I believe that I’ve taken for granted how lucky I am to have been able to grow up the way that I have. My family has always instilled a great education of sexual female health throughout my life. I think it probably helps that my sister is an OBGYN as well. :)
So when I come across others, especially women, that are completely unaware of their various birth control options, how their bodies work, & particularly how important gynecological visits are, my passion for women’s health & feminism is only ignited more brilliantly.
Our society unfortunately does a very good job at keeping women in the dark about their sexual health. The reason being is to control women’s lives & to do this, it is necessary to control women’s reproductive options. Thankfully there have been numerous outlets & resources created to combat this problem. However, I have come across far too many younger women that are sexually active, yet have never even thought to go to a gynecological exam. Yes, this has a lot to do with confidence & respecting your body, but this is also a clear representation of the way that young people are being taught about their health options. Too often this topic is glazed over, missing information, & especially introduced as a shameful subject.
All various sexes & genders should have full control of their own bodies, access to reproductive education, options, & services. This is first & foremost a matter of basic human rights & bodily integrity. Yet, if our institutions & society negate these needs, it is ultimately our responsibility to educate ourselves & others. Start a conversation! Use the internet as a tool! Actually walk into a physical bookstore! Talk to your friends, your doctor, your family. This should not be a disgraceful or shocking matter! And this change of perspective begins with each one of us!
“I didn’t always know what I wanted to do, but I knew the kind of woman I wanted to be.” -Diane Von Furstenberg
And oh what a last few weeks it has been. In my class, our teacher had us complete a ‘healthy body image’ activity. The questions asked were:
‘How do you see yourself in the mirror?’
‘How do you feel about your body?’
‘How do you feel in your body?’
I didn’t even need to contemplate my answers. I swiftly wrote down, “I see myself as a very beautiful and confident woman; I believe that my personality shines through in my own appearance.”
So many of the young adults around me had such difficulty writing their answers down. It was surreal seeing my younger self in them, scrambling to piece together their insecurities into coherent sentences. I suppose I’ve taken my great confidence & assertive personality for granted. I had never visually witnessed the great depths of my progress from a young adult into a 29 year old woman. So many of my experiences over the last 10 years have shaped & molded me into the person I am today. Yet, sometimes others, particularly women, receive my poise & confidence in some way threatening & intimidating. This response has absolutely baffled me, but I’ve found that how we treat others is a direct reflection of how we feel about ourselves. When someone is insecure & uncertain in themselves –envy, resentment, & anger arise. If we do not value & admire ourselves, how can we respect & care for anyone else? Simply be the incredible, & extraordinary person that you are. Perhaps you are meant to remind others how to love themselves as well. <3
Be the woman you want to spend time with.
Inspire, motivate, build her up, be kind to her. (Do not call her names, tear her down, or be cruel)
When she dresses up -compliment and smile at her. Assure her that she is beautiful. (Do not glare, roll your eyes, or give jealous stares)
Encourage, support, and speak positively to her. (Do not call her any negative expletive: “bitch,” “slut,” or “whore.”)
When she is bold and strong, praise her. (Do not view her strength as cattiness or competition.)
Do not ever turn your back on her.
Feminism is the belief in the social, economic, and political equality for both men and women, all sexes and all genders. (Let’s move past this idea of binary categories- sex and gender are fluid across all spectrums)
If you believe in this, you are a feminist. Do not let the negative connotations that patriarchal societies create deter you from supporting one another and making the world a better place -for EVERYONE.
I’ve always been encouraged throughout my creative career to sell my artworks or showcase them. Each time, I cannot bear the thought of it. Each drawing, painting, photograph, poem, story, and article that I have ever created, I have infused and forged a piece of myself into it. It’s as if I have chiseled pieces of my soul and placed them in each word, each drip of paint, and each click of the lens.
Every message and phone call exclaiming that you’ve seen these pieces of me encapsulated in my art is precisely (what I feel), every artist truly desires. That acknowledgement, that inspired reaction, the recognition, the…acceptance.
My hugest craving in life is to feel appreciated and loved. And when someone takes the time to notice and acknowledge my creativity, my heart flutters like a butterfly in my ribcage.
Artists create to express, and when their work sparks and ignites more creativity and passion –that’s ultimately what it’s all about. Thank you. <3:)
(Quote originally by Henry Ward Beecher but I changed “he” to “she” )
No matter what happens, I am right where I need to be. What I desire is not always the Universe’s plan. Sometimes God has something much more marvelous and amazing in store for us.
Now is the time for inner work, meditation, patience, and having faith that the door will open when I am ready for it to be opened. There are clearly more lessons that need to be grasped.
Thank you for all of your love and support. It means the world to me having such incredible friends and family at my side.
“If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.” -Woody Allen