Aching for the woman I used to know.
Her laugh was hearty,
her body fit,
her time her own.
My time now measured,
the air thick with responsibility.
How can she be found in this world of restriction?
Inhale again the sweet taste
We meet again, a heady reunion.
Passion felt for adventure,
the outside world.
Returning: will the undertow prove too powerful?
Determined and tempered she emerges,
but not diluted.
Reconnected with the selves of the past:
some need space to grow,
some need to be let go.
But losses not the focus anymore.
A new beginning – a definition of self.
She has now the lioness’s pride,
and a home
for her heart.
I am now a mother.
Some things I have lost,
I have gained.
“A gender-equal society would be one where the word ‘gender’ does not exist: where everyone can be themselves.”*
I’ve always been aware of gender conditioning and actively tried to combat any lingering prejudices or stereotypes in my own parenting, even down to encouraging dolls with my boys when they were little. It’s great to read people writing about gender issues they’re experiencing with their kids. For too long these subjects have been discouraged or silenced. I’d love to publish some more creative writing on this topic, especially if you are struggling with a child who actively tries to move away from gender normative preferences. A society where everyone can be themselves – thanks Gloria for those aspirational words.
* Gloria Steinem