A Feminist is someone who advocates social, political, legal, economic rights for women equal to men.
To advocate is to speak or write in favor of…to plead publically for and in support of.
Do I think of myself as a feminist?
Not necessarily. I am for the rights of all people. I am a woman. I try to be a strong woman who makes decisions for herself, who takes risks and makes bold choices but is also soft and nurturing and serving of others. I have two ideals in my head that I wish to achieve. Two opposing ideals that have both been fed to me by various external factors and I have adopted what I believe is my own sense of self and what I want to portray to my children, my peers, my family. But it is undeniable the strength of the woman’s voice when it is joined by others of the same. It is overwhelming and inspiring and easy to get lost within it.
I am a dreamer. I am a romantic. I’ve always been fascinated with women vs. men roles especially in a sexual context. The idea of giving yourself fully to someone is appealing to me but certainly creates an imbalance that is uncomfortable and basically invites an inappropriate relationship in a world in which we look for equal rights and opportunities.
That being said, after all that has occurred over the last week, the emotional rollercoaster I can’t seem to get off of; I find my feminist voice speaking up. I wouldn’t say that I have changed per say, but perhaps I have just reached my limitations. I don’t want to spend the rest of my days advocating for women, I have no interest in attending women only events and speaking of our political status in length. But I also don’t want my girls growing up afraid of making strong choices that might make them undesirable either in the workforce or socially. I fear for the development of their self image, and their voice as they try to navigate their way through a world that elects an egotistic, misogynistic, racist, and extremist in one of the most powerful positions in the modern world. I believe that I can have a voice in a man’s world when I want to…and I want them to not only believe it but exercise it even more so than I have.
Besides the obvious advantage when it comes to physical strength and deeper, more demanding voices; we women have skills that they do not seem to have access to. We can adapt. We are given only three lemons for a center piece and we figure out how to make that beautiful. We are pleasers and can create happiness in a world of chaos. We can serve and comfort as well as lead and build and create. I’m not saying we are better but I am saying we are just as present. I’m saying that without us many men would have tennis elbow, limited and possibly unhealthy diets, and a lack of beauty, mystery and peace. This of course is just a generalization. There are many men who do just fine without us…and there are many women who lack in the qualities that I mentioned above. And that too keeps the balance, the equality among us.
I am a privileged white woman with 2 children living on the outskirts of a wealthier area in Waterloo. I really, in the end have very little to complain about. But this is my truth. This is what my heart holds in this current state of…craziness. And I have a voice, a body and a mind.