As a woman in this world, I've been on a million journeys. The journey of girl children, absorbing all the messages society projects on to them. Teen girls, battling the self-conscious self and the invincible self and fiercely defining themselves. College girls, shape-shifting into career women and the journey of what it means to be a professional and a woman. Personally, I have been on the becoming a wife journey, and the back-and-forth of integrating your single freedom into the compromise of marriage. The very unique journey as a female entrepreneur. And currently, the motherhood journey which has blown me far more open than any other.
Between all of those, I went on one of the best journeys of my life - the journey of prioritizing my inner woman, of raising her up above all the roles we play, and recognizing her as the fuel, the foundation, and the magic sauce of all those other journeys. For many years, I was part of an amazing class of pole dancing women at Sheila Kelly's SFactor studio. Inside those warm, kind studio walls, we owned our femininity, for all its depth and magnitude.
After I had a baby and moved far from the studio, that's a journey that is deeply written on my bones. Without it, I would not have the screaming, strong inner voice that fought for me during post-partum depression. I would not have the Mama Backbone I have now to stand firm in my grounding as a woman and stand up for my daughter. I would not have the confidence and flat out balls to start my own company and yes, actually charge people for what I know.
In a recent blog post about a toothbrush of all things, I mentioned my strong aversion to dolls that look like sluts. The next morning, a gentle reminder from that very important dance driven time in my life arrived in my inbox. "I love you honey..." it said (that is a great way to give anyone feedback, by the way)... "But your use of 'sluts' sounds harsh towards women who choose to dress in given ways".
Oh, Mama Bear. So protective of her young, of the world, of the little girl journey she is on. Mama Bear momentarily ate all other sensibilities. Do I think these Bratz, Monster High, and most Disney Princesses in their current incarnations are completely inappropriate for children. YES. Do I think that Mattell is absolutely out to get our little girls? YES. Don't believe me? Check out a Mattell Merida versus the real deal in this Pigtail Pals post.
Do I think women also have the right to express their femininity however they choose? YES. Without judgmental labels from overprotective mamas like me?