Whenever I tell people that I used to play hockey (not an often occurrence), their jaw practically hits the floor, 90% of the time laughter is the immediate male reaction and my girl gang still doesn’t believe that ten years of my life were dedicated to this male dominated sport.
Is it that girls can’t win at male dominated sports? Or are we just “not as athletic”? Is it that growing up, our gender is supposed to love pink, playing with Barbie’s (or was it Bratz?), doing ballet, playing house and dress-up- perhaps all the above? I know my younger self is guilty of all listed offences.
Don’t you worry people, we have expanded our horizons in more ways than one. I really do believe today’s world is opening more doors to this whole idea of being neutral, versus ten years ago and I applaud that. Unfortunately, society has embedded these beliefs since the beginning of time (dun*dun*dun), that boys should be associated with blue, while girls are associated with pink and it has genuinely become second nature to assume such gender constructs. These gender constructs especially played a seamless role in my life, being the only daughter and sister in my family!
Growing up with a twin brother and an older brother has contributed heavily to shaping the hard shell that my sweetness is coated in. There was always unconditional love but being in a male dominated household has undoubtedly taught me to suck it up, in the least harsh way possible and that men don’t always do as they say- agree or agree? I think that’s why I really struggle to let people in (cough, cough *men*) and I find it very difficult to verbalize my true feelings (oh no, this is getting ‘motional), trust me I’m working on it! Not all men are bad, repeat after P. Although I will admit It’s as hard to prove as I figured. When I was younger I always wanted to do “what the boys were doing”, and taking the time to reflect on how previous experiences in attempt to fit in have contributed to my womanhood has been so enlightening. It’s truly made me recognize how much I’ve grown into the woman I was always meant to be. There are always what if’s, should have’s and could have’s, but something I’m trying to work on is taking this complicated thing we call life, one day at a time!
It’s interesting to me because women have been so heavily portrayed in the media as weak(er), naïve, easily manipulated and plain pretty, but today after finding my voice as a woman, I’d consider myself the opposite. Essentially because I’m good at getting shit done, and enjoy taking control, I’m seen as “aggressive and intimidating”, he said it- not me! But when a man takes the same approach, if not more aggressive, these terms are never associated with his way of doing things. If only I could control human perception…But my point here is you should NEVER change your way of doing things because of someone else’s disapproval. I have found my voice and am always learning how to use it. Regardless of the backlash you may receive, always stand up for your beliefs. Trust me, you’ll look back and eventually be thankful that you didn’t compromise you for someone else’s ratification!
I really love and admire the global growth that has occurred in the past five years within brands and organizations, who have reflected female empowerment through business and have shown that females are just as, if not MORE determined, goal-oriented and successful than men. The world is becoming aware that men are no longer the only people fit for CEO positions- hallelujah! I will continue to surround myself with boss babes and follow inspiring females who are living each day with conviction, fighting for the equality and respect we chicks deserve.
I am forever thankful for my greatest role model and real life Beyoncé, my mama, for inspiring me to be the best version of myself day after day. She stayed home while my brothers and I were growing up and I genuinely don’t know what I would have done without her always there to be on my side, literally! I mean this woman supported me during some of my most questionable periods in my growth and continues to be my biggest fan. Appreciate where you came from, build upon your strengths and challenge your weaknesses– something I try to remind myself of!
Today I see this woman in the mirror who is stronger than ever before, eager to learn and grow more every day. With the support I’ve received from those around me, I am more comfortable and inspired to #SlayEveryday while still valuing my beliefs and what’s important to me. I hope that each daughter, sister, friend and woman can surround themselves with inspiring motivators who challenge the status quo. I promise you that there is at least one person who looks up to the special woman you are too.
I’m happy I got to share a splice of my womanhood and my various beliefs surrounding #GirlPower. Hopefully you’re feeling (more) informed and inspired.
Goal getter girls!