Wow. That was really hard for me to say.
I mean, I have all the lady parts, why wouldn’t I be able to say that?
It all started a few weeks ago. I told my friend D about my life-changing, heart opening experience in Italy. I told him I had been to a therapist, a hypnotherapist, and they all said I didn’t need therapy, I understood what was going on and why. What I didn’t know, was how to move forward… so D recommended a life coach.
I didn’t know what to expect, but when I met the guy, he cut to the chase. No frills, asked the right questions and went straight for the gold. I decided immediately, this is what I needed right NOW.
So fast forward to today, our first real session, and he asked me to tell myself (like in the back of my mind), over and over again, “I am a woman.”
For example, while walking. “I am a woman walking.” Or driving. “I am a woman driving.” Every day, everything I can consciously think of, in the moment, say, I am a woman.
I told him that would be hard to do. Of course, he wanted to know why.
Here’s why. I’m a girl. I’m just a girl. I’m a girl who likes to be free and pretty and fun. I’m a just a single gal out there, a chick that likes feeling like a girl. GIRL.
Do girls have husbands and get married and have babies?
Well, technically yes. But in the world I live in… no. Women do. Women are wives and mothers. Women are vice presidents and presidents and number one sales people. Women attract men.
Do we see the problem here?
I complain about the Peter Pans I meet that swarm about me. Well, if I’m a girl- what else am I going to attract? I’m not a wife, I’m not a mother. I think I want to be… but I sure am not acting like it.
So he asked me if I was ready to be a woman? Do I want to really be a woman? Because I can get those things I want if I am. It also means I have to move on from being a girl. Shit. I really am Phoebe Cates in Drop Dead Fred now. Except “Fred” is my youth.
What is it I am so scared of? Letting go of what I have now? I admit I get great pleasure out of people telling me I look young, that I can post pictures of insane wonderful vacations and tell tales of grandeur.
When I think of a “woman”- I think of unhappiness, boring, dependency, one-note convos about kids, frumpy, old. I don’t think of vibrancy, life, youth, adventure.
The problem is that this is the script I have created within my own mind of what represents a woman. I need to reimagine that word. What about strong, smart, loving, and devoted? A wife? A mother?
I asked several guy friends of mine if they saw me as a girl or a woman- and all of them- said girl. F%^&.
But beyond that- I think of myself as a girl. I think of myself as only a young daughter and a sister, not a mother or a wife or a partner. I am putting out there being a girl, and people have taken notice. People I attract are attracted to a girl. Not a woman.
I have been in tears about this all night- because I am ready to grow, yes, but also because I am mourning my loss. My loss of who I have been all this time. I know it’s time for me to be a woman. I just need to start getting comfortable with that. I mean, seriously, I’m thirty-six. It’s time. I am a f%^&ing woman.
4 thoughts on “I am a Woman”
Boy, do I relate to this post! First off you ARE all woman! You’re just full of sass, adventure and life! I totally get what you’re saying about finding that balance between girl and woman. I’ve had this same battle. Just don’t forget the quote in the movie “Under the Tuscan Sun” with Diane Lane. “No matter what happens, always keep your childish innocence. It’s the most important thing. You have to live spherically, in many directions. Never lose your childish enthusiasm and things will come your way.” I think your girlish enthusiasm is part of your shine, Jessica! We all need to grow and make adjustments on our journey but keep that part of you that shines.
Ha ha – thanks, A. It is a weird in between right now. I think I’m going to come up with a new term for it and blog about it soon. 🙂 Or to quote Britney Spears, “I’m not a girl, not yet a woman… ” lol. Gads, I hope I’m farther along than her.
Think of a traveler both before and after a difficult journey. (Okay, I’m making this up as I go and there may be some flaws in my hypothetical, but please play along.) She has both positive expectations and fears, but she has planned well and she is in the right mind to take on this challenge. Now look at her after the journey. Some expectations were met, some fears were realized. But, she’s glad that she took the journey and appreciative that she was so well-prepared. Would any of us look at this woman and criticize her before she took the journey, simply because she hadn’t yet departed? And, indeed, she had been on many other journeys before this one. She was a traveler. She simply wasn’t a traveler who had been on this exact journey before.
So, if you are a traveler (which you are Miss Jessica), then there is no need to buy into these false distinctions based on which journeys you have actually taken. (Now, if you were a “traveler” who never left her house, that would be a different story.) You successfully navigate life in a big, complicated, and beautiful city, you have well-established and gainful employment, you have a treasury of friends and family. You have a mature life.
There are other dimensions that can be added to your life, but most likely others will necessarily fall away. It’s hard to be on two journeys at the same time, right? So, if you want to go on a journey other than the one you are currently on, you have to move to the other starting point. The journey you have defined as wanting for yourself is finding a companion. But it seems, based on your writing, that you are caught up in a different journey, something akin to changing/fixing/modifying yourself and all of the emotional and physical energy attendant to that. Perhaps it is simplistic, but you need to figure out where the real starting point is for the journey you want. Instead of lunch with a life coach, how about lunch at the Explorer’s Club? Your personal Explorer’s Club might be a political campaign, a community volunteer project, your college alumni association.
You are grown up. You are a woman. Now find that Explorer’s Club. And don’t worry, they will recognize you as a fellow traveler.
(And thanks for writing. You are a joy to read.)
Thanks, woman! Ha ha. Yes, I do think that I should explore this more through the world, it was the life coach that showed me a different perspective to see myself, one that I haven’t accepted for awhile now. Now that I get it, I’m more aware and participating in things to support that.