Battle of the Sexes, Women's Day and Zen.
For a couple of days now Mich the fish, Dave the brave, Husband and I had been having "spirited discussions" about feminism and reality of women in our world.
This was just pertaining to the circle of friends we do life with, and by default the stories of extended circles: work, or neighbourhoods, or place of worship...
I'm a woman with a strong opinion on how I want to lead my life and the choices I make for myself.
And this, along with the ability to decide how much others affect or get to me, I want to pass onto my daughter, And to my Son in how he treats his wife's pre-dispositions too.
The men kept insisting that women "got away" with things.
We kept insisting that those were a very small isolated incidences in the large wave of "men's world".
Who's right? Who's wrong?
I know we all have enough stories to support both these theories. And frankly, it's exhausting trying to fight the whole battle of the sexes.
Life Should Not have to be a competition. You know why? There's enough space for everyone :).
I think there's no harm in admitting that my husband / son are just made up of harder strength than daughter / I, and we'll just share life.
Why should I give up on being the apple of his eye and be pampered by love, just to prove an abstract point?
As long as there's mutual respect and dignity, it doesn't matter if I get treated with velvet gloves.
Because when the time comes for an inner strength and an iron support, my convictions and belief in him is the strongest part of my husband.
So what if Dave the brave is asked to carry the bigger bags, he's genuinely stronger!
Mich the fish's is the strong voice that cheers him on, on a sweaty, hard football field. Or that prays that he has the best day at school.
Honestly, If we do debate which gender is the better driver, and reach a conclusion, then what next? Hmm?
Did anything change?
I'll still have to drive when I have to, and Husband will still have to rake up miles when he has to, and there'll still be the same number of idiots driving badly. He/She/It...
As I stand at this phase in my life: mom to a teen and a pre-teen, new wife, besties with the ex, sister, mom of pets, other side of my thirties, having balanced some tricky situations in the last couple of years... I can say just this : Claim a pack of creatures similar to you, hold onto them, love them and leave others to find their own packs.
You know the truth is that we women complicate things. I mean I love us gals, but it's true. Men genuinely don't think of the wildest things we can. Lack of imagination and all, haha.
I'm no expert on the sexes ok? But I'm self aware. Now.
Sometimes these things work themselves out and sometimes they don't.
And that's where finding your tribe comes in!
Ex: my friend Ruth and I come from very different cultural backgrounds.
My friend Manisha and I have similar leanings and thoughts and choices.
My girl friends Leela, Christilda, Kavi, Sumun, Sane... Nothing we can point to and say hey! That's what we share exactly.
But we're a tribe. A commonality of love that can't be explained.
So we just do the dance of love: ignore some things, talk through some things, roll our eyes over some things, share of cup of tea and go back to the biggest of all steps : Accept the differences.
This gets extended to the men in the group too. And the kids.
So then I don't treat my gals' husbands like opposition.
With my pack of creatures, there's an inexplainable thread that binds.
And we all have our own packs.
The problem happens when we move outside our pack and try to make a bunch of relationships work that weren't meant to be in the first place.
Then we begin to hate someone's guts, and make it about their upbringing, or his male uppitiness or the length of her hem, or whatever we can blame.
Now the important part:
STICK TO YOUR PACK.
We don't all need to be universally accepted. We're not called to be everyone's best friend.
We're just called to Tolerate, Be Patient and be Loving to all.
What that translates to in colloquial is this: Live and Let live.
Like the Madagascar penguins : "just smile and wave boys (girls), smile and wave"
Women's Day is a fresh place to start celebrating.
Celebrate the soft, Celebrate the strong,
Celebrate the flab, Celebrate the muscle,
Celebrate the voice, Celebrate the silent,
Celebrate the loud, Celebrate the mild,
Celebrate the colourful, Celebrate the monochromatic.
Celebrate 'cos we all share in making the whole picture.
I don't have to be enough for all.
I just have to be enough for me.
Happy Women's Day.