in praise of women: magnificent, spacious, fiery witnesses
I often hear “women are our own worst enemies” in terms of our culture. I’m tired of that argument. I think everyone is their own worst enemy, and I don’t think it’s about something women have specifically against each other.
The uh, broadness, of my experience with the women throughout my life leaves me humble, optimistic, proud, and grateful. I’ve been screwed over by females in business and love, and I’ve planted a few landmines myself. But those enemy-making times were the results of bumbling, struggling humanness, not ovaries or hormones. We could argue the bio-instincts to procreate, protect and feed that spurs some nasty behavior from chicks, or about Queen Bees and Wanna-Bees — all very real social dynamics, but I’m here to give witness to the force of pure Goddess positivity that is the hallmark of my life. Word.
MY LIVED EXPERIENCE IS THAT WOMEN SIMPLY ADORE WOMEN:
: Women shake their cosmic pom poms. Go sister go! How many times has a girlfriend told you, that you got it going on, before you head out the door or the dressing room? That even though your new haircut makes you look like a mushroom, your ass looks grrreat. They’ll be looking at your ass all night, not your hair. Really, you’re hot. Just keep your hat on and don’t sit down. Go get ‘em.
: A woman makes a cup of her heart. She carries your concerns and fears with you, for you. When your eyes fill up with teary news, so do hers. It happens with women you’ve known for years, with women you just met at the grocery store, in the ladies room, in a prayer circle. She carries your story with her. She mixes honey with it and re-tells it to you and helps you notice how great you’re doing, in spite of everything, because of everything.
: Women bare their fangs for you. Like when Tammy threatened to butt her cigarette out between buddy’s eyebrows if he didn’t leave us alone. He walked, we rocked.
: Women feed each other – literally and figuratively. Think of all the meetings or retreats you’ve been to. Who brings the cocoa and sparkling water? Who remembers that you’re lactose intolerant? Who asks you if you have everything you need?
: A woman will sacrifice without calling it a sacrifice. Leila was three months pregnant. I was moving cross-country (again.) Road trip anyone? We U-hauled our way from Seattle to Santa Fe with Leila coughing her cookies at every truck stop. I made it to my desert home and she flew back to the coast. And named her little girl Phoebe Danielle.
: Women hold on. It’s like Audrey Hepburn said, “Never throw anyone out.” It’s like my soul sister Donna says, “We’re all bozos on the same bus so just go with it.” Meep meep.
: Women bypass history. A good sister listens to you bitch about the same jerk for years, she helps you pack when you’re smart enough to leave, and she stands by you when you repeat the same lesson with the next emotionally lame lover. She loves you enough to let you do it your way – again, and again, like it was the first time. No drama is too big for big women.
: A woman howls to help you remember what matters the most. She loves you enough to intervene. She will drag you out of your comfort zone and into the moonlight to say “What the fuck are you doing? You may have temporarily forgotten who you are, but I haven’t and I’m hear to remind you.” Like when Karen told me over green tea, “D, maybe it’s all about the divine feminine for you, maybe that’s the question to live. It’s time to move on from playing small.” Arooooo!
: Women touch you. Michelle and I went to visit a friend in the hospital recovering from surgery. Miche brought lavender lotion and massaged Friend’s feet while she lay achy and groggy. I’ll never forget that stunning moment of loving service.
: Women push. Push babies out, push babies into the world. Baby ideas. Baby thought forms. Baby parts of you. “But Danielle, it’s just a thought-form that you ‘can’t take more,’” Navjit told me. “Don’t constrict. Expand.” Boundaries, pushed.
: Women know how to navigate the layers because they love the layers. Folds of skin, the sediments of time, the stories that build into the present. Like how Candis not only remembers what I love but knows why I love it. She is reverent, keen, actively interested in the why of me – and that is what it means to be witnessed by a woman. Word.