On Monday I celebrated another year on Planet Earth. During my Festival of Kylie, I spent time with some of my nearest and dearest which always brings me great joy.
As part of the Festival, two of my dearest friends took charge and whisked me away for a day in the mountains – good food, great conversation, excellent scenery, fabulous company.
I met these two gorgeous women when our kids were in preschool, many years ago now. They are part of a tribe of Wonderful Warrior Women I am blessed to have in my life. Over the years we have laughed and cried together; we have celebrated our triumphs, problem solved our various family ups and downs and supported each other through those moments of sadness that touch us all. The loss of a parent, the trials of raising children, the odd health crisis, the joys of growing older. All of this is usually done with a high level of laughter, the odd glass of wine and liberal use of that very adaptable word, fuck.
We have retained over the years, a light-hearted banter between us over what it means to be a feminist. As the mother of two strong, independent, feisty, grounded young women, I am a loud and proud feminist. Being a feminist means we are free to exercise our choice and its thanks to our sisters who have gone before us, that we have them. We can work, stay at home, be a mum, choose not to have children, stay single, get married (although not in Australia if your partner happens to have the same gender as you but we’ll leave that for another post…..)
No longer do we need to adopt the passive aggressive behaviours of the 1950s housewife, forced to adopt this approach given society demanded she resign the moment she signed the marriage certificate. It was the only way she could get anything done in the patriarchal, competitive world culture that was prevalent then and sadly, still exists today.
Yet we continue to see women tearing down other women – at work, at play. I have personally experienced this so many times. Women who feel that to get ahead they must trample the competition. Women who scheme and connive and back stab and bitch; women who continue to try and be second class men, nay human beings, instead of first class women.
Having been exposed to these behaviours, I had to acknowledge my own reactions to this and recognize when I was being triggered. The best example I have is the tale of how I made a solid friendship with another woman who I met when we were both participating in a work project for a highly competitive, male-ego driven company. When we first met, so many echoes of competitive women who had torn me down in the past were ringing in my ears. My triggers were flying out of orbit. Thankfully, I recognised them, let my barriers down and lo and behold was blessed with a friendship that has only grown in depth and strength.
Gratefully armed with the wisdom gained through this experience, I continued my path of personal transformation which has rewarded me with abundance and soul enriching experiences. On this path I have met other soul sisters and we have found each other in some fascinating places:
On the roof of Notre Dame In a hamman in Morocco Over an espresso in Lucca
Everywhere I went, I met women who were living life to the fullest and learning more about themselves so that they could give back to the world they were part of. I met so many of them that I became a little blasé about the continuing struggle.
Imagine my despair when Em Rusciano felt the need to make a public statement over archaic comments made by Miranda Devine on radio this week. I felt her pain once again as she defended her rights as a woman in this day and age against, god help us, another woman.
For fuckssake people, we are all in this together.
I recall the preschool teacher, Sr Mary, making an observation way back when. She casually mentioned that there were a lot more boys than girls coming through the school at that time.
“Look out, we’re heading for another war” was her only other remark, adding that it always happens when boys outnumber girls in the birth rates.
I have no idea if there is any evidence to support this contention and it is not my intent to debate this with this blog.
What I do believe, with all my heart, is that now more than ever, in this hate filled world that the mostly male heads of state are driving, we need to embrace the feminine goddess and bring all that is good and wise about being a woman to the forefront.
Our world needs some nurturing, some kindness, the feminine divine in all her luscious glory.
Our world needs some soul food and beauty and enrichment.
Our world needs Wonderful Warrior Women who will fight for it and men who continue to support them.
And most importantly, it needs women that lift and support each other.