to control. Validation through social acceptance creates a state of chaos and is at the root of how women are trained to define themselves. In my opinion the most direct attack on women is through other women. This isn’t the most powerful or pervasive but the most direct. We do this through the way we judge them, be-friend them, teach them, talk to them, raise them. And we do this through the ways in which we support them or choose not to.
The political attacks that have fallen upon women and families are an example of using women bodies as a tool. Their bodies can be manipulated and disputed, debated, discussed and ridiculed. They can be judged and demonized for what they are, or aren’t and all of this is through the eyes of someone else.
Often, I hear women say how these issues don’t affect them. Literally, it doesn’t affect them; like, “this isn’t my problem and I have enough problems, thank you very much.” And to that I want to say a million things, one of them is I understand that life is hard and that your life in particular might be very hard right now. But also the greatest movement, in my opinion, out of your own personal problems or struggles is to see yourself in a greater context. That is to see how you (little you) fits into this bigger world and the bigger (YOU).
I think this is our time to stand together as women and not let society define what that means for us.
Ok so really men have no business saying what is right for a woman. I am serious.
3. I use to be very fearful of getting involved in anything. I thought this isn’t my fight..” after spending time in Armenia and seeing dynamics of power differently, I feel differently. I understand that those who can use their power and influence to bring about freedom for others, should and must.
I use to also hate flawed institutions and government. Being informed wasn’t particularly interesting because the more I learned, the more I felt disconnected from a society that didn’t represent me. Many people feel that their government doesn’t represent them and many people don’t vote because they think that all of the candidates are all the same and don’t represent THEM. But I see how vastly different the candidates are and how close elections can be.
I use to think, what can one person do? There is SO MUCH wrong with society. As I became more informed, involved and curious, I saw the power in individuals. One person is more than one person, that person is part of a community, family and social structure. Their one voice hold with it the power of their collective shared values and their experiences. Their one voice has the ability to motivate and inspire others and in that choir of voices there is the power to shake up the foundation of society.
It is all of our roles and responsibility to do what we can with our time, actions and resources to make this world better, not worse.
Better: is expansive; it allows for greater opportunities, freedoms, and resources. It is fluid and doesn’t view the world as white or black but sees the complexity, and range, of human experiences. It meets people where they are, and yet invites them to more fully express everything that they already are. It isn’t about limitations or denial, or about what is right or wrong. It is acceptances of what is and growth through learning. Better is involvement and action and connection to those around you. Maybe this fight doesn’t affect you but if it did you would want your friends, community, and government to have your back and support you in whatever decision you thought was right for you at that time so maybe, just maybe, it affects us all.