Saturday, October 08, 2016
Today I am grateful that I am a strong woman. I have been thinking about this for a long time and the news events of the last few days tell me it’s time to fess up. I AM glad I am a strong, proud, American woman of size. So watch out!
Have I always felt strong? Nope, not hardly. But in my soul of souls I know exactly how strong I am. I know how strong you are, too! Women are amazing and sometimes I think we multi-task our way through life with such ease that we forget to cherish how amazing we really are. Yes you! And me!
Strong women raise strong children, girls or boys. My sons are strong. They married strong women. My step daughters are strong. Their husbands celebrate their strength. When I met Himself we would talk about women and their strength or lack of it. Back then I wondered if I was strong enough to endure the battles facing me. He assured me I was the strongest woman he ever met and that was one of the things that attracted him to me. Wow. A guy who is not threatened by women. That has been appealing times a lifetime! I have a lot of male friends who feel the same way.
I’ve been thinking a lot about growing up in the 50’s and 60’s and the way things were for women back then. My mom told me that when the fellas came home from WWII the women who had factory jobs had to give them up for the returning service men. Right or wrong, that’s how it was. When women were molested or raped, they were told that it was because they “dressed like they were asking for it.” It was not the fault of an abusive man, it was their fault. And they took it. They believed it. Until they didn’t. Oh happy day!
Women began to find their voices and realize that we are strong, powerful, smart and important, not just to our families or in the workplace, but also to our communities, society and our countries. We come in all shapes and sizes and should celebrate that difference, too. We have learned, through difficult times, that we deserve to be treated with respect. We do not have to put up with misogynistic, sexist bigots shaming us into feeling “less than”. We are not less than for anyone! Not for anyone. Those days are over and the world is better for it! I am better for it. You are better for it.
Women endured jail, beatings, sexual abuse and torture gaining us our rights, yet there are still some women out there willing to fork over all of their power to men. The funny thing is that when you are a strong woman and realize you have power, it’s okay for strong men to have power, too. Decent strong men. The kind of men I raised, and you raised. Men who are far from threatened by strong women and instead celebrate them.
The kind of men who might make a tasteless locker room joke now and then, but in their hearts they know they would not want to go back to a time where the entire burden was on them. Not for them and not for their wives and daughters. Men who appreciate the difference strong women make in the world. Their world. Their daughters world. No one should stand idly by and watch any woman be shamed or abused under the guise of “just let it go, boys will be boys.” Strong men appreciate strong women, they don’t abuse them.
Strong women can lead, follow, or walk beside anyone, but right now, in these times, we need to take a stand and stop the madness. We need to stop tolerating the put-downs and let our feelings known. I am grateful that I am a strong woman, with a voice that matters. So are you. Join me?