This afternoon I want to tell you what my vision of
For there’s the the rub: The woman who lives
Sometimes she is scared. Sometimes she is broken. But always she is alive. With possibility. And dreams. Alive in a house that holds her like a hug. Not picking every last piece of furniture from one catalogue but giving her very own sanctuary time and space in which to develop a personality that truly reflects who she is and more than that, who she wants to be. Sometimes she is frustrated. A little demented. But she never finds herself standing at the school gates making the kind of small talk that makes her want to scream, nor tolerates the kind of practices designed to create robots instead of children. She reads, She meditates. She journals. And above all else she nurtures a rich inner life she does not have to share with anyone, for it is hers and hers alone.
You see I know far too many women who are empty. Who live to make money or please their husbands. I know women who are martyrs to their children. To terrible relationships with their Fathers. To housework and the botox in their foreheads. To trying to give the rest of the world the impression that all is well behind their own four walls when there is little beyond borderline alcoholism, a pile of ironing and yet another box set. I know women who say spiteful things because they are hurting. Who gossip about those living authentically because they so desperately want that authenticity for themselves. Women who simply don’t care that her relationship with her partner is non-existent as long as he brings home enough pennies to put another shiny car on the drive and pay the second mortgage on their holiday home and women who barely know their children at all, but enforce the kind of home rules that stifle their little souls.
I know these women. And I wish I didn’t. I wish I could give them all the key to their own authenticity. To grant them permission to be real, honest and even a little ridiculous at times. I want them to know that no-one cares whether the pictures they parade on Facebook show the perfect 2.4 family, but some of us care whether the woman who took those pictures feels alive. Feels hopeful. Feels energised by her own life and the routines and rituals she has created to support it. I want to say stop now. Take a deep breath and let’s examine all that is true and necessary and abandon all that is dis-honest and done only to keep up appearances. I want to say stand in your own light and reap the beautiful consequences. Feel the scary highs and lows. Cry and scream and throw in the
Visit galleries instead of holding coffee mornings. Go the theatre. Go to Italy! Read and read and read some more. Take the course. Do
Remember what it is to be you. Before you were a mother or a wife. Or a cashier or a teacher. Find a way to integrate that real you in to your everyday, in to your relationships, your obligations and resolve here and now to weather the storms of protest that just might come when you finally decide to be your best self.
This then is what I mean by living