Tag Archives: identity

Hello My Name Is: Independence

All this Women’s Rights mumbo-jumbo-social-media-rhetoric has gotten me really worked up lately. I’ve summed my emotions into “If you aren’t for it, you’re against it.” And how any woman could be against her own fundamental rights is simply beyond me.

I was in a relationship for over two years that made me feel like a beautiful, kind, caring doormat. Now listen y’all, I am a ballin’ ass girlfriend. Once you hook me and reel me in, I make it my life’s mission to keep you happy. That’s not me being submissive, it’s just what I enjoy doing. I like to see the people I love happy, therefore, I get really excited to cook a good dinner, do laundry or dishes when my man is sick or stressed out, or anything small that I know makes his day a little better. I like this aspect of myself, because I know I’ll make a damn good wife some day. (Does this paragraph make me look single?)

The problem with this mindset for me is it always takes too long to realize when I’m extremely under-appreciated. I’ve been in more than one relationship where I’ve taken a step back after the relationship ended and asked myself “What the heck was I doing there for so long?” The thing about feminism is it doesn’t mean women are superior, it means women and men are equal. So many fellow women of mine fail to see the equality they are being denied on a daily basis. If you are treating a man with kindness and respect, you deserve just that in return.

As women, I strongly believe that we should never rely on man, but especially A man, for anything. We should constantly be relying on God, and ourselves, to satisfy our needs. If you rely on a man for anything, that thing is no longer yours. That goes for your material belongings like your clothes, your car, your home, but it can also be applied to your emotions, your self-worth, your confidence.

Picture this: You fall in love with Mr. Right. He has a great job, great hair, he’s funny, charming, and takes care of you. He makes enough money to support you and even your kids once you have them. He’s generous, he buys you gifts every now and then like a new pair of shoes, he takes you to fancy dinners and tells you you’re the most perfect woman in the whole world. He tells you he loves you and you trust him. He gives you a big ole’ diamond. Sounds dreamy, right? Sign me up!

So naturally, you get married, you quit your job and start popping out babies. You get fat, you lose your confidence because he stops appreciating you. He takes you and everything you do for granted and you resent him for having to stay home all day with the kids. You fight a lot because you’ve lost your self-worth and want more out of life than talking to toddlers all day. Then one day, he cheats on you. He decides to leave you for the other woman. I don’t know how you find out but you do, because you are woman. Your life crumbles before your eyes. Literally. He. Owns. Everything. Your house and everything in it. Your car. Your insurance. Your clothes and shoes and bags and jewelry. Your body. Your mind. The groceries in your refrigerator that you were going to use to cook him dinner! 

Custody of the children (and probably a hefty settlement) aside, you are now forced to completely start over. What’s on your resume? Nothing, child care. What’s your credit score? Nada, nothing in your name. I would say it’s not your fault, but it totally is. Where did you lose your independence? When did you forget that you are a perfect and beautiful creation of God’s that deserves happiness and fulfillment? When did you forget that you have a purpose for your life here on earth? A lot of women will say that being a mother is their purpose, and I am 100% on board with that. But please, I am begging you, do not give up your independence in exchange for motherhood. That child needs a strong, unwavering woman to teach them how to be the best version of themselves.

When I see women marrying (or dating) for money it makes me want to crawl out of my skin and force my hands around her neck. You are submitting in the worst possible way! You are giving that man complete control over who you are and what defines you. Not to mention, you should never waste your time dating or marrying someone who you could do without. Call me a romantic but, I believe there is someone out there for everyone. Yes, a soul mate! And that soul mate wasn’t put there so you could use them for their money, their money should have ZERO influence on your feelings for them. If their money or worth has ANY influence on why you’re with them, you need to reevaluate your life, my dear! And your identity, and motives, and passions. Who the hell are you, anyways?

The moral of this rant is…Don’t ever let a man control you. Whether he does that with money or manipulation, you are your own person and should ALWAYS be your own person. Don’t forget to take that step back every once in a while and ask yourself if you are being treated equally and with respect. And if the answer is ever anything besides “YES PRAISE JESUS FOR THIS AMAZING SPECIMEN OF A MAN,” get the eff outta there!

 

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Me, Myself, and I

I want to be different.

I want to be myself. 

 

A rendition of a particular quote runs through my mind every so often: We are all just an automat of characters. All reading from the same dog-eared script.

Have you ever been walking down the street, or standing in a line with a bunch of other people, all waiting for the same thing or walking in the same direction, and feel as though you’re amidst cattle? Sometimes I have to choke back a laugh, because I feel utterly (see what I did there) ridiculous. My dad will actually “moo” when he is put in this situation, which makes it much less frustrating.

Before I digress, the actual quote (because I loathe misquoting) is by Gillian Flynn, author of Gone Girl. And it’s important:

“I don’t know that we are actually human at this point, those of us who are like most of us, who grew up with TV and movies and now the Internet. If we are betrayed, we know the words to say; when a loved one dies, we know the words to say. If we want to play the stud or the smart-ass or the fool, we know the words to say. We are all working from the same dog-eared script. 

It is a very difficult era in which to be a person, just a real, actual person, instead of a collection of personality traits selected from an endless Automat of characters.”

Spending time alone is surely an eye-opening experience. And possibly my eyes have just opened after many years of being some strange mixture of hating solitude and being terrified of commitment. Being single forces you to spend time with yourself, lots and lots of alone time. Picking apart your thoughts, asking yourself questions, deciding how you honestly want to spend your time. When there’s someone else contributing, you don’t have to always or fully make each decision on your own. Does that make life easier? Probably. Does it make it better? Doubtful.

I feel that majority of my days I spend trapped inside a shell of what society expects of me. I work a 9-5, I wear my make up and hair and clothes in a professional manner, I say certain phrases like, “How can I help you?,” “Have a great afternoon!,” and “Thank you for calling!” Even when I’m feeling negative the worst I’ll say is,”that’s ridiculous.” Even with my friends I base my identity on how my friends view me. We all act differently depending on the people surrounding us and the situation we are in. But what if we were ourselves 100% of the time?

On dates I find myself answering questions solely based on what I think a “cool girl” would say or what I think that particular guy would be into. I dress to look skinnier and try to sit on their right because I think my left side is my good side. I try not to laugh too hard because I hate how my mouth looks. How exhausting! How tiring and worthless it is to continuously pretend to be someone you’re not.

How dull of a life you lead if all you do is follow the crowd. Why would we ever want to be like anyone else when we can so comfortably be?

Finding yourself is a long process. You don’t wake up one day and say, “there I am! Now I can live my life.” Finding who you truly are comes from a long series of situations and decisions that gradually mold you from the inside out. I constantly search for a man to validate me. But being alone forces you re-learn how to be yourself, by yourself, without depending on anyone or anything else to define you. You have to sit with your thoughts and question them. Reflect on them and make sure they are YOUR thoughts and YOUR words before they are spoken.

Speak your mind.
Do you want you want.
Have faith in yourself.

I’m not even close, but I can imagine that feeling of pure confidence and independence must be the most amazing feeling in the world.

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” –Psalm 139:14

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