In an earlier post I discussed my love of self-help books. Books are incredible things that are able to give us experiences, knowledge, and wisdom straight from the author's mind. Each word and idea chosen to appeal to the larger audience. A good book should inform or entertain and the best do both. I have chosen lately to focus on books for women's empowerment. My last read was Women Who Run With the Wolves and it touched my heart deeply.
Often in life the hardships that women face each day have been brushed aside as unimportant. The women that take a stand or even mention our struggles are labeled as crazy feminists; extreme and unstable. This simply is not true. From the dawn of time women have been suppressed in many cultures. We have been stripped of our powers, our intelligence, our self-worth and told we are only as worthy as we are seen in the eyes of a man. From how we chose to decorate our bodies to how much we earn with our work, this has all been determined for us by men.
I experienced this myself growing up in the bible belt. Again and again my power has been taken away from me throughout my life. Well, no more. I have made the firm decision to take back my inner goddess powers and I have sought the council of many courageous female authors for their advice and wisdom. I can feel the divine feminine welcoming me home in a warm embrace and it is beautiful. Many that read this post rolling their eyes or label me as just another bra burning feminist, but there are other women out there that know what I mean when I say we need to take back our beautiful, magical, feminine powers.
I spent my weekend visiting my family in my hometown. It was lovely to spend time at home in the mountains over the weekend and see my family, but I can't help to revisit my younger self during my visits. I think about the child with her head in the clouds. The one that never quite fit in and fought with her restless spirit to be heard. The one that never quiet allowed herself to be domesticated. I wonder if I am making her proud with my actions today. I hope so. Sometimes I wish I could somehow meet my childhood self again just to give her a tight hug.
It was here that my first lessons about the differences between men and women. The place where my mother, grandmother, and other female relatives modeled this feminine power to me from a young age. My grandmother was the strong glue that held the family together. She was the boss of the family, always leading with a firm, no bullshit, but somehow still loving voice. I watched her, my mother, and my aunts handle everything life threw at them from a young age.
The men in my family were a different story. My uncles and grandfather sat in the living room watching TV and waiting for their food to be delivered. They didn't clean, they didn't contribute much. I can still remember my grandfather shouting from the other room for his coffee. I'm not saying that they didn't help at all, but more often than not, the women handled everything while the men sat.
I remember in my youth always feeling attached to the wilderness. I ran through the forest shirtless and covered in purple streaks from wild berries. I climbed trees barefoot and whispered my secrets to their mighty branches from above the earth. I felt at home in the forest away from others. The trees and animals were my friends. I often ran with my sister and cousins in a wild pack. Things were much simpler when we were younger.
I never thought much of playing shirtless as a child. After all, none of us girls were old enough to reach puberty yet. I wasn't even aware of what puberty was at this point in my life. I felt safe and unjudged with my pack as we ran free through the trees outside. I can remember clearly the day I was shamed for this freedom. One of my uncles was passing through outside and made a nasty comment about us being shirtless. I can still feel the tinge of embarrassment and hurt. This crushed me as we all headed back inside to clean the mud and berries smeared across our faces. We put back on our shirts in disappointment, feeling confused and sad. This is my first clear memory of being shamed for my wildness, my womanness. This definitely was not the last in my life.
There have been many times in my life that I have been shut down when expressing myself as a woman; called naïve, a dreamer, or even silly. What a silly girl for believing she can accomplish anything not within the parameters society has set for her! It's a harsh world out there for women. Every woman knows the feeling well of being mocked for an idea or action that she would not have been otherwise had she possessed different genitalia. The world tries to domesticate us little by little throughout our lives, but my wild spirit refused to be crushed. Pushed down to a whisper, maybe, but not dead.
How interesting that I would choose that book to read over the weekend. It touched me and inspired me much more than I can explain in words. I began this post yesterday without knowing that today was Women's Day. Something told me that yesterday was not the right day for my post and now I see why.
Happy International Women's Day to all of my wild women out there. Let us come together as soul sisters and not see each other as competition. We are powerful, magical even, and can accomplish anything. Take your power back! This world is in desperate need of more women that have reclaimed their power. We can change the world. And I highly suggest picking up the book Women Who Run With the Wolves if you'd like some inspiration on embracing your wild inner spirit.
To the men that may have read this post, show support for the wild women in your life. Do not try to contain or domesticate her wild spirit. Encourage her to grow and embrace her magic. Do not feel threatened by her power, take her hand and grow together.
Have a wonderful week! Sending you all love and light on this beautiful Tuesday!
*I will post my favorite books that have changed my life before the end of the week. This will be in my new members only section. By becoming a member on my site you will get exclusive articles, videos, and occasional emails when I have posted something new for the members. I won't spam you, I promise!