I feel I’m probably like most women…I feel all the premenstrual symptoms are the pits. Shaving (or waxing as the case may be) is a hassle to say the least and given that I’m a bit of a tomboy, even now, make-up and knowing all the tips is overwhelming at times. Do I really need to discuss how annoying pantyhose really are? Dresses and heels and what not are nice at times and yet again more nuisances. There are plenty of times I’ve asked myself…why do I bother with all this? Despite all the ins and outs of womanhood and the pitfalls, there are many joys.
Why do I bring this up? Well, I came across an article that caught my interest for a few reasons. I first came across it under the trending section on Facebook the other day. It’s talking about an airline pilot, who happens to be a woman, received a nasty note from a passenger that clearly still believes that women only belong in the kitchen. First, yes there is a chance that this could be a hoax, but personally this time, I tend to think not. Even if it is a hoax, it still brings up plenty of things to talk about because let’s face it, there are still plenty of people who do actually think that way. As it just so happens, tomorrow is also International Women’s Day. So to all you women out there – be proud to be a woman! It is a blessing (despite the occasional pitfall).
I recall seeing lots of nasty signs putting down Hilary Clinton when she was running for the democratic presidential ticket in 2008. There were plenty of signs that had nothing to do with her politics but told her to return to the kitchen because that’s where she belonged; signs that dealt with her gender not her ability as a political leader. Note: I’m not discussing politics here, just commenting on the social aspect. I would like to note that there are also so-called third world countries (Nicaragua is one) that has had female leaders before we have. So I wonder how progressive we are we really? Sexism is very much alive and well. Misogyny still happens. Pretty ridiculous if you ask me.
Even if the note is a hoax, it forces people to talk about the fact that misogyny still exists. I think it’s easy for people to forget that negative behaviors, such as racism, misogyny and others, still exist. So many folks are convinced that we’ve made so much progress that none of that stuff still happens but that’s not true. Yes we’ve made progress but that doesn’t mean there isn’t still work to be done. I’m not interested in a Utopia (life would be too boring) but I do think it should be a goal to get people to treat others with a basic level of respect. I think this note, one way or another, forces the conversation. I believe things can’t change if ignored; the only way to better ourselves and our world is to face obstacles head on, not turning a blind eye.
On the other side, I love it because…well a female pilot for a major airline is a good sign. I know I personally haven’t ever had one when I’ve flown so it’s a good sign. I love seeing more and more women get into jobs that once could only be men. Granted, it’s also nice to see more and more men in previously female dominated roles, such as nursing and teaching, but today the focus is on women.
It’s not always easy being a woman, but there are so many things that are wonderful about it. There is the physical attributes such as pregnancy, long eyelashes, having curves and long playful hair. There is also the attitude that comes with womanhood, along with independence and flare. This isn’t to say there aren’t good things about being a man, but I clearly can’t speak from that side.
I think I’m mostly lucky to live at a time when there have been so many women who came before me who’s actions and being willing to run “amok” so to speak, have made it so I can live my life so much more freely. While there is still work to do, I don’t have the upward battle they all had. Much thanks goes to the Suffragettes, the Amelia Earharts, Joan of Arcs, the Jane Austens and now the younger generations that include Malala Yousafzai who have or are breaking barriers for the rest of us. I’m excited to live in a time when women continue to make their mark. I’m lucky to be a woman.
And just for kicks…here’s Shania Twain telling it like it is to be a woman – “Man, I Feel Like a Woman.”