Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Kim's Challenge: Meaning of Womanhood

One of my friends and coworkers at the bookstore, Kim, recently re-started her blog.  She told me it's because this blog "inspired her."

Aww shucks!  Guess I'm good for something!

In any case, I was imparting some of the wisdom that my writing teachers imparted to me (and I'll tell you as well if you attend my session on Blogging at the Keystone Conference this Saturday!) (shameless plug), which was "write every day- even if it's just a little."

To assist her in this, I challenged her to write on a topic of my choosing, and I would write on a topic of HER choosing.  I challenged her with "What Being a Woman Means to Me."  She's a GG, and I was genuinely interested to read what she came up with.  And she absolutely nailed it!  Read her piece HERE.

Then, she had the cheek to throw my topic right back at me!

Well, this is something I think about a LOT.  And my view has evolved over time, and I've actually touched on this topic several times both in my blogs and in my column at TG Forum.

For the first 40+ years of my life, I saw Womanhood as the unattainable Dream.  I saw woman as being infinitely better than Men- as Men were all about the next Fight, Challenge, Way to Prove their Manhood.  Being a guy was all a big "D**k Measuring Contest.  Women produced Life.  Women had emotions.  And I so desperately knew I was one but could never ever reveal it.

In 2008, that changed.  My feminine side re-awakened.  I was Sophie once a month.  Being a Woman became a quest, yet a shameful secret.  I was raised to think being trans was horrible- that I was a freak.  I grew up in the 70s and 80s after all!  My early blogs discuss my torn feeling about this quite a bit.

But, as I learned more, and met more people, my confidence grew.  Being a woman was still the unattainable dream, or was it?  I mean, I started HRT...

Then, MIL discovered my secret.  I was thrown out.  Lisa, my dearest friend, died.  My old life collapsed into fragments.

Being a Woman was no longer a Quest or a Dream... it was an Inevitability.  I had no other options, save death.

And so I went Full Time two years ago this month.

What Does Womanhood Mean to me Now?

It's something I, and my sisters like me, have to Earn.  Every day.  It is a cherished gift.  For GGs, it's a birthright.  For my sisters and I, it is Nirvana.

Being Female has so many challenges.  Men treat me differently.  They assume stupidity.  Yes, they do.  They "man-splain."

As I've written before, males of my generation were raised to think themselves to females.  I actually wonder if that's why there is so much violence against transwomen- we have surrendered our "birthright" of male "superiority" willingly.  Or is it because if a man finds us attractive, his friends will accuse him of *horrors* being Gay?

(For my generation, calling a guy "gay" was an instant fight.  Any insinuation of femininity was and is considered an insult.  And it seems that is still the way it is today.)

Of course, I am so much more than my Gender.  I am an educated person.  I am a devoted parent.  I do my best to help others.  BUT...


I no longer have to think about my gender every day.  I no longer have to ache Every Day.  I no longer have to wonder Why not Me  EVERY DAY.  Live with that for over forty years...

Yes, I think about being a woman.  Every time I see a guy staring at my breasts.  Every time I put on a bra.  Every time some guy talks down to me and I think "you have NO idea stupid you sound."

But mostly, when I think about being a Woman, I just Smile.  

Because I am a Woman.  And that means everything to me.

Hear Me Write... no that's not right.

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