I have friends who have been all over the modern day feminist forefront for years. Take my school friend Paula – an inspiring drama teacher, gender equality activist, high school presenter/speaker, mum to 2 girls and women’s empowerment advocate at the helm of Questions for You, whose campaign to boycott Brisbane-based Wicked Campers and their sexist and perversely degrading graffiti-covered camper vans hit mainstream media, from the Triple J Hack program, The Project and Cosmopolitan Magazine all the way to The Senate.
Then there’s my friend Sue Muller of Smile Chickie fame. Sue offers a supportive FB membership group, inspiring and encouraging women to be authentic, vulnerable and without-BS. The masks are off, the swear jar was tossed into the recycling bin long ago and women are free to be themselves. Along with a combo of Secret Superhero Rings and Unstoppable Necklaces crafted by the creative talents of Celeste De Matteis who I met in Florence last year (don’t get me started on Italy or we’ll be here for hours) these women are in existence to help inspire and build up other women.
And then there’s my own mentor, colleague and friend, the quietly powerful Period Revolutionary, Lara Briden, who is changing the way period health is approached and educating women around the world through her blog and book, Period Repair Manual.
And the reason I hold admiration for these women is because they represent the full spectrum of feminine power. It doesn’t matter if you’re vocal and extrovert, subtle and introvert or somewhere in-between. It doesn’t matter if you shout from the rooftops, speak, write, educate, create or hold space for other women to shine. The strength in women is the ability to remain clear and centred, stand strong in our core and radiate outwards the force that is within.
I have always known women have got the s&*t end of the stick. I have not always known the flipside of our innate wisdom and power. Or maybe I have, but it’s been a life journey to claim it as an equal right. I’ve never really considered myself a feminist before, but a modern day feminist, it appears, is an integral part of my DNA now being ignited because we, as a society, are still not getting it.
But I also have a deep concern and sadness that our men are as lost as we are.
So be it individuals or global societies, the masculine modus operandi that women (and men) have been numbed into accepting as normal needs to change.
Try replacing “he” with “she” wherever you see it written and feel your body response. It’s like writing with your opposite hand, throwing your bag on the opposite shoulder or playing the guitar back to front. It feels wrong and that is deeply concerning.
Nowhere is this more evident than in the field of medical research, where large extrapolations regarding women’s bodies, hormones, cycles and biochemical responses are derived from male-only studies.
So what does it mean to be a modern day feminist? In essence, it means it’s time to stop playing it small in the fear that we, as women, will be considered difficult (see Aviva Romm’s Why Hypothyroidism is a Feminist Issue). In fact, the more I repeat the phrase, “a difficult woman,” the more I’m cosying up to it.
We are not crazed, weird, unfathomable creatures. We are not incomprehensible or incapable. We are not sex toys. We are not weak-willed, stupid or less than. We have been persecuted for centuries and have never truly been free to engage, dialogue, explore, discover nor be seen and heard in our individual and collective force. We are not better or worse. We are the silenced yet essential counterbalance to a world that is tipping into devastating destruction.
So here we are in 2018, once again straightening our spines, lifting our heads, squaring our shoulders and warming our vocal chords. We are standing strong in the memory of false accusations, stakes and burning fires and saying, quite simply, enough.
From my own patch of lawn, I am trying to combat the stories I hear of women who are dismissed by the current healthcare system and denied information and options regarding their own health and bodies.
It is unacceptable (and downright uncool) for a woman to be:
- dismissed, scoffed at or have a practitioner roll their eyes at her for asking questions or voicing an opinion;
- shunted out the door after a consult without any eye contact or physical acknowledgement of her presence in the room;
- told she’s being silly and over-reactive;
- told outright there’s nothing wrong with her without a physical examination or further investigation;
- bullied into one treatment option without exploration of less radical options;
- discouraged from seeking a second opinion; or
- pushed into procedures or medications without adequate time for consideration or explanation of the ramifications of those actions.
Women should know their place right?
Yes, yes we should.
And that place is up front and centre, standing strong, being fearless, supporting each other, challenging the status quo, listening to and acting on our intuitive instincts, holding space and speaking up, out and back when confronted with the outmoded and irrelevant, as we forge together toward a new world order.
Who’s with me?
Kate is a qualified naturopath who is passionate about helping women heal from hormonal havoc and inspiring women to know their own power, worth and wisdom.
Kate offers one-on-one Skype consults for irregular cycles, PMS and period pain, endometriosis, PCOS, peri-menopause, mood swings, fatigue and mental and emotional stress.
Simply drop me an email to see how I can help you!